At an early hour on the morning of the 3d, I received an order, through a staff officer of the brigadier general commanding the division, to move, at once, my command, and follow the First Brigade on the road leading from Two Taverns to Gettysburg. Agreeably to the above instructions, my column was formed and moved out on the road designated, when a staff officer of Brigadier General Gregg, commanding Second Division, ordered me to take my command and place it in position on the pike leading from York to Gettysburg, which position formed the extreme right of our battle on that day. Upon arriving at the point designated, I immediately placed my command in position, facing toward Gettysburg. At the same time I caused reconnoissances to be made on my front, right and rear, but failed to discover any considerable force of the enemy. Everything remained quiet till ten A. M., when the enemy appeared on my right flank, and opened upon me with a battery of six guns. Leaving two guns and a regiment to hold my first position, and cover the road leading to Gettysburg, I shifted the remaining portion of my command, forming a new line of battle at right angles to my former line. The enemy had obtained correct range of my new position, and were pouring solid shot and shell into my command with great accuracy. Placing two sections of Battery M, Second (regular) Artillery, in position, I ordered them to silence the enemy's battery, which order, notwithstanding the superiority of the enemy's position, was successfully accomplished in a very short space of time. My line, as it then existed, was shaped like the letter L, the shorter branch, formed of the section of Battery M, supported by four squadrons of the Sixth Michigan Cavalry, faced towards Gettysburg, covering the Gettysburg pike; the long branch, composed of the remaining two sections of Battery M, Second Artillery, supported by a portion of the Sixth Michigan Cavalry, on the right, while the Seventh Michigan Cavalry, still further to the right and in advance, was held in readiness to repel any attack the enemy might make coming on the Oxford road. The Fifth Michigan Cavalry was dismounted, and ordered to take position in front of my centre and left. The First Michigan Cavalry was held in columns of squadrons to observe the movements of the enemy.
This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
1 It seems, however, that a disinterested, and, therefore, more reliable authority --the Comte de Paris — has estimated the numbers of the Confederate cavalry at from one-third to one-half greater than those given above. It has been well said by a recent writer, referring to the statement made by Stuart in his report that the two brigades, which did not accompany him into Pennsylvania, were strong in point of numbers: “As a rule, the forces on the Southern side are made out to be so nearly non-existent, that one thinks of them as a shadowy army, like the ghostly troops which pass before the Emperor in the French picture of the Revue des Morts.”
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.