Construction of the Dutch Gap Canal began in August, 1864. The majority of the work to remove 67,000 tons of dirt was done by African-American troops under the Union Brig. Gen D. S. Ludlow. Due to naval battles at Trent’s Reach and the regular artillery shelling by Confederate troops, the canal’s completion was delayed until after the end of the Civil War. The picture above was taken in April 1865 near the bluff of Henricus Historical Park. In 1930s the Army Corp of Engineers widened Dutch Gap to its current width. Now, it is a shipping lane for cargo ship on their way to and from the deep water terminal in Richmond.