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Teresa - Sounds like the beginnings of a good book there. While not an expert on the area. I know there has been a crossing/ ferry at Tappahannock over to the Northern Neck for years, now of course, a bridge. The route the men took could have been here roughly following what is now rt 360 winding around through the various small villages to Heathsville Courthouse. The Coan headwaters are near Heathsville. While there were many Yankee gunboats patrolling the area, I'm sure there were owners of small boats willing to make a few dollars to get the men to a steamboat landing. If you're serious about researching this I'm sure someone at the Northumberland Historical Society would be interesting in helping. I can think of one retired gentleman, whose name I'm hestitant to broadcast, would be interested if he has the time. He may not know about this story. I can't recall any mention in the Bulletins the group puts out. The address is P.O. Box 221, Heathsville, VA 22473. It is a volunteer organization so it may take awhile. They probably would also be able to find a copy of "The Stronghold" by Miriam Haynie in which she relates several stories of the era pertaining to the rivers. Keep me up on what you find. My ancestors owned a good part of the west side of the Coan over the years and other areas in the county. I think I'm probably related to half of the population!