The Battle of Gettysburg
The American Civil War started in 1861because the Northern and Southern part of the United States fought for westward expansion and slavery. When Abe Lincoln was elected in the election of 1860, it caused seven states to secede or leave the South. Four more states joined them and left after the first shots of the Civil War. Four years of fighting took place in battles like Bull Run, Antietam, and Chancellorsville. I stopped at Chancellorsville because the next battle is Gettysburg. I will be talking about this brutal battle.
The Battle of Gettysburg was the largest and most famous battle in the American Civil War. This battle took place in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania and last approximately 3 days (July 1 through July 3 1863). It was such an influential battle that it led to the result of too who won the Civil War.
Before the fight had even started, cities like Baltimore and Pittsburg were under a threat of being attacked by General Robert E. Lee and his Confederate Army (Southern States). The Union and its new commander, General George G. Meade, were trying to stop the attack.
June 30th, that morning, a whole bunch of Confederate troops headed toward the sweet town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. The commander looked through his glasses and spotted Federal cavalry that were heading toward Gettysburg. The Confederate Army fled but would be back the following morning. The Union were also outnumbered and still managed to move the Confederates back. This was going to be a close battle.
“The following morning, July 1 (start of the battle), divisions of Confederate Army were headed back to Gettysburg. They ran into Federal cavalry again. Events would quickly escalate but General Robert E. Lee fought with about 25,000 and General George Meade had less than 20,000 men.”(www.historyplace.com)
The Federals and their cavalry were pushed back all throughout Gettysburg. After this, General Lee told General Ewell to take hold of high ground so that the Federals wouldn’t be able to sneak up on them. But General Ewell hesitated to perform the attack so the Union could possibly go along Cemetery Ridge and bring in reinforcements such as guns, cannons, and mortars. Instead during this time, General Meade was regrouping troops and supplies. He was able to total 100,000 men to arrive.
Lee thought that his army was the best and could not loose and he was missing his cavalry which helps to see and hear during the movement of all of the opponent’s troops. “ The cavalry leader had gone with his troops to harass the Federals.” So General Lee came up with a plan. The plan was to attack the Northern army’s defense position.
The next morning, July 2nd, Robert E, Lee ordered General Longstreet to attack the Union’s defense position. Longstreet took so much time to gather his troops the he didn’t perform the attack until 4 p.m. “When the attack broke out, some of the harshest fighting of the Civil War had already taken place. In places like Little Round Top, Devil’s Den, and Peach Orchard. General Longstreet took over Peach Orchard but wasn’t able to go through Little Round Top because of a very observant General Warren for the Union that smelled General Longstreet’s attack plan. This fight lasted until dark and the Confederate’s were unsuccessful. Although the Union was able to hold their ground, they did lose some but managed to hold Cemetery Ridge (defense position).
Both the Confederate’s and the Union regrouped and brought in more and more supplies and soldiers to fight. Although they were regrouping, the generals on both sides were planning for what they didn’t know was the last day of this historic battle.
General George Meade