With the last message Reynolds send to Meade, we know of Reynolds' concern that he fears the rebels will occupy the high ground beyond the town before the Union can occupy it. He then qualifies that initial statement with fighting through the streets of Gettysburg to hold them back.
Hold then back form what?
Occupying Cemetery Hill.
High ground at Gettysburg.
8/7/2022 3:27:02 PM
The Polo Grounds? Not old enough to remember the '56 Giants.....so when I see Polo Grounds, I think of the 1962 Mets....that won all of 40 games. Yeah Casey Stengel.....walking out to the mound to remove one of his many 20 game losers....
Not sure what you are asking us to discuss...but I will bite.
I would like to argue that fighting to save the (so called) 'high ground' at G-burg was a mistake. And not worth decimating the I and the XI corps for.
If I can ignore Culp's Hill, which a single brigade (Greene) was able to defend the night of Day Two, Cemetery Hill and Cemetery Ridge were hardly an awe inspiring defensive position. Wright got there on the evening of Day Two. But was not supported.
Chunks of the under manned PPT charge got there on Day Three. Although what they were supposed to do once they were dab smack in the middle of the entire AoP is beyond me.
Early's two brigade attack penetrated there the evening of Day Two. And was not supported.
Not going to defend what Sickles did, but he was reacting to the fact that Cemetery Ridge ended in a swamp area that was lower than all of the ground in front of it.
Once the two armies collided, the ANV pretty much had to fight.....cuz it had little in the way of a supply chain. They could not stay in the same place for very long. In contrast, to a much greater degree, the AoP could afford to pick their spot.
High ground at Gettysburg.
8/7/2022 7:39:24 PM
The Polo Grounds was a cathedral of Baseball, the site of the greatest Home Run hit in the history of the game and the site of the greatest catch in Worlds Series history. I recall the Giants sweeping the Indians in 4 games in 1954. I saw the Mets play there too.
As far as the high ground of Gettysburg is concerned, IF the I and XI Corps did not fight, the ANV would have occupied Gettysburg, the high ground and the road network. Armies march on roads. Buford and Reynolds had realized that the Union would have suffered tremendous casualties in trying to re-take Cemetery Hill.
Recall that the ANV was a foreign invading army on American soil. In 1862, McClellan attacked that same foreign invading army on American soil. Meade would have had to do the same.
Greene was able to defend Culp's Hill because of the terrain, the field fortifications and the use of interior lines. High ground doesn't have to be a hill, in order to be high ground. Cemetery Hill is still high ground, and you still have the advantage of interior lines, with efficient ease movement of men, ammunition cannons and material. Recall that the advantage of high ground is, you can see your enemy attacking, he is going to get tired climbing a hill and you can exploit any breaks in his line, and you really don't know what is on the other side of the hill.
It is still debated how far Wright got.
Chunks? Maybe 200 men who were stopped with the use of Union movement via those interior lines, pierced the Union line.
Early? Again, the Union position utilized interior lines to push back and ANV attack.
Sickles never saw the advantage LRT, the position he was supposed to occupy.
The advantage of the Mule Shoe ( what the soldiers called their position) or the Fish-hook, ( which is what we call it today), the Union had the advantage of interior lines, which were clicking on all cylinders.
The Union held the high ground, and topography is fate.