The Info List - Battle Of Gettysburg

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The Battle of Gettysburg (locally /ˈɡɛtɪsbɜːrɡ/ ( listen), with an /s/ sound)[11] was fought July 1–3, 1863, in and around the town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, by Union and Confederate forces during the American Civil War. The battle involved the largest number of casualties of the entire war and is often described as the war's turning point.[12][13] Union Maj. Gen. George Meade's Army of the Potomac
Army of the Potomac
defeated attacks by Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia, halting Lee's invasion of the North. After his success at Chancellorsville in Virginia
in May 1863, Lee led his army through the Shenandoah Valley
Shenandoah Valley
to begin his second invasion of the North—the Gettysburg Campaign. With his army in high spirits, Lee intended to shift the focus of the summer campaign from war-ravaged northern Virginia
and hoped to influence Northern politicians to give up their prosecution of the war by penetrating as far as Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, or even Philadelphia. Prodded by President Abraham Lincoln, Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker
Joseph Hooker
moved his army in pursuit, but was relieved of command just three days before the battle and replaced by Meade. Elements of the two armies initially collided at Gettysburg on July 1, 1863, as Lee urgently concentrated his forces there, his objective being to engage the Union army and destroy it. Low ridges to the northwest of town were defended initially by a Union cavalry division under Brig. Gen. John Buford, and soon reinforced with two corps of Union infantry. However, two large Confederate corps assaulted them from the northwest and north, collapsing the hastily developed Union lines, sending the defenders retreating through the streets of the town to the hills just to the south.[14] On the second day of battle, most of both armies had assembled. The Union line was laid out in a defensive formation resembling a fishhook. In the late afternoon of July 2, Lee launched a heavy assault on the Union left flank, and fierce fighting raged at Little Round Top, the Wheatfield, Devil's Den, and the Peach Orchard. On the Union right, Confederate demonstrations escalated into full-scale assaults on Culp's Hill
Culp's Hill
and Cemetery Hill. All across the battlefield, despite significant losses, the Union defenders held their lines. On the third day of battle, fighting resumed on Culp's Hill, and cavalry battles raged to the east and south, but the main event was a dramatic infantry assault by 12,500 Confederates against the center of the Union line on Cemetery Ridge, known as Pickett's Charge. The charge was repulsed by Union rifle and artillery fire, at great loss to the Confederate army.[15] Lee led his army on a torturous retreat back to Virginia. Between 46,000 and 51,000 soldiers from both armies were casualties in the three-day battle, the most costly in US history. On November 19, President Lincoln used the dedication ceremony for the Gettysburg National Cemetery
Gettysburg National Cemetery
to honor the fallen Union soldiers and redefine the purpose of the war in his historic Gettysburg Address.


1 Background

1.1 Military situation 1.2 Initial movements to battle

2 Opposing forces

2.1 Union 2.2 Confederate

3 First day of battle

3.1 Herr Ridge, McPherson Ridge and Seminary Ridge

4 Second day of battle

4.1 Plans and movement to battle 4.2 Attacks on the Union left flank 4.3 Attacks on the Union right flank

5 Third day of battle

5.1 Lee's plan 5.2 The largest artillery bombardment of the war 5.3 Pickett's Charge 5.4 Cavalry battles

6 Aftermath

6.1 Casualties 6.2 Confederate retreat 6.3 Union reaction to the news of the victory 6.4 Effect on the Confederacy 6.5 Gettysburg Address

7 Historical assessment

7.1 Decisive victory controversies 7.2 Lee vs. Meade

8 Battlefield preservation 9 Commemoration in U.S. postage and coinage 10 In popular culture 11 See also 12 Notes 13 References

13.1 Memoirs and primary sources

14 Further reading 15 External links

Background Military situation Main articles: Gettysburg Campaign
Gettysburg Campaign
and Gettysburg Battlefield Further information: Battle of Chancellorsville, Eastern Theater of the American Civil War, and American Civil War

Gettysburg Campaign
Gettysburg Campaign
(through July 3); cavalry movements shown with dashed lines   Confederate   Union

This 1863 oval-shaped map depicts Gettysburg Battlefield
Gettysburg Battlefield
during July 1–3, 1863, showing troop and artillery positions and movements, relief hachures, drainage, roads, railroads, and houses with the names of residents at the time of the Battle of Gettysburg.

A Harper's Weekly illustration showing Confederate troops escorting captured African American civilians south into slavery. En route to Gettysburg, the Army of Northern Virginia
Army of Northern Virginia
kidnapped approximately 40 black civilians and sent them south into slavery.[16][17][18]

Shortly after the Army of Northern Virginia
Army of Northern Virginia
won a major victory over the Army of the Potomac
Army of the Potomac
at the Battle of Chancellorsville
Battle of Chancellorsville
(April 30 – May 6, 1863), Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee
decided upon a second invasion of the North (the first was the unsuccessful Maryland Campaign
Maryland Campaign
of September 1862, which ended in the bloody Battle of Antietam). Such a move would upset U.S. plans for the summer campaigning season and possibly reduce the pressure on the besieged Confederate garrison at Vicksburg. The invasion would allow the Confederates to live off the bounty of the rich Northern farms while giving war-ravaged Virginia
a much-needed rest. In addition, Lee's 72,000-man army[6] could threaten Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington, and possibly strengthen the growing peace movement in the North.[19] Initial movements to battle Thus, on June 3, Lee's army began to shift northward from Fredericksburg, Virginia. Following the death of Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson, Lee reorganized his two large corps into three new corps, commanded by Lt. Gen. James Longstreet
James Longstreet
(First Corps), Lt. Gen. Richard S. Ewell (Second), and Lt. Gen. A.P. Hill
A.P. Hill
(Third); both Ewell and Hill, who had formerly reported to Jackson as division commanders, were new to this level of responsibility. The Cavalry Division remained under the command of Maj. Gen. J.E.B. Stuart.[20] The Union Army
Union Army
of the Potomac, under Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker, consisted of seven infantry corps, a cavalry corps, and an Artillery Reserve, for a combined strength of more than 100,000 men.[5] The first major action of the campaign took place on June 9 between cavalry forces at Brandy Station, near Culpeper, Virginia. The 9,500 Confederate cavalrymen under Stuart were surprised by Maj. Gen. Alfred Pleasonton's combined arms force of two cavalry divisions (8,000 troopers) and 3,000 infantry, but Stuart eventually repulsed the Union attack. The inconclusive battle, the largest predominantly cavalry engagement of the war, proved for the first time that the Union horse soldier was equal to his Southern counterpart.[21] By mid-June, the Army of Northern Virginia
Army of Northern Virginia
was poised to cross the Potomac River and enter Maryland. After defeating the Union garrisons at Winchester and Martinsburg, Ewell's Second Corps
began crossing the river on June 15. Hill's and Longstreet's corps followed on June 24 and 25. Hooker's army pursued, keeping between the U.S. capital and Lee's army. The Union army crossed the Potomac from June 25 to 27.[22] Lee gave strict orders for his army to minimize any negative impacts on the civilian population.[23] Food, horses, and other supplies were generally not seized outright, although quartermasters reimbursing Northern farmers and merchants with Confederate money were not well received. Various towns, most notably York, Pennsylvania, were required to pay indemnities in lieu of supplies, under threat of destruction. During the invasion, the Confederates seized some 40 northern African Americans. A few of them were escaped fugitive slaves, but most were freemen; all were sent south into slavery under guard.[16][17][18] On June 26, elements of Maj. Gen. Jubal Early's division of Ewell's Corps
occupied the town of Gettysburg after chasing off newly raised Pennsylvania
militia in a series of minor skirmishes. Early laid the borough under tribute, but did not collect any significant supplies. Soldiers burned several railroad cars and a covered bridge, and destroyed nearby rails and telegraph lines. The following morning, Early departed for adjacent York County.[24] Meanwhile, in a controversial move, Lee allowed J.E.B. Stuart
J.E.B. Stuart
to take a portion of the army's cavalry and ride around the east flank of the Union army. Lee's orders gave Stuart much latitude, and both generals share the blame for the long absence of Stuart's cavalry, as well as for the failure to assign a more active role to the cavalry left with the army. Stuart and his three best brigades were absent from the army during the crucial phase of the approach to Gettysburg and the first two days of battle. By June 29, Lee's army was strung out in an arc from Chambersburg (28 miles (45 km) northwest of Gettysburg) to Carlisle (30 miles (48 km) north of Gettysburg) to near Harrisburg and Wrightsville on the Susquehanna River.[25] In a dispute over the use of the forces defending the Harpers Ferry garrison, Hooker offered his resignation, and Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
and General-in-Chief Henry W. Halleck, who were looking for an excuse to rid themselves of him, immediately accepted. They replaced Hooker early on the morning of June 28 with Maj. Gen. George Gordon Meade, then commander of the V Corps.[26] On June 29, when Lee learned that the Army of the Potomac
Army of the Potomac
had crossed the Potomac River, he ordered a concentration of his forces around Cashtown, located at the eastern base of South Mountain and eight miles (13 km) west of Gettysburg.[27] On June 30, while part of Hill's Corps
was in Cashtown, one of Hill's brigades, North Carolinians under Brig. Gen. J. Johnston Pettigrew, ventured toward Gettysburg. In his memoirs, Maj. Gen. Henry Heth, Pettigrew's division commander, claimed that he sent Pettigrew to search for supplies in town—especially shoes.[28] When Pettigrew's troops approached Gettysburg on June 30, they noticed Union cavalry under Brig. Gen. John Buford
John Buford
arriving south of town, and Pettigrew returned to Cashtown without engaging them. When Pettigrew told Hill and Heth what he had seen, neither general believed that there was a substantial Union force in or near the town, suspecting that it had been only Pennsylvania
militia. Despite General Lee's order to avoid a general engagement until his entire army was concentrated, Hill decided to mount a significant reconnaissance in force the following morning to determine the size and strength of the enemy force in his front. Around 5 a.m. on Wednesday, July 1, two brigades of Heth's division advanced to Gettysburg.[29] Opposing forces Union

Key commanders (Army of the Potomac)

Maj. Gen. George Meade, (Commanding) USA

Maj. Gen. John F. Reynolds, USA

Maj. Gen. Winfield Scott
Winfield Scott
Hancock, USA

Maj. Gen. Daniel Sickles, USA

Maj. Gen. George Sykes, USA

Maj. Gen. John Sedgwick, USA

Maj. Gen. Oliver Otis Howard, USA

Maj. Gen. Henry Warner Slocum, USA

Maj. Gen. Alfred Pleasonton, USA

Further information: Union order of battle The Army of the Potomac, initially under Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker
Joseph Hooker
(Maj. Gen. George Meade
George Meade
replaced Hooker in command on June 28), consisted of more than 100,000 men in the following organization:[30]

I Corps, commanded by Maj. Gen. John F. Reynolds, with divisions commanded by Brig. Gen. James S. Wadsworth, Brig. Gen. John C. Robinson, and Maj. Gen. Abner Doubleday. II Corps, commanded by Maj. Gen. Winfield Scott
Winfield Scott
Hancock, with divisions commanded by Brig. Gens. John C. Caldwell, John Gibbon, and Alexander Hays. III Corps, commanded by Maj. Gen. Daniel Sickles, with divisions commanded by Maj. Gen. David B. Birney
David B. Birney
and Maj. Gen. Andrew A. Humphreys. V Corps, commanded by Maj. Gen. George Sykes
George Sykes
( George G. Meade
George G. Meade
until June 28), with divisions commanded by Brig. Gens. James Barnes, Romeyn B. Ayres, and Samuel W. Crawford. VI Corps, commanded by Maj. Gen. John Sedgwick, with divisions commanded by Brig. Gen. Horatio G. Wright, Brig. Gen. Albion P. Howe, and Maj. Gen. John Newton. XI Corps, commanded by Maj. Gen. Oliver Otis Howard, with divisions commanded by Brig. Gen. Francis C. Barlow, Brig. Gen. Adolph von Steinwehr, and Maj. Gen. Carl Schurz. XII Corps, commanded by Maj. Gen. Henry W. Slocum, with divisions commanded by Brig. Gens. Alpheus S. Williams
Alpheus S. Williams
and John W. Geary. Cavalry Corps, commanded by Maj. Gen. Alfred Pleasonton, with divisions commanded by Brig. Gens. John Buford, David McM. Gregg, and H. Judson Kilpatrick. Artillery Reserve, commanded by Brig. Gen. Robert O. Tyler. (The preeminent artillery officer at Gettysburg was Brig. Gen. Henry J. Hunt, chief of artillery on Meade's staff.)

During the advance on Gettysburg, Maj. Gen. Reynolds was in operational command of the left, or advanced, wing of the Army, consisting of the I, III, and XI Corps.[31] Note that many other Union units (not part of the Army of the Potomac) were actively involved in the Gettysburg Campaign, but not directly involved in the Battle of Gettysburg. These included portions of the Union IV Corps, the militia and state troops of the Department of the Susquehanna, and various garrisons, including that at Harpers Ferry.


Key commanders (Army of Northern Virginia)

Gen. Robert E. Lee, (Commanding) CSA

Lt. Gen. James Longstreet, CSA

Lt.. Gen. Richard S. Ewell, CSA

Lt. Gen. A. P. Hill, CSA

Maj. Gen. J.E.B. Stuart, CSA

Further information: Confederate order of battle In reaction to the death of Lt. Gen. Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson after Chancellorsville, Lee reorganized his Army of Northern Virginia (75,000 men) from two infantry corps into three.[32]

First Corps, commanded by Lt. Gen. James Longstreet, with divisions commanded by Maj. Gens. Lafayette McLaws, George Pickett, and John Bell Hood. Second Corps, commanded by Lt. Gen. Richard S. Ewell, with divisions commanded by Maj. Gens. Jubal A. Early, Edward "Allegheny" Johnson, and Robert E. Rodes. Third Corps, commanded by Lt. Gen. A.P. Hill, with divisions commanded by Maj. Gens. Richard H. Anderson, Henry Heth, and W. Dorsey Pender. Cavalry division, commanded by Maj. Gen. J.E.B. Stuart, with brigades commanded by Brig. Gens. Wade Hampton, Fitzhugh Lee, Beverly H. Robertson, Albert G. Jenkins, William E. "Grumble" Jones, and John D. Imboden, and Col. John R. Chambliss.

First day of battle Further information: Battle of Gettysburg, First Day

Overview map of the first day of the Battle of Gettysburg, July 1, 1863

Herr Ridge, McPherson Ridge and Seminary Ridge Anticipating that the Confederates would march on Gettysburg from the west on the morning of July 1, Buford laid out his defenses on three ridges west of the town: Herr Ridge, McPherson Ridge and Seminary Ridge. These were appropriate terrain for a delaying action by his small cavalry division against superior Confederate infantry forces, meant to buy time awaiting the arrival of Union infantrymen who could occupy the strong defensive positions south of town at Cemetery Hill, Cemetery Ridge, and Culp's Hill. Buford understood that if the Confederates could gain control of these heights, Meade's army would have difficulty dislodging them.[33]

First shot monument

Heth's division advanced with two brigades forward, commanded by Brig. Gens. James J. Archer
James J. Archer
and Joseph R. Davis. They proceeded easterly in columns along the Chambersburg Pike. Three miles (5 km) west of town, about 7:30 a.m. on July 1, the two brigades met light resistance from vedettes of Union cavalry, and deployed into line. According to lore, the Union soldier to fire the first shot of the battle was Lt. Marcellus Jones.[34] In 1886 Lt. Jones returned to Gettysburg to mark the spot where he fired the first shot with a monument.[35] Eventually, Heth's men reached dismounted troopers of Col. William Gamble's cavalry brigade, who raised determined resistance and delaying tactics from behind fence posts with fire from their breechloading carbines.[36] Still, by 10:20 a.m., the Confederates had pushed the Union cavalrymen east to McPherson Ridge, when the vanguard of the I Corps
(Maj. Gen. John F. Reynolds) finally arrived.[37] North of the pike, Davis gained a temporary success against Brig. Gen. Lysander Cutler's brigade but was repulsed with heavy losses in an action around an unfinished railroad bed cut in the ridge. South of the pike, Archer's brigade assaulted through Herbst (also known as McPherson's) Woods. The U.S. Iron Brigade
Iron Brigade
under Brig. Gen. Solomon Meredith enjoyed initial success against Archer, capturing several hundred men, including Archer himself.[38] General Reynolds was shot and killed early in the fighting while directing troop and artillery placements just to the east of the woods. Shelby Foote
Shelby Foote
wrote that the Union cause lost a man considered by many to be "the best general in the army."[39] Maj. Gen. Abner Doubleday assumed command. Fighting in the Chambersburg Pike area lasted until about 12:30 p.m. It resumed around 2:30 p.m., when Heth's entire division engaged, adding the brigades of Pettigrew and Col. John M. Brockenbrough.[40] As Pettigrew's North Carolina Brigade came on line, they flanked the 19th Indiana and drove the Iron Brigade
Iron Brigade
back. The 26th North Carolina (the largest regiment in the army with 839 men) lost heavily, leaving the first day's fight with around 212 men. By the end of the three-day battle, they had about 152 men standing, the highest casualty percentage for one battle of any regiment, North or South.[41] Slowly the Iron Brigade
Iron Brigade
was pushed out of the woods toward Seminary Ridge. Hill added Maj. Gen. William Dorsey Pender's division to the assault, and the I Corps
was driven back through the grounds of the Lutheran Seminary and Gettysburg streets.[42] As the fighting to the west proceeded, two divisions of Ewell's Second Corps, marching west toward Cashtown in accordance with Lee's order for the army to concentrate in that vicinity, turned south on the Carlisle and Harrisburg roads toward Gettysburg, while the Union XI Corps
(Maj. Gen. Oliver O. Howard) raced north on the Baltimore
Pike and Taneytown Road. By early afternoon, the U.S. line ran in a semicircle west, north, and northeast of Gettysburg.[43] However, the U.S. did not have enough troops; Cutler, whose brigade was deployed north of the Chambersburg Pike, had his right flank in the air. The leftmost division of the XI Corps
was unable to deploy in time to strengthen the line, so Doubleday was forced to throw in reserve brigades to salvage his line.[44] Around 2 p.m., the Confederate Second Corps
divisions of Maj. Gens. Robert E. Rodes
Robert E. Rodes
and Jubal Early
Jubal Early
assaulted and out-flanked the Union I and XI Corps
positions north and northwest of town. The Confederate brigades of Col. Edward A. O'Neal
Edward A. O'Neal
and Brig. Gen. Alfred Iverson suffered severe losses assaulting the I Corps
division of Brig. Gen. John C. Robinson
John C. Robinson
south of Oak Hill. Early's division profited from a blunder by Brig. Gen. Francis C. Barlow, when he advanced his XI Corps division to Blocher's Knoll (directly north of town and now known as Barlow's Knoll); this represented a salient[45] in the corps line, susceptible to attack from multiple sides, and Early's troops overran Barlow's division, which constituted the right flank of the Union Army's position. Barlow was wounded and captured in the attack.[46] As U.S. positions collapsed both north and west of town, Gen. Howard ordered a retreat to the high ground south of town at Cemetery Hill, where he had left the division of Brig. Gen. Adolph von Steinwehr
Adolph von Steinwehr
in reserve.[47] Maj. Gen. Winfield S. Hancock
Winfield S. Hancock
assumed command of the battlefield, sent by Meade when he heard that Reynolds had been killed. Hancock, commander of the II Corps
and Meade's most trusted subordinate, was ordered to take command of the field and to determine whether Gettysburg was an appropriate place for a major battle.[48] Hancock told Howard, "I think this the strongest position by nature upon which to fight a battle that I ever saw." When Howard agreed, Hancock concluded the discussion: "Very well, sir, I select this as the battle-field." Hancock's determination had a morale-boosting effect on the retreating Union soldiers, but he played no direct tactical role on the first day.[49] General Lee understood the defensive potential to the Union if they held this high ground. He sent orders to Ewell that Cemetery Hill
Cemetery Hill
be taken "if practicable." Ewell, who had previously served under Stonewall Jackson, a general well known for issuing peremptory orders, determined such an assault was not practicable and, thus, did not attempt it; this decision is considered by historians to be a great missed opportunity.[50] The first day at Gettysburg, more significant than simply a prelude to the bloody second and third days, ranks as the 23rd biggest battle of the war by number of troops engaged. About one quarter of Meade's army (22,000 men) and one third of Lee's army (27,000) were engaged.[51] Second day of battle

Robert E. Lee's plan for July 2, 1863

Further information: Battle of Gettysburg, Second Day; Little Round Top; Culp's Hill; and Cemetery Hill Plans and movement to battle Throughout the evening of July 1 and morning of July 2, most of the remaining infantry of both armies arrived on the field, including the Union II, III, V, VI, and XII Corps. Two of Longstreet's brigades were on the road: Brig. Gen. George Pickett, had begun the 22 mile (35 km) march from Chambersburg, while Brig. Gen. E. M. Law had begun the march from Guilford. Both arrived late in the morning. Law completed his 28-mile (45 km) march in eleven hours.[52] The Union line ran from Culp's Hill
Culp's Hill
southeast of the town, northwest to Cemetery Hill
Cemetery Hill
just south of town, then south for nearly two miles (3 km) along Cemetery Ridge, terminating just north of Little Round Top. Most of the XII Corps
was on Culp's Hill; the remnants of I and XI Corps
defended Cemetery Hill; II Corps
covered most of the northern half of Cemetery Ridge; and III Corps
was ordered to take up a position to its flank. The shape of the Union line is popularly described as a "fishhook" formation. The Confederate line paralleled the Union line about a mile (1,600 m) to the west on Seminary Ridge, ran east through the town, then curved southeast to a point opposite Culp's Hill. Thus, the Union army had interior lines, while the Confederate line was nearly five miles (8 km) long.[53] Lee's battle plan for July 2 called for a general assault of Meade's positions. On the right, Longstreet's First Corps
was to position itself to attack the Union left flank, facing northeast astraddle the Emmitsburg
Road, and to roll up the U.S.line. The attack sequence was to begin with Maj. Gens. John Bell Hood's and Lafayette McLaws's divisions, followed by Maj. Gen. Richard H. Anderson's division of Hill's Third Corps.[54] On the left, Lee instructed Ewell to position his Second Corps
to attack Culp's Hill
Culp's Hill
and Cemetery Hill
Cemetery Hill
when he heard the gunfire from Longstreet's assault, preventing Meade from shifting troops to bolster his left. Though it does not appear in either his or Lee's Official Report, Ewell claimed years later that Lee had changed the order to simultaneously attack, calling for only a "diversion", to be turned into a full-scale attack if a favorable opportunity presented itself.[55][56] Lee's plan, however, was based on faulty intelligence, exacerbated by Stuart's continued absence from the battlefield. Though Lee personally reconnoitered his left during the morning, he did not visit Longstreet's position on the Confederate right. Even so, Lee rejected suggestions that Longstreet move beyond Meade's left and attack the Union flank, capturing the supply trains and effectively blocking Meade's escape route.[57] Lee did not issue orders for the attack until 11:00 a.m.[58] About noon, General Anderson's advancing troops were discovered by General Sickles' outpost guard and the Third Corps–upon which Longstreet's First Corps
was to form–did not get into position until 1:00 p.m.[59] Hood and McLaws, after their long march, were not yet in position and did not launch their attacks until just after 4 p.m. and 5 p.m., respectively.[60] Attacks on the Union left flank

Overview map of the second day of the Battle of Gettysburg, July 2, 1863

As Longstreet's left division, under Maj. Gen. Lafayette McLaws, advanced, they unexpectedly found Maj. Gen. Daniel Sickles's III Corps directly in their path. Sickles had been dissatisfied with the position assigned him on the southern end of Cemetery Ridge. Seeing ground better suited for artillery positions a half mile (800 m) to the west— centered at the Sherfy farm's Peach Orchard—he violated orders and advanced his corp to the slightly higher ground along the Emmitsburg
Road, moving away from Cemetery Ridge. The new line ran from Devil's Den, northwest to the Peach Orchard, then northeast along the Emmitsburg
Road to south of the Codori farm. This created an untenable salient at the Peach Orchard; Brig. Gen. Andrew A. Humphreys's division (in position along the Emmitsburg
Road) and Maj. Gen. David B. Birney's division (to the south) were subject to attacks from two sides and were spread out over a longer front than their small corps could defend effectively.[61] The Confederate artillery was ordered to open fire at 3:00 p.m.[62] After failing to attend a meeting at this time of Meade's corps commanders, Meade rode to Sickles' position and demanded an explanation of the situation. Knowing a Confederate attack was imminent and a retreat would be endangered, Meade refused Sickles' offer to withdraw.[63] Meade was forced to send 20,000 reinforcements:[64] the entire V Corps, Brig. Gen. John C. Caldwell's division of the II Corps, most of the XII Corps, and portions of the newly arrived VI Corps. Hood's division moved more to the east than intended, losing its alignment with the Emmitsburg
Road,[65] attacking Devil's Den
Devil's Den
and Little Round Top. McLaws, coming in on Hood's left, drove multiple attacks into the thinly stretched III Corps
in the Wheatfield and overwhelmed them in Sherfy's Peach Orchard. McLaws's attack eventually reached Plum Run Valley (the "Valley of Death") before being beaten back by the Pennsylvania
Reserves division of the V Corps, moving down from Little Round Top. The III Corps
was virtually destroyed as a combat unit in this battle, and Sickles's leg was amputated after it was shattered by a cannonball. Caldwell's division was destroyed piecemeal in the Wheatfield. Anderson's division, coming from McLaws's left and starting forward around 6 p.m., reached the crest of Cemetery Ridge, but could not hold the position in the face of counterattacks from the II Corps, including an almost suicidal bayonet charge by the 1st Minnesota regiment against a Confederate brigade, ordered in desperation by Hancock to buy time for reinforcements to arrive.[66] As fighting raged in the Wheatfield and Devil's Den, Col. Strong Vincent of V Corps
had a precarious hold on Little Round Top, an important hill at the extreme left of the Union line. His brigade of four relatively small regiments was able to resist repeated assaults by Brig. Gen. Evander M. Law's brigade of Hood's division. Meade's chief engineer, Brig. Gen. Gouverneur K. Warren, had realized the importance of this position, and dispatched Vincent's brigade, an artillery battery, and the 140th New York to occupy Little Round Top mere minutes before Hood's troops arrived. The defense of Little Round Top with a bayonet charge by the 20th Maine, ordered by Col. Joshua L. Chamberlain but possibly led by Lt. Holman S. Melcher, was one of the most fabled episodes in the Civil War and propelled Col. Chamberlain into prominence after the war.[67][68] Attacks on the Union right flank

Union breastworks on Culp's Hill

Ewell interpreted his orders as calling only for a cannonade.[56] His 32 guns, along with A. P. Hill's 55 guns, engaged in a two-hour artillery barrage at extreme range that had little effect. Finally, about six o'clock, Ewell sent orders to each of his division commanders to attack the Union lines in his front. Maj. Gen. Edward "Allegheny" Johnson's Division "had not been pushed close to [Culp's Hill] in preparation for an assault, although one had been contemplated all day. It now had a full mile (1,600 m) to advance and Rock Creek had to be crossed. This could only be done at few places and involved much delay. Only three of Johnson's four brigades moved to the attack." [69] Most of the hill's defenders, the Union XII Corps, had been sent to the left to defend against Longstreet's attacks, leaving only a brigade of New Yorkers under Brig. Gen. George S. Greene behind strong, newly constructed defensive works. With reinforcements from the I and XI Corps, Greene's men held off the Confederate attackers, though giving up some of the lower earthworks on the lower part of Culp's Hill.[70] Early was similarly unprepared when he ordered Harry T. Hays' and Isaac E. Avery's Brigades to attack the Union XI Corps
positions on East Cemetery Hill. Once started, fighting was fierce: Col. Andrew L. Harris of the Union 2nd Brigade, 1st Division, came under a withering attack, losing half his men. Avery was wounded early on, but the Confederates reached the crest of the hill and entered the Union breastworks, capturing one or two batteries. Seeing he was not supported on his right, Hays withdrew. His right was to be supported by Robert E. Rodes' Division, but Rodes—like Early and Johnson—had not been ordered up in preparation for the attack. He had twice as far to travel as Early; by the time he came in contact with the Union skirmish line, Early's troops had already begun to withdraw.[71] Jeb Stuart
Jeb Stuart
and his three cavalry brigades arrived in Gettysburg around noon but had no role in the second day's battle. Brig. Gen. Wade Hampton's brigade fought a minor engagement with newly promoted 23-year-old Brig. Gen. George Armstrong Custer's Michigan
cavalry near Hunterstown to the northeast of Gettysburg.[72] Third day of battle Further information: Culp's Hill; Pickett's Charge; and Battle of Gettysburg, Third Day cavalry battles

Overview map of the third day of the Battle of Gettysburg, July 3, 1863

Lee's plan General Lee wished to renew the attack on Friday, July 3, using the same basic plan as the previous day: Longstreet would attack the U.S. left, while Ewell attacked Culp's Hill.[73] However, before Longstreet was ready, Union XII Corps
troops started a dawn artillery bombardment against the Confederates on Culp's Hill
Culp's Hill
in an effort to regain a portion of their lost works. The Confederates attacked, and the second fight for Culp's Hill
Culp's Hill
ended around 11 a.m. Harry Pfanz judged that, after some seven hours of bitter combat, "the Union line was intact and held more strongly than before."[74] Lee was forced to change his plans. Longstreet would command Pickett's Virginia
division of his own First Corps, plus six brigades from Hill's Corps, in an attack on the U.S. II Corps
position at the right center of the Union line on Cemetery Ridge. Prior to the attack, all the artillery the Confederacy could bring to bear on the U.S. positions would bombard and weaken the enemy's line.[75] Much has been made over the years of General Longstreet's objections to General Lee's plan. In his memoirs, Longstreet described their discussion as follows:

[Lee] rode over after sunrise and gave his orders. His plan was to assault the enemy's left centre by a column to be composed of McLaws's and Hood's divisions reinforced by Pickett's brigades. I thought that it would not do; that the point had been fully tested the day before, by more men, when all were fresh; that the enemy was there looking for us, as we heard him during the night putting up his defences; that the divisions of McLaws and Hood were holding a mile [1,600 m] along the right of my line against twenty thousand men, who would follow their withdrawal, strike the flank of the assaulting column, crush it, and get on our rear towards the Potomac River; that thirty thousand men was the minimum of force necessary for the work; that even such force would need close co-operation on other parts of the line; that the column as he proposed to organize it would have only about thirteen thousand men (the divisions having lost a third of their numbers the day before); that the column would have to march a mile [1,600 m] under concentrating battery fire, and a thousand yards [900 m] under long-range musketry; that the conditions were different from those in the days of Napoleon, when field batteries had a range of six hundred yards [550 m] and musketry about sixty yards [55 m]. He said the distance was not more than fourteen hundred yards [1280 m]. General Meade's estimate was a mile or a mile and a half [1.6 or 2.4 km] (Captain Long, the guide of the field of Gettysburg in 1888, stated that it was a trifle over a mile). He then concluded that the divisions of McLaws and Hood could remain on the defensive line; that he would reinforce by divisions of the Third Corps
and Pickett's brigades, and stated the point to which the march should be directed. I asked the strength of the column. He stated fifteen thousand. Opinion was then expressed that the fifteen thousand men who could make successful assault over that field had never been arrayed for battle; but he was impatient of listening, and tired of talking, and nothing was left but to proceed.[76]

The "High Water Mark" on Cemetery Ridge
Cemetery Ridge
as it appears today. The monument to the 72nd Pennsylvania
Volunteer Infantry
Regiment ("Baxter's Philadelphia
Fire Zouaves") appears at right, the Copse of Trees to the left.

The largest artillery bombardment of the war Around 1 p.m., from 150 to 170 Confederate guns began an artillery bombardment that was probably the largest of the war. In order to save valuable ammunition for the infantry attack that they knew would follow, the Army of the Potomac's artillery, under the command of Brig. Gen. Henry Jackson Hunt, at first did not return the enemy's fire. After waiting about 15 minutes, about 80 U.S. cannons added to the din. The Army of Northern Virginia
Army of Northern Virginia
was critically low on artillery ammunition, and the cannonade did not significantly affect the Union position.[77] Pickett's Charge Around 3 p.m., the cannon fire subsided, and 12,500 Southern soldiers stepped from the ridgeline and advanced the three-quarters of a mile (1,200 m) to Cemetery Ridge
Cemetery Ridge
in what is known to history as "Pickett's Charge". As the Confederates approached, there was fierce flanking artillery fire from Union positions on Cemetery Hill
Cemetery Hill
and north of Little Round Top, and musket and canister fire from Hancock's II Corps. In the Union center, the commander of artillery had held fire during the Confederate bombardment (in order to save it for the infantry assault, which Meade had correctly predicted the day before), leading Southern commanders to believe the Northern cannon batteries had been knocked out. However, they opened fire on the Confederate infantry during their approach with devastating results. Nearly one half of the attackers did not return to their own lines. Although the U.S. line wavered and broke temporarily at a jog called the "Angle" in a low stone fence, just north of a patch of vegetation called the Copse of Trees, reinforcements rushed into the breach, and the Confederate attack was repulsed. The farthest advance of Brig. Gen. Lewis A. Armistead's brigade of Maj. Gen. George Pickett's division at the Angle is referred to as the "High-water mark of the Confederacy", arguably representing the closest the South ever came to its goal of achieving independence from the Union via military victory.[78] Union and Confederate soldiers locked in hand-to-hand combat, attacking with their rifles, bayonets, rocks and even their bare hands. Armistead ordered his Confederates to turn two captured cannons against Union troops, but discovered that there was no ammunition left, the last double canister shots having been used against the charging Confederates. Armistead was wounded shortly afterward three times. Cavalry battles There were two significant cavalry engagements on July 3. Stuart was sent to guard the Confederate left flank and was to be prepared to exploit any success the infantry might achieve on Cemetery Hill
Cemetery Hill
by flanking the U.S. right and hitting their trains and lines of communications. Three miles (5 km) east of Gettysburg, in what is now called "East Cavalry Field" (not shown on the accompanying map, but between the York and Hanover Roads), Stuart's forces collided with U.S. cavalry: Brig. Gen. David McMurtrie Gregg's division and Brig. Gen. Custer's brigade. A lengthy mounted battle, including hand-to-hand sabre combat, ensued. Custer's charge, leading the 1st Michigan
Cavalry, blunted the attack by Wade Hampton's brigade, blocking Stuart from achieving his objectives in the U.S. rear. Meanwhile, after hearing news of the day's victory, Brig. Gen. Judson Kilpatrick launched a cavalry attack against the infantry positions of Longstreet's Corps
southwest of Big Round Top. Brig. Gen. Elon J. Farnsworth protested against the futility of such a move, but obeyed orders. Farnsworth was killed in the attack, and his brigade suffered significant losses.[79] Aftermath Casualties

"The Harvest of Death": Union dead on the battlefield at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, photographed July 5 or July 6, 1863, by Timothy H. O'Sullivan

The two armies suffered between 46,000 and 51,000 casualties. Union casualties were 23,055 (3,155 killed, 14,531 wounded, 5,369 captured or missing),[8] while Confederate casualties are more difficult to estimate. Many authors have referred to as many as 28,000 Confederate casualties,[80] and Busey and Martin's more recent 2005 work, Regimental Strengths and Losses at Gettysburg, documents 23,231 (4,708 killed, 12,693 wounded, 5,830 captured or missing).[9] Nearly a third of Lee's general officers were killed, wounded, or captured.[81] The casualties for both sides during the entire campaign were 57,225.[82] In addition to being the deadliest battle of the war in terms of total casualties, Gettysburg also had the highest number of Generals killed in action of any battle in the war. The Confederacy lost generals Paul Jones Semmes, William Barksdale, William Dorsey Pender, Richard Garnett, and Lewis Armistead, as well as J. Johnston Pettigrew
J. Johnston Pettigrew
during the retreat after the battle. The Union lost Generals John Reynolds, Samuel K. Zook, Stephen H. Weed, and Elon J. Farnsworth, as well as Strong Vincent, who after being mortally wounded was given a deathbed promotion to brigadier general. Additional senior officer casualties included the wounding of Union Generals Dan Sickles
Dan Sickles
(lost a leg), Francis C. Barlow, and Winfield Scott
Winfield Scott
Hancock. For the Confederacy, Major General John Bell Hood
John Bell Hood
lost the use of his left arm, while Major General Henry Heth
Henry Heth
received a shot to the head on the first day of battle (though incapacitated for the rest of the battle, he remarkably survived without long term injuries, credited in part due to his hat stuffed full of paper dispatches). Confederate Generals James Kemper and Isaac R. Trimble
Isaac R. Trimble
were severely wounded during Pickett's charge and captured during the Confederate retreat. General James J. Archer, in command of a brigade that most likely was responsible for killing Reynolds, was taken prisoner shortly after Reynolds' death. The following tables summarize casualties by corps for the Union and Confederate forces during the three-day battle.[83]

Union Corps Casualties (k/w/m)

I Corps 6059 (666/3231/2162)

II Corps 4369 (797/3194/378)

III Corps 4211 (593/3029/589)

V Corps 2187 (365/1611/211)

VI Corps 242 (27/185/30)

XI Corps 3807 (369/1924/1514)

XII Corps 1082 (204/812/66)

Cavalry Corps 852 (91/354/407)

Artillery Reserve 242 (43/187/12)

Confederate Corps Casualties (k/w/m)

First Corps 7665 (1617/4205/1843)

Second Corps 6686 (1301/3629/1756)

Third Corps 8495 (1724/4683/2088)

Cavalry Corps 380 (66/174/140)

Bruce Catton
Bruce Catton
wrote, "The town of Gettysburg looked as if some universal moving day had been interrupted by catastrophe."[84] But there was only one documented civilian death during the battle: Ginnie Wade (also widely known as Jennie), 20 years old, was hit by a stray bullet that passed through her kitchen in town while she was making bread.[85] Another notable civilian casualty was John L. Burns, a 69-year old veteran of the War of 1812 who walked to the front lines on the first day of battle and participated in heavy combat as a volunteer, receiving numerous wounds in the process. Despite his age and injuries, Burns survived the battle and lived until 1872.[86] Nearly 8,000 had been killed outright; these bodies, lying in the hot summer sun, needed to be buried quickly. Over 3,000 horse carcasses[87] were burned in a series of piles south of town; townsfolk became violently ill from the stench.[88] Meanwhile, the town of Gettysburg, with its population of just 2,400, found itself tasked with taking care of 14,000 wounded Union troops and an additional 8,000 Confederate prisoners.[89] Confederate retreat Further information: Retreat from Gettysburg

Gettysburg Campaign
Gettysburg Campaign
(July 5 – July 14, 1863)

The armies stared at one another in a heavy rain across the bloody fields on July 4, the same day that the Vicksburg garrison surrendered to Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant. Lee had reformed his lines into a defensive position on Seminary Ridge the night of July 3, evacuating the town of Gettysburg. The Confederates remained on the battlefield, hoping that Meade would attack, but the cautious Union commander decided against the risk, a decision for which he would later be criticized. Both armies began to collect their remaining wounded and bury some of the dead. A proposal by Lee for a prisoner exchange was rejected by Meade.[90] Lee started his Army of Northern Virginia
Army of Northern Virginia
in motion late the evening of July 4 towards Fairfield and Chambersburg. Cavalry under Brig. Gen. John D. Imboden
John D. Imboden
was entrusted to escort the miles-long wagon train of supplies and wounded men that Lee wanted to take back to Virginia
with him, using the route through Cashtown and Hagerstown to Williamsport, Maryland. Meade's army followed, although the pursuit was half-spirited. The recently rain-swollen Potomac trapped Lee's army on the north bank of the river for a time, but when the Union troops finally caught up, the Confederates had forded the river. The rear-guard action at Falling Waters on July 14 added some more names to the long casualty lists, including General Pettigrew, who was mortally wounded.[91] General James Kemper, severely wounded during Pickett's charge, was captured during Lee's retreat. In a brief letter to Maj. Gen. Henry W. Halleck
Henry W. Halleck
written on July 7, Lincoln remarked on the two major Union victories at Gettysburg and Vicksburg. He continued:

Now, if Gen. Meade can complete his work so gloriously prosecuted thus far, by the literal or substantial destruction of Lee's army, the rebellion will be over.[92]

Halleck then relayed the contents of Lincoln's letter to Meade in a telegram. Despite repeated pleas from Lincoln and Halleck, which continued over the next week, Meade did not pursue Lee's army aggressively enough to destroy it before it crossed back over the Potomac River to safety in the South. The campaign continued into Virginia
with light engagements until July 23, in the minor Battle of Manassas Gap, after which Meade abandoned any attempts at pursuit and the two armies took up positions across from each other on the Rappahannock River.[93] Union reaction to the news of the victory The news of the Union victory electrified the North. A headline in The Philadelphia
Inquirer proclaimed "VICTORY! WATERLOO ECLIPSED!" New York diarist George Templeton Strong
George Templeton Strong

The results of this victory are priceless. ... The charm of Robert E. Lee's invincibility is broken. The Army of the Potomac
Army of the Potomac
has at last found a general that can handle it, and has stood nobly up to its terrible work in spite of its long disheartening list of hard-fought failures. ... Copperheads are palsied and dumb for the moment at least. ... Government is strengthened four-fold at home and abroad. — George Templeton Strong, Diary, p. 330.

However, the Union enthusiasm soon dissipated as the public realized that Lee's army had escaped destruction and the war would continue. Lincoln complained to Secretary of the Navy Gideon Welles
Gideon Welles
that "Our army held the war in the hollow of their hand and they would not close it!"[95] Brig. Gen. Alexander S. Webb
Alexander S. Webb
wrote to his father on July 17, stating that such Washington politicians as "Chase, Seward and others," disgusted with Meade, "write to me that Lee really won that Battle!"[96] Effect on the Confederacy In fact, the Confederates had lost militarily and also politically. During the final hours of the battle, Confederate Vice President Alexander Stephens
Alexander Stephens
was approaching the Union lines at Norfolk, Virginia, under a flag of truce. Although his formal instructions from Confederate President Jefferson Davis
Jefferson Davis
had limited his powers to negotiate on prisoner exchanges and other procedural matters, historian James M. McPherson
James M. McPherson
speculates that he had informal goals of presenting peace overtures. Davis had hoped that Stephens would reach Washington from the south while Lee's victorious army was marching toward it from the north. President Lincoln, upon hearing of the Gettysburg results, refused Stephens's request to pass through the lines. Furthermore, when the news reached London, any lingering hopes of European recognition of the Confederacy were finally abandoned. Henry Adams wrote, "The disasters of the rebels are unredeemed by even any hope of success. It is now conceded that all idea of intervention is at an end."[97] Compounding the effects of the defeat would be end of the Siege of Vicksburg, which surrendered to Grant's Federal armies in the West on July 4, the day after the Gettysburg battle. The immediate reaction of the Southern military and public sectors was that Gettysburg was a setback, not a disaster. The sentiment was that Lee had been successful on July 1 and had fought a valiant battle on July 2–3, but could not dislodge the Union Army
Union Army
from the strong defensive position to which it fled. The Confederates successfully stood their ground on July 4 and withdrew only after they realized Meade would not attack them. The withdrawal to the Potomac that could have been a disaster was handled masterfully. Furthermore, the Army of the Potomac had been kept away from Virginia
farmlands for the summer and all predicted that Meade would be too timid to threaten them for the rest of the year. Lee himself had a positive view of the campaign, writing to his wife that the army had returned "rather sooner than I had originally contemplated, but having accomplished what I proposed on leaving the Rappahannock, viz., relieving the Valley of the presence of the enemy and drawing his Army north of the Potomac." He was quoted as saying to Maj. John Seddon, brother of the Confederate secretary of war, "Sir, we did whip them at Gettysburg, and it will be seen for the next six months that that army will be as quiet as a sucking dove." Some Southern publications, such as the Charleston Mercury, criticized Lee's actions in the campaign and on August 8, he offered his resignation to President Davis, who quickly rejected it.[98] Gettysburg became a postbellum focus of the "Lost Cause", a movement by writers such as Edward A. Pollard and Jubal Early
Jubal Early
to explain the reasons for the Confederate defeat in the war. A fundamental premise of their argument was that the South was doomed because of the overwhelming advantage in manpower and industrial might possessed by the North. However, they claim it also suffered because Robert E. Lee, who up until this time had been almost invincible, was betrayed by the failures of some of his key subordinates at Gettysburg: Ewell, for failing to seize Cemetery Hill
Cemetery Hill
on July 1; Stuart, for depriving the army of cavalry intelligence for a key part of the campaign; and especially Longstreet, for failing to attack on July 2 as early and as forcefully as Lee had originally intended. In this view, Gettysburg was seen as a great lost opportunity, in which a decisive victory by Lee could have meant the end of the war in the Confederacy's favor.[99] After the war, General Pickett was asked why Confederates lost at Gettysburg. He replied "I always thought the Yankees had something to do with it."[100] Gettysburg Address Main article: Gettysburg Address

Gettysburg, November 19, 1863. Crowd of citizens, soldiers, and etc., with a red arrow indicating Abraham Lincoln

Gettysburg National Cemetery

The ravages of war were still evident in Gettysburg more than four months later when, on November 19, the Soldiers' National Cemetery
Soldiers' National Cemetery
was dedicated. During this ceremony, President Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
honored the fallen and redefined the purpose of the war in his historic Gettysburg Address.[101] Historical assessment Decisive victory controversies The nature of the result of the Battle of Gettysburg has been the subject of controversy for years[when?]. Although not seen as overwhelmingly significant at the time, particularly since the war continued for almost two years, in retrospect it has often been cited as the "turning point", usually in combination with the fall of Vicksburg the following day.[13] This is based on the observation that after Gettysburg Lee's army conducted no more strategic offensives—his army merely reacted to the initiative of Ulysses S. Grant in 1864 and 1865—and by the speculative viewpoint of the Lost Cause writers that a Confederate victory at Gettysburg might have resulted in the end of the war.[102]

[The Army of the Potomac] had won a victory. It might be less of a victory than Mr. Lincoln had hoped for, but it was nevertheless a victory—and, because of that, it was no longer possible for the Confederacy to win the war. The North might still lose it, to be sure, if the soldiers or the people should lose heart, but outright defeat was no longer in the cards.

Bruce Catton, Glory Road[103]

It is currently a widely held view that Gettysburg was a decisive victory for the Union, but the term is considered imprecise. It is inarguable that Lee's offensive on July 3 was turned back decisively and his campaign in Pennsylvania
was terminated prematurely (although the Confederates at the time argued that this was a temporary setback and that the goals of the campaign were largely met). However, when the more common definition of "decisive victory" is intended—an indisputable military victory of a battle that determines or significantly influences the ultimate result of a conflict—historians are divided. For example, David J. Eicher
David J. Eicher
called Gettysburg a "strategic loss for the Confederacy" and James M. McPherson wrote that "Lee and his men would go on to earn further laurels. But they never again possessed the power and reputation they carried into Pennsylvania
those palmy summer days of 1863."[104] However, Herman Hattaway and Archer Jones wrote that the "strategic impact of the Battle of Gettysburg was ... fairly limited." Steven E. Woodworth wrote that " Gettysburg proved only the near impossibility of decisive action in the Eastern theater." Edwin Coddington pointed out the heavy toll on the Army of the Potomac
Army of the Potomac
and that "after the battle Meade no longer possessed a truly effective instrument for the accomplishments of his task. The army needed a thorough reorganization with new commanders and fresh troops, but these changes were not made until Grant appeared on the scene in March 1864." Joseph T. Glatthaar wrote that "Lost opportunities and near successes plagued the Army of Northern Virginia
during its Northern invasion," yet after Gettysburg, "without the distractions of duty as an invading force, without the breakdown of discipline, the Army of Northern Virginia
Army of Northern Virginia
[remained] an extremely formidable force." Ed Bearss
Ed Bearss
wrote, "Lee's invasion of the North had been a costly failure. Nevertheless, at best the Army of the Potomac had simply preserved the strategic stalemate in the Eastern Theater ..."[105] Furthermore, the Confederacy soon proved it was still capable of winning significant victories over the Northern forces in both the East (Battle of Cold Harbor) and West (Battle of Chickamauga). Peter Carmichael refers to the military context for the armies, the "horrendous losses at Chancellorsville and Gettysburg, which effectively destroyed Lee's offensive capacity," implying that these cumulative losses were not the result of a single battle. Thomas Goss, writing in the U.S. Army's Military Review journal on the definition of "decisive" and the application of that description to Gettysburg, concludes: "For all that was decided and accomplished, the Battle of Gettysburg fails to earn the label 'decisive battle'."[106] The military historian John Keegan agrees. Gettysburg was a landmark battle, the largest of the war and it would not be surpassed. The Union had restored to it the belief in certain victory, and the loss dispirited the Confederacy. If "not exactly a decisive battle", Gettysburg was the end of Confederate use of Northern Virginia
as a military buffer zone, the setting for Grant's Overland Campaign.[107] Lee vs. Meade

George G. Meade

Prior to Gettysburg, Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee
had established a reputation as an almost invincible general, achieving stunning victories against superior numbers—although usually at the cost of high casualties to his army—during the Seven Days, the Northern Virginia
Campaign (including the Second Battle of Bull Run), Fredericksburg, and Chancellorsville. Only the Maryland
Campaign, with its tactically inconclusive Battle of Antietam, had been less than successful. Therefore, historians have attempted to explain how Lee's winning streak was interrupted so dramatically at Gettysburg. Although the issue is tainted by attempts to portray history and Lee's reputation in a manner supporting different partisan goals, the major factors in Lee's loss arguably can be attributed to: (1) his overconfidence in the invincibility of his men; (2) the performance of his subordinates, and his management thereof; (3) his failing health, and (4) the performance of his opponent, George G. Meade, and the Army of the Potomac.

Robert E. Lee

Throughout the campaign, Lee was influenced by the belief that his men were invincible; most of Lee's experiences with the Army of Northern Virginia
had convinced him of this, including the great victory at Chancellorsville in early May and the rout of the Union troops at Gettysburg on July 1. Since morale plays an important role in military victory when other factors are equal, Lee did not want to dampen his army's desire to fight and resisted suggestions, principally by Longstreet, to withdraw from the recently captured Gettysburg to select a ground more favorable to his army. War correspondent Peter W. Alexander wrote that Lee "acted, probably, under the impression that his troops were able to carry any position however formidable. If such was the case, he committed an error, such however as the ablest commanders will sometimes fall into." Lee himself concurred with this judgment, writing to President Davis, "No blame can be attached to the army for its failure to accomplish what was projected by me, nor should it be censured for the unreasonable expectations of the public—I am alone to blame, in perhaps expecting too much of its prowess and valor."[108] The most controversial assessments of the battle involve the performance of Lee's subordinates. The dominant theme of the Lost Cause writers and many other historians is that Lee's senior generals failed him in crucial ways, directly causing the loss of the battle; the alternative viewpoint is that Lee did not manage his subordinates adequately, and did not thereby compensate for their shortcomings.[109] Two of his corps commanders— Richard S. Ewell
Richard S. Ewell
and A.P. Hill—had only recently been promoted and were not fully accustomed to Lee's style of command, in which he provided only general objectives and guidance to their former commander, Stonewall Jackson; Jackson translated these into detailed, specific orders to his division commanders.[110] All four of Lee's principal commanders received criticism during the campaign and battle:[111]

James Longstreet
James Longstreet
suffered most severely from the wrath of the Lost Cause authors, not the least because he directly criticized Lee in postbellum writings and became a Republican after the war. His critics accuse him of attacking much later than Lee intended on July 2, squandering a chance to hit the Union Army
Union Army
before its defensive positions had firmed up. They also question his lack of motivation to attack strongly on July 2 and 3 because he had argued that the army should have maneuvered to a place where it would force Meade to attack them. The alternative view is that Lee was in close contact with Longstreet during the battle, agreed to delays on the morning of July 2, and never criticized Longstreet's performance. (There is also considerable speculation about what an attack might have looked like before Dan Sickles
Dan Sickles
moved the III Corps
toward the Peach Orchard.)[112] J.E.B. Stuart
J.E.B. Stuart
deprived Lee of cavalry intelligence during a good part of the campaign by taking his three best brigades on a path away from the army's. This arguably led to Lee's surprise at Hooker's vigorous pursuit; the meeting engagement on July 1 that escalated into the full battle prematurely; and it also prevented Lee from understanding the full disposition of the enemy on July 2. The disagreements regarding Stuart's culpability for the situation originate in the relatively vague orders issued by Lee, but most modern historians agree that both generals were responsible to some extent for the failure of the cavalry's mission early in the campaign.[113] Richard S. Ewell
Richard S. Ewell
has been universally criticized for failing to seize the high ground on the afternoon of July 1. Once again the disagreement centers on Lee's orders, which provided general guidance for Ewell to act "if practicable." Many historians speculate that Stonewall Jackson, if he had survived Chancellorsville, would have aggressively seized Culp's Hill, rendering Cemetery Hill
Cemetery Hill
indefensible, and changing the entire complexion of the battle. A differently worded order from Lee might have made the difference with this subordinate.[114] A.P. Hill
A.P. Hill
has received some criticism for his ineffective performance. His actions caused the battle to begin and then escalate on July 1, despite Lee's orders not to bring on a general engagement (although historians point out that Hill kept Lee well informed of his actions during the day). However, Hill's illness minimized his personal involvement in the remainder of the battle, and Lee took the explicit step of temporarily removing troops from Hill's corps and giving them to Longstreet for Pickett's Charge.[115]

Winfield S. Hancock

In addition to Hill's illness, Lee's performance was affected by heart troubles, which would eventually lead to his death in 1870; he had been diagnosed with pericarditis by his staff physicians in March 1863, though modern doctors believe he had in fact suffered a heart attack.[116] He wrote to Jefferson Davis
Jefferson Davis
that his physical condition prevented him from offering full supervision in the field, and said, "I am so dull that in making use of the eyes of others I am frequently misled."[117] As a final factor, Lee faced a new and formidable opponent in George G. Meade, and the Army of the Potomac
Army of the Potomac
fought well on its home territory. Although new to his army command, Meade deployed his forces relatively effectively; relied on strong subordinates such as Winfield S. Hancock to make decisions where and when they were needed; took great advantage of defensive positions; nimbly shifted defensive resources on interior lines to parry strong threats; and, unlike some of his predecessors, stood his ground throughout the battle in the face of fierce Confederate attacks. Lee was quoted before the battle as saying Meade "would commit no blunders on my front and if I make one ... will make haste to take advantage of it." That prediction proved to be correct at Gettysburg. Stephen Sears wrote, "The fact of the matter is that George G. Meade, unexpectedly and against all odds, thoroughly outgeneraled Robert E. Lee at Gettysburg." Edwin B. Coddington wrote that the soldiers of the Army of the Potomac
Army of the Potomac
received a "sense of triumph which grew into an imperishable faith in [themselves]. The men knew what they could do under an extremely competent general; one of lesser ability and courage could well have lost the battle."[118] Meade had his own detractors as well. Similar to the situation with Lee, Meade suffered partisan attacks about his performance at Gettysburg, but he had the misfortune of experiencing them in person. Supporters of his predecessor, Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker, lambasted Meade before the U.S. Congress's Joint Committee on the Conduct of the War, where Radical Republicans
Radical Republicans
suspected that Meade was a Copperhead and tried in vain to relieve him from command. Daniel E. Sickles
Daniel E. Sickles
and Daniel Butterfield
Daniel Butterfield
accused Meade of planning to retreat from Gettysburg during the battle. Most politicians, including Lincoln, criticized Meade for what they considered to be his half-hearted pursuit of Lee after the battle. A number of Meade's most competent subordinates—Winfield S. Hancock, John Gibbon, Gouverneur K. Warren, and Henry J. Hunt, all heroes of the battle—defended Meade in print, but Meade was embittered by the overall experience.[119] Battlefield preservation

Battle of Gettysburg

Protected area

M1857 12-Pounder "Napoleon" at Gettysburg National Military Park Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

Country United States

State Pennsylvania

County Adams

Municipalities Cumberland, Franklin Straban

Campaign Theater Gettysburg Eastern

Landmark High Water Mark monument @ The Angle
The Angle
on Cemetery Ridge

Owners private, federal

Website: Park Home (NPS.gov)

Today, the Gettysburg National Cemetery
Gettysburg National Cemetery
and Gettysburg National Military Park are maintained by the U.S. National Park Service
U.S. National Park Service
as two of the nation's most revered historical landmarks. Although Gettysburg is one of the best known of all Civil War battlefields, it too faces threats to its preservation and interpretation. Many historically significant locations on the battlefield lie outside the boundaries of Gettysburg National Military Park and are vulnerable to residential or commercial development. On July 20, 2009, a Comfort Inn and Suites opened on Cemetery Hill, adjacent to Evergreen Cemetery, just one of many modern edifices infringing on the historic field. The Baltimore
Pike corridor attracts development that concerns preservationists.[120] Some preservation successes have emerged in recent years. Two proposals to open a casino at Gettysburg were defeated in 2006 and most recently in 2011, when public pressure forced the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board to reject the proposed gambling hub at the intersection of Routes 15 and 30, near East Cavalry Field.[121] The Civil War Trust
Civil War Trust
also successfully purchased and transferred 95 acres at the former site of the Gettysburg Country Club to the control of the U.S. Department of the Interior
U.S. Department of the Interior
in 2011.[122] Less than half of the over 11,500 acres on the old Gettysburg Battlefield have been preserved for posterity thus far. The Civil War Trust has preserved 815 acres around the site, some of which is now part of the 4,998 acres of Gettysburg National Military Park.[123] Commemoration in U.S. postage and coinage

Gettysburg Centennial Commemorative issue of 1963

Gettysburg National Military Park Quarter, issued 2011

During the Civil War Centennial, the U.S. Post Office issued five postage stamps commemorating the 100th anniversaries of famous battles, as they occurred over a four-year period, beginning with the Battle of Fort Sumter
Battle of Fort Sumter
Centennial issue of 1961. The Battle of Shiloh commemorative stamp was issued in 1962, the Battle of Gettysburg in 1963, the Battle of the Wilderness
Battle of the Wilderness
in 1964, and the Appomattox Centennial commemorative stamp in 1965.[124] A commemorative half dollar for the battle was produced in 1936. As was typical for the period, mintage for the coin was very low, just 26,928.[125] On January 24, 2011, the America the Beautiful quarters released a 25-cent coin commemorating Gettysburg National Military Park and the Battle of Gettysburg. The reverse side of the coin depicts the monument on Cemetery Ridge
Cemetery Ridge
to the 72nd Pennsylvania Infantry.[126]

In popular culture Film records survive of two Gettysburg reunions, held on the battlefield. At the 50th anniversary (1913), veterans re-enacted Pickett's Charge
Pickett's Charge
in a spirit of reconciliation, a meeting that carried great emotional force for both sides. At the 75th anniversary (1938), 2500 veterans attended, and there was a ceremonial mass hand-shake across a stone wall. This was recorded on sound film, and some Confederates can be heard giving the Rebel Yell. Iced Earth's three-part song cycle Gettysburg (1863), published in 2004, dramatizes the battle. The Battle of Gettysburg was depicted in the 1993 film Gettysburg, based on Michael Shaara's 1974 novel The Killer Angels. The film and novel focused primarily on the actions of Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, John Buford, Robert E. Lee, and James Longstreet
James Longstreet
during the battle. The first day focused on Buford's cavalry defense, the second day on Chamberlain's defense at Little Round Top, and the third day on Pickett's Charge. The south winning the Battle of Gettysburg is a popular premise for a point of divergence in American Civil War
American Civil War
alternate histories. Here are some examples which either depict or make significant reference to an alternate Battle of Gettysburg (sometimes simply inserting fantasy or sci-fi elements in an account of the battle):

Novels: Bring the Jubilee
Bring the Jubilee
by Ward Moore; If the South Had Won the Civil War by Mackinlay Kantor; Civil War Trilogy (Gettysburg, Grant Comes East, Never Call Retreat) by Newt Gingrich, William R. Forstchen, and Albert S. Hanser; Stonewall Jackson
Stonewall Jackson
at Gettysburg by Douglas Lee Gibboney; By Force of Arms by Billy Bennett. Also: Harry Turtledove's Southern Victory
Southern Victory
series has an analogous battle taking place at Camp Hill, another southeast Pennsylvania
town. Short fiction: "If Lee Had NOT Won the Battle of Gettysburg" by Winston Churchill
Winston Churchill
in If It Had Happened Otherwise and If, or History Rewritten, "Sidewise in Time" by Murray Leinster
Murray Leinster
in various collections, "A Hard Day for Mother" by William R. Forstchen in Alternate Generals 1, "An Old Man's Summer" by Esther Friesner
Esther Friesner
also in AG 1, "If the Lost Order Hadn't Been Lost" by James M. McPherson
James M. McPherson
in What If? and What Ifs? of American History, "East of Appomattox" by Lee Allred in Alternate Generals 3. Also: In "Maureen Birnbaum on the Art of War" (tribute to Horseclans) within George Alec Effinger's sword and sorcery spoof Maureen Birnbaum, Barbarian Swordsperson, two armies in a post-apocalyptic world fight a battle at the Gettysburg site sometime in our distant future. Film and television: The Time Tunnel
The Time Tunnel
episode 25 "The Death Merchant," Twin Peaks
Twin Peaks
Season 2 (as a play within a play acted out by characters in the 1990s), C.S.A.: The Confederate States of America, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter X-Men:Origins Wolverine Ultimate General: Gettysburg is a tactical battle simulator video game first released in June 2014 that allows the player to lead soldiers of either side in the Battle of Gettysburg. An expanded version of the game, Ultimate General: Civil War, covering the entire 4-year conflict, was pre-released in November 2016.

See also

American Civil War
American Civil War

Bibliography of the American Civil War Troop engagements of the American Civil War, 1863 List of costliest American Civil War
American Civil War
land battles Gettysburg Cyclorama, a painting by the French artist Paul Philippoteaux depicting Pickett's Charge Armies in the American Civil War Battles of the American Civil War Bibliography of Ulysses S. Grant


^ Coddington, p. 573. See the discussion regarding historians' judgment on whether Gettysburg should be considered a decisive victory. ^ Official Records, Series I, Volume XXVII, Part 1, pages 155-168 ^ Official Records, Series I, Volume XXVII, Part 2, pages 283-291 ^ Official Records, Series I, Volume XXVII, Part 1, page 151 ^ a b Busey and Martin, p. 125: "Engaged strength" at the battle was 93,921. ^ a b Busey and Martin, p. 260, state that "engaged strength" at the battle was 71,699; McPherson, p. 648, lists the strength at the start of the campaign as 75,000. ^ Official Records, Series I, Volume XXVII, Part 1, page 187 ^ a b Busey and Martin, p. 125. ^ a b Busey and Martin, p. 260, cite 23,231 total (4,708 killed;12,693 wounded;5,830 captured/missing). See the section on casualties for a discussion of alternative Confederate casualty estimates, which have been cited as high as 28,000. ^ Official Records, Series I, Volume XXVII, Part 2, pages 338-346 ^ Robert D. Quigley, Civil War Spoken Here: A Dictionary of Mispronounced People, Places and Things of the 1860's (Collingswood, NJ: C. W. Historicals, 1993), p. 68. ISBN 0-9637745-0-6. ^ The Battle of Antietam, the culmination of Lee's first invasion of the North, had the largest number of casualties in a single day, about 23,000. ^ a b Rawley, p. 147; Sauers, p. 827; Gallagher, Lee and His Army, p. 83; McPherson, p. 665; Eicher, p. 550. Gallagher and McPherson cite the combination of Gettysburg and Vicksburg as the turning point. Eicher uses the arguably related expression, "High-water mark of the Confederacy". ^ "Battle of Gettysburg". Encyclopædia Britannica. Britannica.com. 15 February 2017. Retrieved 3 July 2012.  ^ Murray, Williamson; Hsieh, Wayne Wei-siang (2016). "The War in the East, 1863". A Savage War:A Military History of the Civil War. Princeton University Press. p. 278. ISBN 978-0-69-116940-8.  ^ a b Symonds, pp. 49–54. ^ a b Loewen, James W. (1999). Lies Across America: What American Historic Sites Get Wrong. New York City, New York: Touchstone, Simon & Schuster, Inc. p. 350. Retrieved March 5, 2016. Lee's troops seized scores of free black people in Maryland
and Pennsylvania and sent them south into slavery. This was in keeping with Confederate national policy, which virtually re-enslaved free people of color into work gangs on earthworks throughout the south.  ^ a b Simpson, Brooks D. (July 5, 2015). "The Soldiers' Flag?". Crossroads. WordPress. [T]he Army of Northern Virginia
Army of Northern Virginia
was under orders to capture and send south supposed escaped slaves during that army's invasion of Pennsylvania
in 1863.  ^ Coddington, pp. 8–9; Eicher, p. 490. ^ Eicher, pp. 489–91. ^ Symonds, p. 36. ^ Trudeau, pp. 45, 66. ^ Moore, Frank (September 25, 1864). "The Rebellion Record: A Diary of American Events, with Documents, Narratives Illustrative Incidents, Poetry, Etc". Putnam – via Google Books.  ^ Nye, pp. 272–78. ^ Symonds, pp. 41–43; Sears, pp. 103–106; Esposito, text for Map 94 (Map 34b in the online version); Eicher, pp. 504–507; McPherson, p. 649. ^ Sears, p. 123; Trudeau, p. 128. ^ Coddington, pp. 181, 189. ^ Eicher, pp. 508–509, discounts Heth's claim because the previous visit by Early to Gettysburg would have made the lack of shoe factories or stores obvious. However, many mainstream historians accept Heth's account: Sears, p. 136; Foote, p. 465; Clark, p. 35; Tucker, pp. 97–98; Martin, p. 25; Pfanz, First Day, p. 25. ^ Eicher, p. 508; Tucker, pp. 99–102. ^ Eicher, pp. 502–503. ^ Coddington, p. 122. ^ Eicher, p. 503. ^ Sears, pp. 155–58. ^ "Battle of Gettysburg: Who Really Fired the First Shot - HistoryNet". www.historynet.com.  ^ "The Battle of Gettysburg and the American Civil War
American Civil War
- The First Shot Marker". archive.org. Archived from the original on April 16, 2005.  ^ Martin, pp. 80–81. The troopers carried single-shot, breechloading carbines manufactured by Sharps, Burnside, and others. It is a modern myth that they were armed with multi-shot repeating carbines. Nevertheless, they were able to fire two or three times faster than a muzzle-loaded carbine or rifle. ^ Symonds, p. 71; Coddington, p. 266; Eicher, pp. 510–11. ^ Tucker, pp. 112–17. ^ Foote, p. 468 ^ Tucker, p. 184; Symonds, p. 74; Pfanz, First Day, pp. 269–75. ^ Busey and Martin, pp. 298, 501. ^ Pfanz, First Day, pp. 275–93. ^ Clark, p. 53. ^ Pfanz, First Day, p. 158. ^ Pfanz, First Day, p. 230. ^ Pfanz, First Day, pp. 156–238. ^ Pfanz, First Day, p. 294. ^ Pfanz, First Day, pp. 337–38; Sears, pp. 223–25. ^ Martin, pp. 482–88. ^ Pfanz, First Day, p. 344; Eicher, p. 517; Sears, p. 228; Trudeau, p. 253. Both Sears and Trudeau record "if possible." ^ Martin, p. 9, citing Thomas L. Livermore's Numbers & Losses in the Civil War in America (Houghton Mifflin, 1900). ^ Longstreet, From Manassas to Appomattox: Memoirs of the Civil War in America, (Philadelphia:J. B. Lippincott, 1896), pp. 364, 365 ^ Clark, p. 74; Eicher, p. 521. ^ James Longstreet, From Manassas to Appomattox. (Philadelphia, PA: J. R. Lippincott company, 1896), p. 365. ^ Sears, p. 255; Clark, p. 69. ^ a b Edward Porter Alexander, Military Memoirs of a Confederate. (New York: Charles Scribner & Sons, 1907), p. 408 ^ Longstreet, From Manassas to Appomattox: Memoirs of the Civil War in America, (Philadelphia:J. B. Lippincott, 1896), pp. 364, 368 ^ Longstreet, From Manassas to Appomattox: Memoirs of the Civil War in America, (Philadelphia:J. B. Lippincott, 1896), p. 365 ^ Longstreet, From Mannassas to Appomattox: Memoirs of the Civil War in America, p. 366 ^ Pfanz, Second Day, pp. 119–23. ^ Pfanz, Second Day, pp. 93–97; Eicher, pp. 523–24. ^ Longstreet, From Manassas to Appomattox: Memoirs of the Civil War in America, p. 369 ^ Eicher ^ Harman, p. 59. ^ Harman, p. 57. ^ Sears, pp. 312–24; Eicher, pp. 530–35; Coddington, p. 423. ^ Eicher, pp. 527–30; Clark, pp. 81–85. ^ Morgan, James. "Who saved Little Round Top?". Camp Chase Gazette. Retrieved February 21, 2016. Col. Chamberlain did not lead the charge. Lt. Holman Melcher was the first officer down the slope.  ^ Edward Porter Alexander, Military Memoirs of a Confederate. (New York: Charles Scribner & Sons, 1907), p. 409 ^ Eicher, pp. 537–38; Sauers, p. 835; Pfanz, Culp's Hill, pp. 205–34; Clark, pp. 115–16. ^ Report of Maj. Gen. R. E. Rodes, CSA, commanding division. JUNE 3-AUGUST 1, 1863.--The Gettysburg Campaign. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXVII/2 [S# 44] ^ Sears, p. 257; Longacre, pp. 198–99. ^ Harman, p. 63. ^ Pfanz, Culp's Hill, pp. 284–352; Eicher, pp. 540–41; Coddington, pp. 465–75. ^ Eicher, p. 542; Coddington, pp. 485–86. ^ Longstreet, From Manassas to Appomattox: Memoirs of the Civil War in America, (Philadelphia:J. B. Lippincott, 1896), pp.386-387 ^ See discussion of varying gun estimates in Pickett's Charge
Pickett's Charge
article footnote. ^ McPherson, pp. 661–63; Clark, pp. 133–44; Symonds, pp. 214–41; Eicher, pp. 543–49. ^ Eicher, pp. 549–50; Longacre, pp. 226–31, 240-44; Sauers, p. 836; Wert, pp. 272–80. ^ Examples of the varying Confederate casualties for July 1–3 are Sears, p. 498 (22,625); Coddington, p. 536 (20,451, "and very likely more"); Trudeau, p. 529 (22,874); Eicher, p. 550 (22,874, "but probably actually totaled 28,000 or more"); McPherson, p. 664 (28,000); Esposito, map 99 ("near 28,000"); Clark, p. 150 (20,448, "but probably closer to 28,000," which he inaccurately cites as a nearly 40% loss); Woodworth, p. 209 ("at least equal to Meade's and possibly as high as 28,000"); NPS (28,000) ^ Glatthaar, p. 282. ^ Sears, p. 513. ^ Busey and Martin, pp. 125–47, 260–315. Headquarters element casualties account for the minor differences in army totals stated previously. ^ Catton, p. 325. ^ Sears, p. 391. ^ "Gettysburg's Most Unlikely Hero, An Elderly Citizen Who Volunteered".  ^ Sears, p. 511. ^ Woodworth, p. 216. ^ Leonard, Pat. "Nursing the Wounded at Gettysburg".  ^ Eicher, p. 550; Coddington, pp. 539–44; Clark, pp. 146–47; Sears, p. 469; Wert, p. 300. ^ Clark, pp. 147–57; Longacre, pp. 268–69. ^ Coddington, p. 564. ^ Coddington, pp. 535–74; Sears, pp. 496–97; Eicher, p. 596; Wittenberg et al., One Continuous Fight, pp. 345–46.. ^ McPherson, p. 664. ^ Donald, p. 446; Woodworth, p. 217. ^ Coddington, p. 573. ^ McPherson, pp. 650, 664. ^ Gallagher, Lee and His Army, pp. 86, 93, 102-05; Sears, pp. 501–502; McPherson, p. 665, in contrast to Gallagher, depicts Lee as "profoundly depressed" about the battle. ^ Gallagher, Lee and His Generals, pp. 207–208; Sears, p. 503; Woodworth, p. 221. Gallagher's essay "Jubal A. Early, The Lost Cause, and Civil War History: A Persistent Legacy" in Lee and His Generals is a good overview of the Lost Cause movement. ^ "This site is temporarily unavailable". www.brotherswar.com.  ^ White, p. 251. White refers to Lincoln's use of the term "new birth of freedom" and writes, "The new birth that slowly emerged in Lincoln's politics meant that on November 19 at Gettysburg he was no longer, as in his inaugural address, defending an old Union but proclaiming a new Union. The old Union contained and attempted to restrain slavery. The new Union would fulfill the promise of liberty, the crucial step into the future that the Founders had failed to take." ^ McPherson, p. 665; Gallagher, Lee and His Generals, pp. 207–208. ^ Catton, p. 331. ^ Eicher, p. 550; McPherson, p. 665 ^ Hattaway and Jones, p. 415; Woodworth, p. xiii; Coddington, p. 573; Glatthaar, p. 288; Bearss, p. 202. ^ Carmichael, p. xvii; Goss, Major Thomas (July–August 2004). "Gettysburg's "Decisive Battle"" (PDF). Military Review: 11–16. Retrieved November 11, 2009.  ^ Keegan, pp. 202, 239. ^ Sears, pp. 499–500; Glatthaar, p. 287; Fuller, p. 198, states that Lee's "overweening confidence in the superiority of his soldiers over his enemy possessed him." ^ For example, Sears, p. 504: "In the final analysis, it was Robert E. Lee's inability to manage his generals that went to the heart of the failed campaign." Glatthaar, pp. 285–86, criticizes the inability of the generals to coordinate their actions as a whole. Fuller, p. 198, states that Lee "maintained no grip over the operations" of his army. ^ Fuller, p. 195, for example, refers to orders to Stuart that "were as usual vague." Fuller, p. 197, wrote "As was [Lee's] custom, he relied on verbal instructions, and left all details to his subordinates." ^ Woodworth, pp. 209–10. ^ Sears, pp. 501–502; McPherson, pp. 656–57; Coddington, pp. 375–80; A more detailed collection of historical assessments of Longstreet at Gettysburg may be found in James Longstreet#Gettysburg. ^ Sears, p. 502; A more detailed collection of historical assessments of Stuart in the Gettysburg Campaign
Gettysburg Campaign
may be found in J.E.B. Stuart#Gettysburg. ^ McPherson, p. 654; Coddington, pp. 317–19; Eicher, pp. 517–18; Sears, p. 503. ^ Sears, pp. 502–503. ^ Schmidt, Jim (June 25, 2008). "Civil War Medicine (and Writing): Medical Department #18 - Lee's Health at Gettysburg".  ^ Sears, p. 500. ^ Sears, p. 506; Coddington, p. 573. ^ Sears, pp. 505–507. ^ "Preservation Trust Helps Secure Key Piece of Ground in Gettysburg, Baltimore
Civil War Roundtable Newsletter, August 2004" (PDF).  ^ Gettysburg casino plan defeated, Penn State Civil War History Center, April 15, 2011 Archived April 20, 2013, at the Wayback Machine. ^ Writer, SCOT ANDREW PITZER Times Staff. "Country club site acquisition ends 25-year Park Service effort".  ^ " Gettysburg - Civil War Trust". www.civilwar.org.  ^ "Arago: 1963 Civil War Centennial Issue". arago.si.edu.  ^ HNAI US Coin Auction Catalog #1145, Stamford, CT. Heritage Capital Corporation. 2010. p. 160.  ^ "America the Beautiful Quarters® Program - U.S. Mint". www.usmint.gov. 


Bearss, Edwin C. Fields of Honor: Pivotal Battles of the Civil War. Washington, D.C.: National Geographic Society, 2006. ISBN 0-7922-7568-3. Busey, John W., and David G. Martin. Regimental Strengths and Losses at Gettysburg, 4th ed. Hightstown, NJ: Longstreet House, 2005. ISBN 0-944413-67-6. Carmichael, Peter S., ed. Audacity Personified: The Generalship of Robert E. Lee. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 2004. ISBN 0-8071-2929-1. Catton, Bruce. Glory Road. Garden City, NY: Doubleday and Company, 1952. ISBN 0-385-04167-5. Clark, Champ, and the Editors of Time-Life Books. Gettysburg: The Confederate High Tide. Alexandria, VA: Time-Life Books, 1985. ISBN 0-8094-4758-4. Coddington, Edwin B. The Gettysburg Campaign; a study in command. New York: Scribner's, 1968. ISBN 0-684-84569-5. Donald, David Herbert. Lincoln. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1995. ISBN 0-684-80846-3. Eicher, David J. The Longest Night: A Military History of the Civil War. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2001. ISBN 0-684-84944-5. Esposito, Vincent J. West Point Atlas of American Wars. New York: Frederick A. Praeger, 1959. OCLC 5890637. The collection of maps (without explanatory text) is available online at the West Point website. Foote, Shelby. The Civil War: A Narrative. Vol. 2, Fredericksburg to Meridian. New York: Random House, 1958. ISBN 0-394-49517-9. Fuller, Maj. Gen. J. F. C. Grant and Lee: A Study in Personality and Generalship. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1957. ISBN 0-253-13400-5. Gallagher, Gary W. Lee and His Army in Confederate History. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2001. ISBN 978-0-8078-2631-7. Gallagher, Gary W. Lee and His Generals in War and Memory. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1998. ISBN 0-8071-2958-5. Glatthaar, Joseph T. General Lee's Army: From Victory to Collapse. New York: Free Press, 2008. ISBN 978-0-684-82787-2. Harman, Troy D. Lee's Real Plan at Gettysburg. Mechanicsburg, PA: Stackpole Books, 2003. ISBN 0-8117-0054-2. Hattaway, Herman, and Archer Jones. How the North Won: A Military History of the Civil War. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1983. ISBN 0-252-00918-5. Keegan, John. The American Civil War: A Military History. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2009. ISBN 978-0-307-26343-8. Longacre, Edward G. The Cavalry at Gettysburg. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1986. ISBN 0-8032-7941-8. McPherson, James M. Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era. Oxford History of the United States. New York: Oxford University Press, 1988. ISBN 0-19-503863-0. Martin, David G. Gettysburg July 1. rev. ed. Conshohocken, PA: Combined Publishing, 1996. ISBN 0-938289-81-0. Murray, Williamson and Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh. "A Savage War:A Military History of the Civil War". Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2016. ISBN 978-0-69-116940-8. Nye, Wilbur S. Here Come the Rebels! Dayton, OH: Morningside House, 1984. ISBN 0-89029-080-6. First published in 1965 by Louisiana State University Press. Pfanz, Harry W. Gettysburg – The First Day. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2001. ISBN 0-8078-2624-3. Pfanz, Harry W. Gettysburg – The Second Day. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1987. ISBN 0-8078-1749-X. Pfanz, Harry W. Gettysburg: Culp's Hill
Culp's Hill
and Cemetery Hill. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1993. ISBN 0-8078-2118-7. Rawley, James A. (1966). Turning Points of the Civil War. University of Nebraska Press. ISBN 0-8032-8935-9. OCLC 44957745.  Sauers, Richard A. "Battle of Gettysburg." In Encyclopedia of the American Civil War: A Political, Social, and Military History, edited by David S. Heidler and Jeanne T. Heidler. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 2000. ISBN 0-393-04758-X. Sears, Stephen W. Gettysburg. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2003. ISBN 0-395-86761-4. Symonds, Craig L. American Heritage History of the Battle of Gettysburg. New York: HarperCollins, 2001. ISBN 0-06-019474-X. Tagg, Larry. The Generals of Gettysburg. Campbell, CA: Savas Publishing, 1998. ISBN 1-882810-30-9. Trudeau, Noah Andre. Gettysburg: A Testing of Courage. New York: HarperCollins, 2002. ISBN 0-06-019363-8. Tucker, Glenn. High Tide at Gettysburg. Dayton, OH: Morningside House, 1983. ISBN 978-0-914427-82-7. First published 1958 by Bobbs-Merrill Co. Wert, Jeffry D. Gettysburg: Day Three. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2001. ISBN 0-684-85914-9. White, Ronald C., Jr. The Eloquent President: A Portrait of Lincoln Through His Words. New York: Random House, 2005. ISBN 1-4000-6119-9. Wittenberg, Eric J., J. David Petruzzi, and Michael F. Nugent. One Continuous Fight: The Retreat from Gettysburg
Retreat from Gettysburg
and the Pursuit of Lee's Army of Northern Virginia, July 4–14, 1863. New York: Savas Beatie, 2008. ISBN 978-1-932714-43-2. Woodworth, Steven E. Beneath a Northern Sky: A Short History of the Gettysburg Campaign. Wilmington, DE: SR Books (scholarly Resources, Inc.), 2003. ISBN 0-8420-2933-8.

Memoirs and primary sources

Paris, Louis-Philippe-Albert d'Orléans. The Battle of Gettysburg: A History of the Civil War in America. Digital Scanning, Inc., 1999. ISBN 1-58218-066-0. First published 1869 by Germer Baillière. New York (State), William F. Fox, and Daniel Edgar Sickles. New York at Gettysburg: Final Report on the Battlefield of Gettysburg. Albany, NY: J.B. Lyon Company, Printers, 1900. OCLC 607395975. U.S. War Department, The War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1880–1901.

Further reading

Adkin, Mark. The Gettysburg Companion: The Complete Guide to America's Most Famous Battle. Mechanicsburg, PA: Stackpole Books, 2008. ISBN 978-0-8117-0439-7. Bachelder, John B. The Bachelder Papers: Gettysburg in Their Own Words. Edited by David L. Ladd and Audrey J. Ladd. 3 vols. Dayton, OH: Morningside Press, 1994. ISBN 0-89029-320-1. Bachelder, John B. Gettysburg: What to See, and How to See It: Embodying Full Information for Visiting the Field. Boston: Bachelder, 1873. OCLC 4637523. Ballard, Ted, and Billy Arthur. Gettysburg Staff Ride Briefing Book. Carlisle, PA: United States
United States
Army Center of Military History, 1999. OCLC 42908450. Bearss, Edwin C. Receding Tide: Vicksburg and Gettysburg: The Campaigns That Changed the Civil War. Washington DC: National Geographic Society, 2010. ISBN 978-1-4262-0510-1. Boritt, Gabor S., ed. The Gettysburg Nobody Knows. New York: Oxford University Press, 1997. ISBN 0-19-510223-1. Desjardin, Thomas A. These Honored Dead: How the Story of Gettysburg Shaped American Memory. New York: Da Capo Press, 2003. ISBN 0-306-81267-3. Frassanito, William A. Early Photography at Gettysburg. Gettysburg, PA: Thomas Publications, 1995. ISBN 1-57747-032-X. Lyon Fremantle, Arthur J. The Fremantle Diary: A Journal of the Confederacy. Edited by Walter Lord. Short Hills, NJ: Burford Books, 2002. ISBN 1-58080-085-8. First published 1954 by Capicorn Books. Gallagher, Gary W., ed. Three Days at Gettysburg: Essays on Confederate and Union Leadership. Kent, OH: Kent State University Press, 1999. ISBN 0-87338-629-9. Gottfried, Bradley M. Brigades of Gettysburg. New York: Da Capo Press, 2002. ISBN 0-306-81175-8. Gottfried, Bradley M. The Maps of Gettysburg: An Atlas of the Gettysburg Campaign, June 3 – 13, 1863. New York: Savas Beatie, 2007. ISBN 978-1-932714-30-2. Grimsley, Mark, and Brooks D. Simpson. Gettysburg: A Battlefield Guide. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1999. ISBN 0-8032-7077-1. Guelzo, Allen C. Gettysburg: The Last Invasion. New York: Vintage Books, 2013. ISBN 978-0-307-74069-4. First published in 2013 by Alfred A. Knopf. Hall, Jeffrey C. The Stand of the U.S. Army at Gettysburg. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2003. ISBN 0-253-34258-9. Haskell, Frank Aretas. The Battle of Gettysburg. Whitefish, MT: Kessinger Publishing, 2006. ISBN 978-1-4286-6012-0. Hawthorne, Frederick W. Gettysburg: Stories of Men and Monuments. Gettysburg, PA: Association of Licensed Battlefield Guides, 1988. ISBN 0-9657444-0-X. Hoptak, John David. Confrontation at Gettysburg: A Nation Saved, a Cause Lost. Charleston, SC: The History Press, 2012. ISBN 978-1-60949-426-1. Huntington, Tom. Pennsylvania
Civil War Trails: The Guide to Battle Sites, Monuments, Museums and Towns. Mechanicsburg, PA: Stackpole Books, 2007. ISBN 978-0-8117-3379-3. Laino, Philip, Gettysburg Campaign
Gettysburg Campaign
Atlas, 2nd ed. Dayton, OH: Gatehouse Press 2009. ISBN 978-1-934900-45-1. McMurry, Richard M. "The Pennsylvania
Gambit and the Gettysburg Splash." In The Gettysburg Nobody Knows, edited by Gabor Boritt. New York: Oxford University Press, 1997. ISBN 0-19-510223-1. McPherson, James M. Hallowed Ground: A Walk at Gettysburg. New York: Crown Publishers, 2003. ISBN 0-609-61023-6. Petruzzi, J. David, and Steven Stanley. The Complete Gettysburg Guide. New York: Savas Beatie, 2009. ISBN 978-1-932714-63-0. Shaara, Michael. The Killer Angels: A Novel. New York: Ballantine Books, 2001. ISBN 978-0-345-44412-7. First published 1974 by David McKay Co. Stackpole, Gen. Edward J. They Met at Gettysburg. Harrisburg, PA: Stackpole Books, 1956, OCLC 22643644.

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State Memorial Smith Memorial Arch 72nd Pennsylvania

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Eastern Theater of the American Civil War



Chesapeake blockade (May–Jun) Western Virginia
(Jun–Dec) Manassas (Jul) Carolina coast blockade (Aug) McClellan's Operations (Oct–Dec) Potomac blockade (Oct–Jan 1862)

Major battles

Fort Sumter 1st Bull Run



Burnside's NC Expedition (Feb–Jun) Jackson's Valley (Mar–Jun) Peninsula (Mar–Jul) Northern Virginia
(Jul-Sep) Maryland
(Sep) Fredericksburg (Nov–Dec) Goldsboro Expedition (Dec)

Major battles

Hampton Roads Williamsburg Seven Pines Seven Days Battles

Oak Grove Beaver Dam Creek Gaines's Mill Garnett's & Golding's Farm Savage's Station White Oak Swamp Glendale Malvern Hill

2nd Bull Run Antietam Fredericksburg



Tidewater Operations (Mar–Apr) Chancellorsville (Apr–May) Gettysburg (Jun–Jul) Bristoe (Oct–Nov) Mine Run (Nov–Dec)

Major battles

Chancellorsville Gettysburg



Valley Campaigns (May–Oct): Lynchburg, Early's B&O Raid, Sheridan's Campaign Operations Against Plymouth (Apr–May) Bermuda Hundred (May) Overland (May–Jun) Petersburg (Jun–Mar 1865)

Major battles

Wilderness Spotsylvania Court House North Anna Cold Harbor Trevilian Station 2nd Petersburg Crater 2nd Deep Bottom Globe Tavern 3rd Winchester Chaffin's Farm Cedar Creek Boydton Plank Road



Wilmington (Dec–Feb) Appomattox (Mar–Apr)

Major battles

2nd Fort Fisher Bentonville Fort Stedman Five Forks 3rd Petersburg Sailor's Creek Appomattox Court House


James Potomac Virginia Shenandoah

Northern Virginia



Monongahela Susquehanna


Cumberland Valley Gettysburg-Newark Lowlands Shenandoah Valley

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American Civil War


Origins Issues

Timeline leading to the War Antebellum era Bleeding Kansas Border states Compromise of 1850 Dred Scott v. Sandford Lincoln-Douglas debates Missouri Compromise Popular sovereignty Secession States' rights President Lincoln's 75,000 volunteers


African Americans Cornerstone Speech Emancipation Proclamation Fugitive slave laws Plantations in the American South Slave Power Slavery in the United States Treatment of slaves in the United States Uncle Tom's Cabin


Susan B. Anthony John Brown Frederick Douglass William Lloyd Garrison Elijah Parish Lovejoy J. Sella Martin Lysander Spooner George Luther Stearns Thaddeus Stevens Charles Sumner Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad

Combatants Theaters Campaigns Battles States


Union (USA)

Army Navy Marine Corps Revenue Cutter Service

Confederacy (CSA)

Army Navy Marine Corps


Eastern Western Lower Seaboard Trans-Mississippi Pacific Coast Union naval blockade

Major Campaigns

Anaconda Plan Blockade runners New Mexico Jackson's Valley Peninsula Northern Virginia Maryland Stones River Vicksburg Tullahoma Gettysburg Morgan's Raid Bristoe Knoxville Red River Overland Atlanta Valley 1864 Bermuda Hundred Richmond-Petersburg Franklin–Nashville Price's Raid Sherman's March Carolinas Appomattox

Major battles

Fort Sumter 1st Bull Run Wilson's Creek Fort Donelson Pea Ridge Hampton Roads Shiloh New Orleans Corinth Seven Pines Seven Days 2nd Bull Run Antietam Perryville Fredericksburg Stones River Chancellorsville Gettysburg Vicksburg Chickamauga Chattanooga Wilderness Spotsylvania Cold Harbor Atlanta Mobile Bay Franklin Nashville Five Forks

Involvement (by  state or territory)





R. H. Anderson Beauregard Bragg Buchanan Cooper Early Ewell Forrest Gorgas Hill Hood Jackson A. S. Johnston J. E. Johnston Lee Longstreet Morgan Mosby Price Semmes E. K. Smith Stuart Taylor Wheeler


Benjamin Bocock Breckinridge Davis Hunter Mallory Memminger Seddon Stephens



Anderson Buell Burnside Butler Du Pont Farragut Foote Frémont Grant Halleck Hooker Hunt McClellan McDowell Meade Meigs Ord Pope D. D. Porter Rosecrans Scott Sheridan Sherman Thomas


Adams Chase Ericsson Hamlin Lincoln Pinkerton Seward Stanton Stevens Wade Welles


U.S. Constitution

Reconstruction amendments

13th Amendment 14th Amendment 15th Amendment


Alabama Claims Brooks–Baxter War Carpetbaggers Colfax Riot of 1873 Eufaula Riot of 1874 Freedmen's Bureau Freedman's Savings Bank Impeachment of Andrew Johnson Kirk-Holden War Knights of the White Camelia Ku Klux Klan Memphis Riot of 1866 Meridian Riot of 1871 New Orleans
New Orleans
Riot of 1866 Pulaski (Tennessee) Riot of 1867 Reconstruction acts

Habeas Corpus Act 1867 Enforcement Act of 1870 Enforcement Act of February 1871 Enforcement Act of April 1871

Reconstruction treaties

Indian Council at Fort Smith

Red Shirts Redeemers Confederate refugees


Scalawags South Carolina riots of 1876 Southern Claims Commission Homestead acts

Southern Homestead Act of 1866 Timber Culture Act
Timber Culture Act
of 1873

White League



Centennial Civil War Discovery Trail Civil War Roundtables Civil War Trails Program Civil War Trust Confederate History Month Confederate monuments and memorials Historical reenactment Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee


Black Codes Jim Crow

Lost Cause mythology Modern display of the Confederate flag Sons of Confederate Veterans Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War Southern Historical Society United Daughters of the Confederacy

Monuments and memorials


List of Union Civil War monuments and memorials List of memorials to the Grand Army of the Republic Memorials to Abraham Lincoln


List of Confederate monuments and memorials Removal of Confederate monuments and memorials List of memorials to Robert E. Lee List of memorials to Jefferson Davis Annapolis

Roger B. Taney Monument


Confederate Soldiers and Sailors Monument Confederate Women's Monument Roger B. Taney Monument Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee
and Stonewall Jackson
Stonewall Jackson

Durham, North Carolina

Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee

New Orleans

Battle of Liberty Place Monument Jefferson Davis
Jefferson Davis
Monument General Beauregard Equestrian Statue Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee


Confederate Memorial Day Ladies' memorial associations U.S. Memorial Day U.S. national cemeteries


1913 Gettysburg Reunion Confederate Veteran Grand Army of the Republic Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the U.S. Old soldiers' homes Southern Cross of Honor United Confederate Veterans

Related topics

Related topics


Arms Campaign Medal Cavalry Confederate Home Guard Confederate railroads Confederate Revolving Cannon Field artillery Medal of Honor recipients Medicine Leadership Naval battles Official Records Partisan rangers POW camps Rations Signal Corps Turning point Union corps badges U.S. Balloon Corps U.S. Home Guard U.S. Military Railroad


Committee on the Conduct of the War Confederate States Presidential Election of 1861 Confiscation Act of 1861 Confiscation Act of 1862 Copperheads Emancipation Proclamation Habeas Corpus Act of 1863 Hampton Roads Conference National Union Party Radical Republicans Trent Affair Union leagues U.S. Presidential Election of 1864 War Democrats

Other topics

Bibliography Confederate war finance

Confederate States dollar


Confederate Secret Service

Great Revival of 1863 Music Naming the war Native Americans

Cherokee Choctaw

New York City Gold Hoax of 1864 New York City Riot of 1863 Photographers Richmond Riot of 1863 Sexuality Supreme Court cases Tokens U.S. Sanitary Commission

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Municipalities and communities of Adams County, Pennsylvania, United States

County seat: Gettysburg


Abbottstown Arendtsville Bendersville Biglerville Bonneauville Carroll Valley East Berlin Fairfield Gettysburg Littlestown McSherrystown New Oxford York Springs


Berwick Butler Conewago Cumberland Franklin Freedom Germany Hamilton Hamiltonban Highland Huntington Latimore Liberty Menallen Mount Joy Mount Pleasant Oxford Reading Straban Tyrone Union


Aspers Cashtown Flora Dale Gardners Hampton Heidlersburg Hunterstown Idaville Lake Heritage Lake Meade McKnightstown Midway Orrtanna Table Rock

Unincorporated communities

Barlow Beechersville Bermudian Bittinger Cross Keys Fairplay Graefenburg Greenmount Iron Springs Knoxlyn Maria Furnace Mount Tabor Peach Glen Round Top Tillie Two Taverns Wenksville

Ghost town


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 Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

Harrisburg (capital)


Index Delegations Government History Geography Geology Law Pennsylvanians State parks Symbols Tourist attractions


Agriculture Culture Crime Demographics Economy Education Gambling Politics Sports

Metro areas

Altoona Baltimore-Washington Erie Harrisburg–Carlisle Johnstown Lancaster Lebanon Lehigh Valley New York Philadelphia Pittsburgh Reading Scranton‑Wilkes-Barre State College Williamsport York-Hanover

Largest cities

Allentown Altoona Bethlehem Butler Chester DuBois Easton Erie Greensburg Harrisburg Hazleton Johnstown Lancaster Lebanon McKeesport New Castle Philadelphia Pittsburgh Pottsville Reading Scranton Sunbury Wilkes-Barre Williamsport York

Largest municipalities

Abington Bensalem Bethel Park Bristol Cheltenham Cranberry Darby Falls Hampden Haverford Hempfield Lower Macungie Lower Makefield Lower Merion Lower Paxton Manheim McCandless Middletown Millcreek Township Monroeville Mount Lebanon Norristown Northampton North Huntingdon Penn Hills Radnor Ridley Ross Shaler Spring State College Tredyffrin Upper Darby Upper Merion Warminster West Chester Whitehall York Township


Allegheny Mountains Allegheny National Forest Allegheny Plateau Atlantic Coastal Plain Bald Eagle Valley Blue Ridge Central Coal Region Cumberland Valley Delaware Valley Dutch Country Eastern Endless Mountains Great Valley Mahoning Valley Happy Valley Laurel Highlands Lehigh Valley Main Line Moshannon Valley Nittany Valley Northeastern Northern Tier Northwestern North Penn Valley Ohio Valley Oil Region Oley Valley Pennsylvania
Highlands Penns Valley Philicon Valley Piedmont Pocono Mountains Ridge and Valley Saucon Valley South Central Southeastern Southern Southwestern Susquehanna Valley Western Wyoming Valley


Adams Allegheny Armstrong Beaver Bedford Berks Blair Bradford Bucks Butler Cambria Cameron Carbon Centre Chester Clarion Clearfield Clinton Columbia Crawford Cumberland Dauphin Delaware Elk Erie Fayette Forest Franklin Fulton Greene Huntingdon Indiana Jefferson Juniata Lackawanna Lancaster Lawrence Lebanon Lehigh Luzerne Lycoming McKean Mercer Mifflin Monroe Montgomery Montour Northampton Northumberland Perry Philadelphia Pike Potter Schuylkill Snyder Somerset Sullivan Susquehanna Tioga Union Venango Warren Washington Wayne Westmoreland Wyoming York

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