Gettysburg--Culp's Hill and Cemetery Hill

By Harry W. Pfanz | Go to book overview

12
BLUNDER ON THE RIGHT

The command structure of the Twelfth Corps at Gettysburg was an awkward thing, justifiable for a brief time, perhaps, but beyond that a mischief-making incongruity. The immediate problem went back to the Pipe Creek Circular. In order to implement its provisions, General Meade had appointed General Slocum to command both the Twelfth and Fifth corps, the army's "right wing" as Slocum saw it. Although the circular's provisions were never implemented insofar as the withdrawal of the army to Pipe Creek was concerned, Slocum considered himself to be a wing commander throughout the battle. If every echelon of the corps was to have a commander then, four officers in the chain of command had to step up one rank in an acting capacity. General Williams, who ranked second to Slocum in the corps, became its acting commander in Slocum's stead. Brig. Gen. Thomas H. Ruger, commander of the Third Brigade of the First Division, moved up to Williams's place as commander of that division, Col. Silas Colgrove of the 27th Indiana Regiment took command of Ruger's brigade, and Lt. Col. John R. Fesler received temporary command of the regiment. 1

As it happened, the Fifth Corps remained under Slocum's command for only a short time before passing from Slocum's control on the afternoon of 2 July, if not before, when Meade ordered it from reserve behind the right to the battle on the Union left. Yet Slocum's "wing" organization continued in effect, even though the wing consisted of only the Twelfth Corps and units sent to its assistance. This meant that Williams, Ruger, and Colgrove continued in their acting assignments throughout the battle. This added echelon in the Twelfth Corps command was to increase awk

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Gettysburg--Culp's Hill and Cemetery Hill
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page ii
  • Contents vii
  • Maps ix
  • Illustrations xi
  • Preface xv
  • Acknowledgments xvii
  • 1 - The Generals and Their Armies 1
  • 2 - The Only Position 15
  • 3 - Ewell and Howard Collide 31
  • 4 - Retreat to Cemetery Hill 45
  • 5 - The Rebels Take the Town 59
  • 6 - Ewell Hesitates 71
  • 7 - Slocum and Hancock Reach the Field 88
  • 8 - Getting Ready for the Fight 106
  • 9 - Skirmishers, Sharpshooters, and Civilians 129
  • 10 - Brinkerhoff's Ridge 153
  • 11 - The Artillery, 2 July 168
  • 12 - Blunder on the Right 190
  • 13 - Johnson Attacks! 205
  • 14 - Early Attacks Cemetery Hill 235
  • 15 - Cemetery Hill- the Repulse 263
  • 16 - Culp's Hill- Johnson's Assault, 3 July 284
  • 17 - The Last Attacks 310
  • 18 - Counterattacks near Spangler's Spring 328
  • 19 - 3 July, Mostly Afternoon 353
  • 20 - Epilogue 365
  • Appendix A - Spangler's Spring 377
  • Appendix B - Two Controversies 379
  • Appendix C - Order of Battle: Army of the Potomac and Army of Northern Virginia, 1-3 July 1863 383
  • Notes 407
  • Bibliography 471
  • Index 489
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