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Saturday, April 18, 2015

Touring Little Round Top at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

Union General Meade and Confederate General Lee rushed troops into battle positions at Gettysburg  on July 1 and 2. General Lee was looking for a victory on northern soil. General Meade had orders from President Lincoln to defeat Lee and his Army. Each side wanted to claim the best positioned ground for battle

Union Major General Gouverneur Warren, Chief Engineer of the Army of the Potomac, quickly placed his troops at Little Round Top, the extreme southern end of the Union line. just minutes before the Confederates arrived.  

Monument surveys the ground
 below as he plans the defense
 of his assigned position.

 Confederate troops must cross this open area to
 take Little Round Top.

Confederate General John B. Hood commands the assaulting forces.  Wave after wave of Southern soldiers charged up the hill.  More and more Union and Confederate soldiers fell, wounded or dead, during the onslaught.  


Monument sits on the ridge
of Little Round Top.

Pennsylvanians fought hard
to defend their land from
the Confederates.

This spired monument honors

111 New Yorkers were killed,
 wounded or captured at
 Little Round Top.

The 20th Maine, under the command of Colonel Joshua Chamberlain, was positioned at the extreme end of the Union line on Little Round Top.  Confederate troops stormed up the hill repeatedly and were repulsed, each time. The remaining men on both sides were exhausted and the 20th Maine was running out ammunition.  Colonel Chamberlain lined up his soldiers, the gap between each one was wider that he would have liked, but they did cover the assigned position. Chamberlain ordered his men to mount bayonets on their the ends of their rifles and charge down hill, at the advancing Confederates.

in the woods at the center of 
the Union line that held their
line on July 2, 1863.

Colonel Chamberlain, like General Sickles, was not a professional soldier.  He was a former Professor of Rhetoric at Bowdoin College in Maine.  Both officers received orders on July 2 at Gettysburg.  Colonel Chamberlain obeyed orders and rallied his men to repulse wave after wave of Confederate charges on Little Round Top.  General Sickles disobeyed orders.  His decision resulted in Southern troops overrunning Sickles' chosen position and breaching the Union lines at the Peach Tree Orchard.  

Friday, April 17, 2015

Touring the Peach Tree Orchard at Gettysburg

Eric & I see a tour group
on horseback near the
Peach Tree Orchard.

The tour guide waves orange
flags to halt traffic while
 the group crosses the road.

(Several local companies
provide this service.)

General Daniel Sickles, was a politician from New York, not a professional soldier.  With very little military and battlefield experience, Sickles would prove to be a danger to himself, troops under his command (the Third Corps) and the Army of the Potomac.

The Third Corps Monument

General George Meade, commander of the Army of the Potomac, positioned Sickles and the Third Corps south of Cemetery Ridge.  Sickles looked around and saw higher ground nearby. He disobeyed orders and moved his troops  to the Peach Tree Orchard, creating a bulge in the Union lines, with fewer men to defend it.

Seeing an opportunity, Confederate artillery pounded Sickles' lines.  After several hours of enemy shelling,  Confederate troops under the command of General James Longstreet attacked and pushed Sickles' troops across the orchard, breaking the Union's lines. Reinforcements were sent in to cover Sickles' retreat to Cemetery Ridge.

This map shows General
Longstreet's troops breaking
through General Sickles'
lines in the Peach Tree Orchard.

Map by Hal Jespersen


The 7th New Jersey rushed to
reinforce Sickles' collapsing 
lines at the Peach Tree Orchard.

Fighting was fierce around the Trostle Farm.   Hundreds lay wounded and dying around the barn and in the fields.

General Sickles' inability to follow orders lead to the unnecessary loss of Union soldiers and ground on July 2.  


honors the 70th, 71st, 72nd, 73rd &

Confederate General Robert E. Lee continued to plan his offensive for the next day, July 3.

General Sickles was injured in the day's fighting and his right leg was amputated.  General Meade did not court martial him.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

The Gettysburg National Military Park Museum & Visitor Centerin Gettysburg

"It is well that war is so terrible, or we should grow too fond of it."  Confederate General Robert E. Lee

The new Gettysburg National
Military Park Museum &
Visitor Center opened in
in 2008.

The old museum building was emptied and torn down.

This Visitor Center is a lot
bigger than the old one.

Visitors can buy tickets to
view a film, the Cyclorama
& visit the Museum.

The Refreshment Saloon

The Gift Shop is large with a huge variety of souvenirs to choose from.

The Museum's exhibits are wonderfully done. The origins of the Civil War and its first two years are the prelude to the Battle of Gettysburg.

Confederate General Robert E. Lee and the Army of Northern Virginia marched north from Virginia into Pennsylvania in May and June, 1863.  A victory on northern soil would raise spirits in the South and demoralize the North.

Lee's Army's movement was detected and General George G. Meade, newly appointed commander of the Army of the Potomac, rushes troops northward to meet the Confederates.  Among his orders from President Lincoln were to defeat Lee and his Army.

The Confederate lines, in red,
are about five miles long.

The Union lines, in blue, are 
three miles long.

I see that General Meade's 93,921 Union Troops are more concentrated.  Men and supplies can be moved around easily.  General Lee's command totals 71, 699 and the men are more spread out.  It would have to take longer to shift men and supplies up and down the Confederate lines.

The battle at Gettysburg would rage for three days.

After we watched the film, A New Birth of Freedom, Eric and I joined fellow visitors to view the Cyclorama.  Before film and moving pictures, artists painted scenes in the round depicting a timeline of an event.  The very long paintings were mounted on the interior of a viewing area.  Visitors stand in the center of the room to view the multi-part scene before them.

In the 1880s French artist, Paul Philippoteaux, went to Gettysburg to research the three day battle. He walked the battlefield with a guide, spoke with veterans and had photographs taken before he started work on his project. It took a year for Philippoteax and a team of artists to paint the 42 foot by 377 foot Battle of Gettysburg Cyclorama.

Fighting around the Codori 
Farm, south of Gettysburg
on July 2.

The cannons roar...

Frenzied fighting, dead horses,
a broken caisson at Cemetery

The Cyclorama was removed from the old Visitor Center, restored and mounted in the current Visitor Center and Museum.

The Battle of Gettysburg started on July 1.  A total of 165, 620 Union and Confederate soldiers engage in the fighting.  Union troops totaled 93,921.  Confederate troops totaled 71, 699. General Lee's Army of Northern Virginia and General Meade's Army of the Potomac start to disengage as the Confederate assault on Cemetery Hill is repulsed on July 3.

Total estimated casualties: The dead, wounded, missing or captured totaled 51,112 men.
Union losses: 3,155 killed; 14,529 wounded; 5,365 missing or captured    Total: 23,049
Confederate losses: 3,903 killed; 18,735 wounded; 5,425 missing or captured   Total: 28,063

"Ye advocates of war,
come here & look, & answer
what compensation is there
for this carnival of death."
Philadelphia Public Ledger,
July 15, 1863.

was established to provide a
dignified final resting place
for the over 3,000 Union
soldiers who died in three
day battle at Gettysburg

Grocery Shopping at Kennie's Market in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania

The fruit bowl in the kitchen is empty.  The vegetable bin in the refrigerator is empty.  The larder is almost bare.  It's time to go grocery shopping.

Eric punched in "groceries" into the GPS and got a list of stores in the area.  The closest grocery store is Kennie's Market.  I think it's a small corner store.  And, I'm wrong.

Kennie's Market is a
good-size supermarket.

Eric is looking for Morningstar Crumbles.  This soy meat substitute is often not available in smaller supermarkets.  I bet Eric $1.00 that Kennie's Market won't have Crumbles.

Kennie's Market is
employee owned.

I want to find out what
Kennie's Market is
all about.

Fresh Fruits &

Fresh Flowers &

I got a Preferred 

We'll be saving on our
groceries today...

After I give Eric the discount card, I can walk around and take more pictures of the store.

Coffee & Pastries...

A winning combination

Kennie's Market has
a great selection of
gourmet cheeses.

Eric found the Morningside Crumbles he had been looking for.  I paid off my wager with a wrinkled a dollar bill.

Meat & Seafood

The Bulk Foods

Condiments, Pickles,
Salad Dressings

The Candy Aisle

My favorite aisle

Energy Bars,  Ensure,

Special K makes a
protein drink too.

Gluten Free Foods

Paper Goods, Outdoor Bug
Sprays, Campfire &
Barbecue Necessities,
Canning Jars, Pectin

Canned Vegetables

The Health & Beauty

The Pet Food Aisle

Greeting Cards 


Frozen Foods 

Check Outs

Eric bought everything on his shopping list.  I was busy taking pictures and left him alone. Eric likes that.  I'm like the impatient seven year old who just can't figure out why she's in a grocery store. Everything else is more fun than shopping for soy meat substitute.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Dinner at Tommy's Pizza in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania

South Washington Street
is being repaved in front
of the 55th Ohio Volunteer
Infantry Monument.

Tommy's Pizza was recommended
by the docent at the Gettysburg

It's just after 4:00 pm &
the dinner crowd is
starting to arrive.

Eric is happy to see that Tommy's Pizza has a nice selection of craft beers.

He decides on the Sunday

It's an Imperial Stout.

Eric is very pleased with today's choice of beer.  I take a sip and imagine a Stout Float with Vanilla Ice Cream.

Our pizza is topped with
Bacon & Tomatoes.

Ooooh, it's so good!