Gettysburg -- The First Day

By Harry W. Pfanz | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 15
Daniel Strikes Stone

Col. Roy Stone’s brigade of Pennsylvania regiments was a keystone in the line of the Union First Corps. It had been intended that it form on the right of the Iron Brigade and McPherson Woods facing west. The arrival of Rodes’s division changed that. After Rodes’s troops appeared on Oak Hill, two of Stone’s three regiments faced north to confront them. Thus, the brigade formed a bastion and a link between the First Corps troops in McPherson Woods and those in Sheads’s Woods on Oak Ridge.

Stone’s brigade numbered about 1,200 officers and men. All three regiments—the 143d, 149th, and 150th—were from Pennsylvania; two, the 149th and 150th, bore the title “Bucktails” and wore deer tails curled around their caps in imitation of Stone’s former regiment, the 13th Pennsylvania Reserves, the original Bucktails. Stone, who had been a major in the 13th, had intended to form a brigade of marksmen modeled after the original Bucktails. However, if that project was not dead already, it must have bled to death at Gettysburg. In August 1862 Colonel Stone had recruited and received command of the 149th. He took command of the brigade in February 1863, and Lt. Col. Walton Dwight, nicknamed “Old Gobble ’em Up” since Chancellorsville, stepped into command of the 149th. The brigade’s third regiment, the 143d, did not aspire to the Bucktail name, but in no way was it inferior to its comrades. All three regiments participated in a limited way at Chancellorsville, but Gettysburg would be their first major trial in battle.1

When his brigade arrived on the west arm of McPherson Ridge, on the Iron Brigade’s right, Colonel Stone placed the 150th between the McPherson house and the woods. Its right connected with the 143d posted by the house and barn. The 149th was on the brigade right with “two-thirds” of

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Gettysburg -- The First Day
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Maps ix
  • Illustrations xi
  • Preface xiii
  • Acknowledgments xvii
  • Introduction - Fredericksburg to the Potomac 1
  • Chapter 1 - Ewell’s Raid 10
  • Chapter 2 - Lee’s Army Concentrates 21
  • Chapter 3 - Meade’s Pursuit 30
  • Chapter 4 - Meade and Reynolds 43
  • Chapter 5 - Reconnaissance in Force 51
  • Chapter 6 - Reynolds’s Final and Finest Hour 69
  • Chapter 7 - Cutler’s Cock Fight 80
  • Chapter 8 - McPherson Woods 91
  • Chapter 9 - The Railroad Cut 102
  • Chapter 10 - Noon Lull 115
  • Chapter 11 - Howard and the Eleventh Corps 131
  • Chapter 12 - Ewell and Rodes Reach the Field 145
  • Chapter 13 - Oak Ridge 157
  • Chapter 14 - Daniel’s and Ramseur’s Brigades Attack 179
  • Chapter 15 - Daniel Strikes Stone 194
  • Chapter 16 - Schurz Prepares for Battle 214
  • Chapter 17 - Early’s Division Attacks 227
  • Chapter 18 - Gordon and Doles Sweep the Field 239
  • Chapter 19 - The Brickyard Fight 258
  • Chapter 20 - Heth Attacks 269
  • Chapter 21 - Retreat from McPherson Ridge 294
  • Chapter 22 - Seminary Ridge 305
  • Chapter 23 - Retreat through the Town 321
  • Chapter 24 - Cemetery Hill 331
  • Chapter 25 - Epilogue 350
  • Appendix A - John Burns 357
  • Appendix B - The Color Episode of the 149Th P.V.I 360
  • Appendix C - Children of the Battlefield 367
  • Appendix D - Order of Battle 370
  • Notes 381
  • Bibliography 437
  • Index 459
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