The Battle of Gettysburg

1987 words 8 pages
The Battle of Gettysburg

The Battle of Gettysburg was a defining battle of the Civil War. It marked a turning point for the Union as well as for the Confederates, though it was not the final battle to be fought. There were many events prior the actual battle that had led to this clash (Berkin 442). The United States was undergoing great changes in the mid 1800's. Populations in both the North and the south grew tremendously. The main increase from the North was largely due to the many immigrants that flooded the coastal cities. Around 2.8 million immigrants came into the United States between 1850 and 1860. This great increase in immigrants further fueled the industrialization of the Northern states. The new source of labor
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Hill's Corps. Brigadier General's James Archer and Joseph Davis, part of Major General Heth's Division, were ordered to advance on Gettysburg after Heth had observed "minimal resistance." Buford managed to hold off the advance for nearly an hour before they were forced to retreat to McPherson Ridge. Buford's retreating cavalry were met with reinforcements that arrived just in time to relieve them (Williams). Two brigades under the command of General John F. Reynolds took up the defense of the hill (Weeks). Reynolds also sent word to other Corps who were near, the XI and III. While Reynolds was organizing his men for the defense he was shot and killed. This left Major General Abner Doubleday in command of I Corps (Williams). Around noon, Heth's attacking force had been driven back and withdrew back to Herr Ridge. Both sides became quiet as they waited for reinforcements. XI Corps under Major General Oliver Howard arrived and took up the northern defense of the town. The I Corps was still on the western defense. Buford was to cover the flanks. Soon after noon, Brigadier General Robert Rodes division of Ewell's Corps arrived and marched to Oak Hill with Ewell not far behind. General Lee arrived just in time to see the attack begin (Weeks). Lee upon seeing this gave A.P. Hill permission to attack the troops on McPherson Ridge. Jubal Early's division arrived in the northwest and proceeded to flank the Federal XI

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