Chapter 30: Pickett's charge.
The infantry is moved up nearer to the edge of the Ridge
A blast of air lifts the smoke.
‘Here they come!
Here they come!
Here comes the infantry,’ is heard on every side.
's splendid division moves out to cross the interval between the two low-lying ridges occupied by the opposing armies, on that magnificent charge which has extorted the admiration, unqualified, of their foes and which won the position aimed for but could not hold it.
's division crosses the Emmetsburg Road
and comes sweeping up the slope, they still bear everything before them, as if carried forward by an all-ruling fate.
Their right flank just touches the Cordora house
The left, a hundred and fifty rods away, is slightly in advance.
Three lines of battle are moving up
As they cross the road only 800 yards away, huge gaps begin to show in their lines as a result of the effective fire of the Union
artillery, but they are quickly closed up in magnificent style, and the line still advances.
At 300 yards canister takes the place of shell and their men fall like leaves in the Autumn gale, but the great mass silently, swiftly moves forward.
They are approaching the ‘little oak grove’ in front of which, behind a stone-wall, lies Webb
's brigade of Pennsylvanians.
The advancing columns close in on the infantry.
With a yell they rush forward.
A sheet of flame welcomes them and in its warm grasp their line melts like ice. Being obliged to cross a fence oblique to their line of advance, the rebels are crowded and closed in mass in the endeavor to regain their formation.
It is seen that Webb
cannot firmly hold his men against the shock of that fierce charge, although he throws himself, with reckless courage, in front of them to face the storm and beg,