The battle of Gettysburg was a three day battle fought between the Confederate and Union forces during the American Civil War. The battle was fought on 1 July 1863 to 3 July 1863 in and around the town of Gettysburg situated in Pennsylvania. The largest number of casualties was involved in this battle in the entire war and is at times, also described as the turning point in the war. In this battle the Confederate General Robert E. Lee’s Army of North Virginia attacked the Union Major General Meade’s Army of the Potomac. The battle resulted in the defeat of the Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee eventually the invasion of Lee toward the North was halted.
On May 1863, after the success at Chancellorsville in Virginia, Lee and his army invaded through Shenandoah Valley to start his second invasion of the North -the Gettysburg Campaign. The Army of Lee was in high spirit. Thus, Lee intended to shift the concern on influencing Northern Politicians on giving up their prosecution of the war over the summer campaign from war-ravaged North Virginia. The intention of the war was to penetrate to as far as Harrisburg, Pennsylvania or if possible even Philadelphia. Major Gen. Joseph Hooker had to move his army in pursuit, prodded by the President Lincoln.
The elements of the two forces finally collides against each other on July 1, 1863 at Gettysburg. Lee urgently concentrated the forces of his army there. The objective was to engage or to stop the Union army and to destroy it. The Union cavalry division under the supervision of Brig. Gen. John Buford initially successfully defended the low ridges to the northwest of town. John Buford was soon joined and reinforced by two corps of the Union Infantry.Thetwo large confederate corps was able to assault the enemies from the northwest and north. This collapsed the developed Union lines, and the defenders were sent retreating through the town streets to the hills in the south.
Day two of the battle both the armies had assembled. The positioning of the Union army was strongly established from Culp hill to cemetery ridge. Lee advised to attack the Union where they stood without following the suggestion of his second in command James Longstreet who was proposed to be defensive minded. Lee ordered Longstreet to attack the on the federals from the left and Ewell’s Corps from the right near Culp’s hill. Heavy casualties were experienced by both the armies on the second day of battle and they are roughly reckoned as 9000 on each side.
On the third day of war July 3, 1863, Union forces early in the morning pushed back the Confederate after seven hours of rigorous firefight and held back their strong position. Around 3 pm artillery bombarding by over 150 Confederate guns nearly killed, over half of the 1500 troops sent by Lee and stopped the rebels from advancing. This loss eventually pressurized Lee to shore up the defensive line of their army after they failed the assault of the troops.
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