Prelude to Battle
by Brian Williams
The United States of the 1850's was one of great contrast. Between 1850 and
1860, more than 2.8 million immigrants poured into coastal cities of the North.
The population of New York soared from 515,000 to 814,000 during the 1850's.
This population influx spurred along the Northern industrialization at an
incredible pace. By the end of the decade, the Northern states contained four
fifths of all American factories and two thirds of the railroad mileage. The
South on the other hand, experienced an agricultural revolution during the same
period, fueled chiefly by slave labor. Annual cotton yield grew from 2 million
bales in 1849 to 5.7 million bales in 1859. Although other Southern crops
included rice and tobacco, United States cotton production amounted to seven
eighths of all the world's cotton produced and totaled more than of all its
III Corps Movement
by John Rincon
What were the merits of III Corps move to the Peach Orchard line on 2 July 1863? That question has
been debated for years. We all have our opinions. Naturally we all think ours is correct. What did happen,
what didn't happen, what could have happened, are favorite topics for many to discuss. However, one aspect
to the debate many times gets overlooked. That is how III Corps maneuvered from its position along South
Cemetery Ridge to what we now commonly call the Peach Orchard line. I have researched and studied that question for more years than I care to admit. The following tour may be able to provide some guidance for those who walk the southern part of the battlefield to better understand when, where, and how, III Corps Brigades maneuvered on day two. It has taken me the better part of a decade to have enough confidence to share my interpretations as to how I think the brigades of Dan Sickles moved to their final positions. Am I one-hundred percent accurate? That is seriously in doubt. I would like to think I have done my homework and paid my dues walking the field to the point I have a high comfort level this interpretation has a certain credibility. As with any tour (for lack of a better term,) most times it is advantageous to walk the ground with a good map. When I initially put this tour together I had a rudimentary hand drawn map keyed to this information. Obviously for this application that is not feasible. I therefore have revised the tour to be used if necessary without a map. I would however strongly suggest that a map of the southern part of the field be available when you use this information.
The Death of Union General Samuel K. Zook
by A. M. Gambone
This article is taken from a biography of General Zook, a life-long bachelor
who was mortally wounded in the Wheatfield at Gettysburg on the 2d day [02 July
1863]. He led the Third Brigade belonging to Brigadier-General John C.
Caldwell's First Division, part of Major-General Winfield Scott Hancock's II
Corps. We focus upon the center of that field about 3:00 p.m. on the 2d, after
Major-General Daniel Sickles moved his III Corps forward.
by George Pyle
George Pyle has been kind enough to share his wonderful photos of
Gettysburg from 1956. Look for more photos from George in the near
Mistake of all
by Phil Andrade
The purpose of this essay is to contend that Lee had greater justification for
his belief that the assault might succeed than is generally allowed, and that
the popular perception of that notorious action should be re-assessed in a
light more favourable to Lee’s judgement . Given the comments cited above, it
takes some hardihood to attempt this. On the other hand, bearing in mind the
offensive prowess of Lee’s soldiers as demonstrated on previous occassions,
and, indeed, at Gettysburg itself during the previous two days of combat, the
attempt to break the Union Centre by a massive infantry assault, well supported
by artillery, cannot be dismissed as the result of recklesness or wishful
thinking on the part of Lee.
Stony Hill Self-Tour
by John Rincon
After a number of years of research I have put together a kind of self guided
tour of the fighting on and around the Stony Hill. I did not want to put this
in a narrative format simply due to the fact that the following format allows
you to better use the information in conjunction with a good map of the area. I
have found that the 1868 Warren Survey of the field is a wonderful tool to use
with the information. I hope that next time you are on that part of the field
you will be able to better understand the sequence of events on Stony Hill
using this information.
The 6th Wisconsin at Gettysburg
by Joel Busenitz
The 6th Wisconsin mustered into the United States Army in the early months of
1861. Most companies were gathered in sometime between April and June. These
men came from all parts of southern Wisconsin. Some companies were from Fon du
Lac area, Captain Rufus Dawes’ (commander of the 6th at Gettysburg) company
arrived from Mauston, with two companies comprised of Italians and Germans from
Action at the Witmer Farm
by Scott Mingus
In early summer, 1863 famed Confederate General Robert E. Lee had moved most of
his powerful Army of Northern Virginia north into Maryland, then into
south-central Pennsylvania, leaving behind small detachments to guard parts of
Virginia. Foraging through the lush, fertile farmlands of this hilly region of
Pennsylvania, Confederate infantry and cavalry struck terror into the local
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Last Modified: 03/13/2009.