Wednesday, July 03, 2013

The LuLac Edition #2462, July 3rd, 2013

Rendering of Battle of Gettysburg. (Photo:

You learned about this battle in school. In 1963 on the 100th anniversary of the battle, I learned about it in grade school. Through the years, I learned more and began to appreciate the scope of the carnage. I’ve seen TV documentaries about the famous battle but as a citizen you don’t get an appreciation for what an immense sacrifice it was until you walk the fields there. It was a war that pit brother against brother. It is ironic that it was fought in the days leading up to the anniversary of the founding of our country. 
One of the compromises of the birth of our country was the elimination of the slavery paragraph championed by John Adams. It was the only way to get Independence e. In the play “1776” the character playing Benjamin Franklin, (Howard Da Silva) was heard to remark, “Revolutions come into this world like bastard children, half improvised and half compromised." The Civil War was full payment for that improvisation and compromise. 
Here’s a brief history of those terrible three days: The Battle of Gettysburg was fought July 1–3, 1863, in and around the town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania between 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. Union Maj. Gen. George Gordon Meade's Army of the Potomac defeated attacks by Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia, ending Lee's invasion of the North. After his success at Chancellorsville in Virginia in May 1863, Lee led his army through the 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 moved his army in pursuit, but was relieved 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 town to the hills just to the south. 
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, demonstrations escalated into full-scale assaults on 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, July 3, 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 losses to the Confederate army. 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. That November, President Lincoln used the dedication ceremony for the Gettysburg National Cemetery to honor the fallen Union soldiers and redefine the purpose of the war in his historic Gettysburg Address. (


At 9:34 AM, Anonymous JUNCTION said...

Let's all hope and pray this will never happen in the USA again.
God bless us all. Regardless of our views on how our government is being administered we still live in the greatest country in the world.

Happy 4th.


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