The Gettysburg Campaign, June-July 1863

The Gettysburg Campaign, June-July 1863

The Gettysburg Campaign, June-July 1863

The Gettysburg Campaign, June-July 1863


The climactic event in America's national epic took place at the small Pennsylvania town of Gettysburg. A search for shoes by bare-footed Confederate soldiers led to the biggest battle ever fought in the Western Hemisphere, and to one of the defining moments in the development of the national character.

On the first day of the battle of Gettysburg, the Union captured the high ground and found good defensive positions. The Confederates inflicted heavy casualties, maintained the initiative, and prevented the full co-ordination of their opponents.

Tactical deployments made under fire by commanders on the first day at Gettysburg decisively shaped the battle to come, and the final fate of two mighty armies. July 1, 1863 saw the sacrifice of the Union's Iron Brigade to halt the advancing Confederates, the death of John Reynolds, the highest ranking Union officer killed in the war, and the repulse of the Union I and XI Corps. On a day of mixed results, July 1 saw a turning point in the history of the U.S. Cavalry, as Indian fighter John Buford introduced tactics of mobility and dismounted fire that were to become the hallmark of the Union horseman.

-- The most detailed regimental-level account ever written of the crucial first day of the battle of Gettysburg.

-- The result of exhaustive research, including the discovery of previously unknown Confederate archives.

-- A powerful narrative backed up by specially prepared maps and a definitive order of battle.

"This book is big -- a marathon -- but it had to be big enough to include a vigorous narrative, myriad delicious anecdotes, and examinations of controversies. Dave Martin's book is big enough to inform and entertain. Hecarefully mines the large mountain of Gettysburg's human interest and appeal. The maps deserve special mention -- they are truly exceptional and beautifully clear. say more would only repeat the deserved superlatives I've al


When the Union began to come apart in late 1860 and early 1861, as the Southern states sought to create a new nation out of the fabric of the old, no one on either side of the secession issue had any firm notion of the consequences. Many, both North and South, believed it would not come to a clash of arms. But the questions at issue were too serious and too emotionally ladened to avoid a struggle. Neither the integrity of the Union nor slavery were issues over which men were any longer willing to compromise. So there was war, the bloodiest and greatest in the American experience.

By the summer of 1863 the American people had suffered through two years of bloody civil war with little to show for it.

For the Union it had been a frustrating time. Great armies had repeatedly marched southwards with hopes high for a swift victory, only to be beaten back in defeat and disgrace. Some, a few, despaired, whether from conviction or political expediency, saying that the war was not worth pursuing any further. But the spirit of the nation remained remarkably firm, sustained by the indomitable will of President Lincoln, and fueled by the Emancipation Proclamation. Despite numerous reverses in the Eastern Theater, there were victories in the West. And the Union remained strong. The enormous agricultural, industrial, and financial resources of the North had been mobilized and production of the munitions of war had soared. Adroit diplomacy had averted foreign recognition of the rebellious South. A powerful navy had been . . .

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