The gatherers chanted "love wins" and sang "We Shall Overcome" and "Amazing Grace" as solemn participants held candles and signs featuring slogans of hope and admiration were placed at the base of a statue of Thomas Jefferson.
It was a remarkable act of healing as the procession followed the same route of the neo-Nazi torchlight parade that triggered last weekend's violence.
Remarkably, Wednesday night's event was spontaneous planned by word of mouth. It was kept off social media in fear that the neo-Nazis would hear of it and disrupt it.
Earlier Wednesday, a memorial service was held for Heather Heyer, 32, who died after a driver barreled through a crowd of counter-protesters Saturday.
Meanwhile, the fallout over President Trump's response to the violence keeps coming. The New York Times has reported that the president's top advisers are "stunned, despondent and numb."
CBS News White House and Senior Foreign Affairs Correspondent Margaret Brennan is in Bedminster, N.J., where President Trump is staying while the White House undergoes renovations.
"You actually have a president who, in many ways, is being isolated and going with his gut and discounting and dismissing some of the advice of his top aides to really try and quiet the controversy he has started," she told Inside Edition.
The nation's top generals and admirals are also speaking out on social media in what's seen as a stunning rebuke to the commander in chief.
"Every single U.S. military branch leader has condemned the rhetoric the hate speech [and] hate groups," Brennan added. "They have not and have stopped short of criticizing the president."
“Events in Charlottesville unacceptable & musnt be tolerated @USNavy forever stands against intolerance & hatred,” Adm. John Richardson of the U.S. Navy posted on Twitter.
"No place for racial hatred or extremism in the @usmc,” Gen. Robert B. Neller of the Marine Corps. posted to Twitter.
No place for racial hatred or extremism in @USMC. Our core values of Honor, Courage, and Commitment frame the way Marines live and act.— Robert B. Neller (@GenRobertNeller) August 15, 2017
“The army doesn't tolerate racism, extremism or hatred,” Gen. Mark Milley, Army Chief of Staff, tweeted.
The Army doesn't tolerate racism, extremism, or hatred in our ranks. It's against our Values and everything we've stood for since 1775.— GEN Mark A. Milley (@ArmyChiefStaff) August 16, 2017