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Day 3 Tour 1
Spangler's Spring

Early morning union attack is longest sustained action at Gettysburg
... it is determined by the Union hierarchy that the Confederates are way too close to the Union flank—within yards of George Greene’s position on top of the hill. It is decided that when these Union soldiers return, they will “press the envelope” the following morning with an artillery barrage to start as early as 4:00 AM, at a place called Power’s Hill (high ground on the other side of the Baltimore Pike). That attack will be the longest sustained action at Gettysburg. Union soldiers now start attacking the base of this hill, trying to regain what they gave away the night before...

Day 3 Tour 2
East Cavalry Battlefield

Jeb Stuart’s Confederate Cavalry meets General George Armstrong Custer
...The action here takes place about the same time as Pickett’s Charge but it has nothing to do with Pickett’s Charge. The only order that Lee gives Stuart is to guard the Confederate left flank—Richard Ewell’s forces. However, Jeb Stuart, to “press the envelope,” has been pushing farther and farther away from the Confederate left flank, looking to run into something. He knows the Union cavalry screen is out here somewhere. In my opinion, he keeps looking until he finds it; and he finds it on this position...

Day 3 Tour 3
South Cavalry Battlefield

Ill fated union cavalry charge against Confederate right flank
...As early as one o’clock in the afternoon, 1,900 men with four cannons are ordered up this valley on our right to get as close to the Confederate-occupied portions of Big Round Top as possible. They are under the command of a brigadier general by the name of Elon Farnsworth, who is under the orders of Brigadier General Judson Kilpatrick. These men push the Confederate skirmishers back through the valley on our right to a hill called Bushman Hill...

Day 3 Tour 4
Point Of Woods

Confederates array for attack as cannonade precedes epic charge
...This key event should really be called Longstreet’s Assault. After the Confederate defeats on July 2nd, it is Robert E. Lee’s idea to push his center forward against the Union center, hoping to amass enough firepower at the Union center to break through and expand the gap in the line, thereby cutting the Union battle line in half. Lee gives that order to James Longstreet, who commands a third of Lee’s army and is Lee’s most trusted lieutenant—especially after the death of Stonewall Jackson in May of 1863. It is Longstreet who puts this plan together. He places 13,000 men in battle line to assault the Union center. He also arranges for 152 Confederate cannons to fire at the Union center and weaken it prior to the Confederate assault...

Day 3 Tour 5
Emmitsburg Road

Blood pools by roadside fences as union cannons fire on Pickett’s stalled men
...Coming down the Emmitsburg Road is a portion of Barksdale’s Brigade, which has broken the Union position at The Peach Orchard. Not only do the Confederates push through the gap that they create, but they also try to expand the gap laterally, with the help of an Alabama brigade on their left flank under the command of Brigadier General Cadmus Wilcox. Cadmus Wilcox’s brigade advances from the west and goes right through that farmhouse (the Klingle farm). Their advance comes through there, with Barksdale’s Brigade to their right (closer to the Round Tops). This is the gap the Confederates create—almost a quarter of a mile here—as they drive the Union soldiers back through the woods to our front. Those woods (the Trostle Wood Lot) were here at the time of the battle, but they were a lot thinner than they are today. That’s pretty much where the Confederate advance stalls, to some extent...

Day 3 Tour 6
The Angle

Pickett’s charge culminates at the bloody angle
...What you see in the distance—the monument of Robert E. Lee on his horse Traveler—is the position where Lee viewed the action on that July 3rd (in that little wooded cul-de-sac). The Confederates fire from this position for nearly two hours (1:00-3:00 PM) with 152 Confederate cannons that are pushed out of the tree line that you see in front of you. From the Union side, 122 cannons answer. That’s 274 cannons firing at each other for nearly two hours. At three o’clock the guns grow silent. Ten minutes later, 13,000-15,000 Confederates emerge from the tree line in front of you. Their battle line stretches well over a mile (literally from horizon to horizon, from right to left). The reason we have a discrepancy in the numbers is because there are about 13,000 Confederates who converge to attack this position. If we add the two brigades supporting George Pickett’s division on the right flank (David Lang’s Florida brigade and Cadmus Wilcox’s Alabama brigade), then there are 15,000 men...

Day 3 Tour 7
Soldier's National Cemetery

Final resting place of 3,512 Union dead dedicated by Abraham Lincoln
...On July 10th, just a few days after the Battle of Gettysburg, the War Governor of the State of Pennsylvania, Andrew Curtin, came to Gettysburg to view the carnage. He was given a tour of this battlefield by a 32-year old attorney by the name of David Wills. What the Governor of Pennsylvania saw sickened him. There were 8,900 men who died on the field without seeing a doctor. Two thousand more died at Gettysburg hospitals over the next 60 days. The majority of the 8,900 men who died of terrible wounds on this battlefield were pretty much buried where they fell. Right after the Battle of Gettysburg, there were days of rain that washed out the graves. There were puddles with arms and legs and skulls sticking out of the mud...

-Tours are-recorded on
the Battlefield

Gary Kross, author and businessman, is one of the most popular Licensed Battlefield Guides at the Gettysburg National Battlefield Park. A member of the advisory board of Blue & Gray magazine, he published special editions of that magazine in 1988, 1995, 1996 and 1997 on the Battle of Gettysburg. His vivid battlefield tours provide a level of dramatic realism to Virtual Gettysburg.

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Download a free PDF file of your favorite Virtual Gettysburg Poster. The first 11x17 poster displays panoramas from the 21 battlefield tours, and the second displays the Gettysburg Address and a large panorama of the Soldiers National Cemetery at Gettysurg.

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