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The Annals of the Civil War Written by Leading Participants North and South (ed. Alexander Kelly McClure), General Meade at Gettysburg. (search)
in Virginia, he ordered the advance of his army, under Ewell, into Maryland; and on the 24th and 25th, his two remaining corps, under Longstreet and Hill, crossed the Potomac at Williamsport and Shepherdstown, and followed Ewell, who had already advanced into Pennsylvania as far as Chambersburg. The Army of the Potomac crossed on the 25th and 26th, at Edwards' Ferry, and was concentrated in the neighborhood of Frederick, Maryland. It was under these circumstances that, at two A. M. of June 28th, General Meade, still in command of the Fifth Corps, received from General Hardie, of the War Department, the order of the President placing him in command of the Army of the Potomac. This order was a complete surprise to General Meade, and it is not too much to say that by it he was suddenly called to a position in which, for a time, the fate of the country was in his hands. One false step now, and the Union cause was lost; for if Lee had succeeded in his plans for this campaign, the ca
The Annals of the Civil War Written by Leading Participants North and South (ed. Alexander Kelly McClure), The campaign of Gettysburg. (search)
hould have the cavalry so placed that he would not be able to escape us. General Meade then decided to leave the affair with me, and, as I expected, three or four days after, near a place called Hanover, Kilpatrick's Division met Stuart's command loaded down with plunder, which was recaptured, and, after a severe fight, Stuart was compelled to make such a detour that he only joined Lee at Gettysburg on the second day of the battle, July 2d. The Army of the Potomac was in motion by the 28th of June, moving north from Frederick City. In arranging the line of march of the different corps, I was impressed with the idea that General Meade considered that General Lee would move toward Harrisburg and cross the river in that vicinity. He spoke of it to me more than once. I could not believe it, although General Longstreet states that, at one time, General Lee did entertain that idea. The general line of march of the army was too much to the east for a rapid concentration on Gettysburg,
The Annals of the Civil War Written by Leading Participants North and South (ed. Alexander Kelly McClure), The mistakes of Gettysburg. (search)
handling of the artillery massed at the peach orchard, and under cover of which Pickett was to make his charge. Colonel Walton was a brave and capable officer, and I regret that my narrative was so construed as to reflect upon his fair and spotless record. There were two or three trifling inaccuracies in my first account of this battle which need correction: The scout, upon whose information the head of our column was turned to the right, reported at Chambersburg on the night of the 28th of June. It is printed the 29th. Several orders that I issued on the 1st of July, and so dated, appear under the date of the 18th. The real strength of Pickett's Division was four thousand five hundred bayonets. It was printed five thousand five hundred. In the paragraph where I stated that General Meade anticipated my attack of the 3d, and told General Hancock that he intended to throw the Fifth and Sixth Corps against its flanks when it was made, it is printed that he gave this information