I left my friend Mike H's house and in less than three hours was at Gettysburg. I unloaded Scarlett from the trailer and proceeded to ride with her through the Auto Tour that's laid out by the National Park Service.
I am pretty sure this war monument, for the soldiers who served
in the Pennsylvania Regiments of the Union Army, is the largest one
of many monuments in the Gettysburg Military National Park.
Above is a pano of the view the Union Forces had as the men
of Pickett's Division stepped off towards them in the famed "Pickett's Charge".
Think about it, those Confederate Soldiers marched over a mile, under
heavy fire, and some actually managed to reach the Union positions!
Above is the Southerner's view of the hill where the Union Forces
awaited them before Pickett's Charge.
My main objective was to see the site where the 20th Maine Infantry Regiment had made its famed stand against attack by Confederate forces. Why was this unit singled out? You can google it for full details but in brief summary: They held the position of the extreme left flank of the Union Army as it was arrayed to defend against Lee's Army of Northern Virginia.
Had the 20th Maine failed to hold, the Confederate Army forces would have "rolled up" the Union flank and inflicted yet another major defeat to the United States. Colonel Joshua Chamberlain, the commander of the 20th Maine, and his actions before, during and after have been made mandatory study by Army officers.
The movie "Gettysburg" based on the book "Killer Angels" by Michael Shaara was a pretty close approximation of the book and illustrates nicely the actions of Colonel Chamberlain and his regiment. "Charmberlain's Charge" is worth your time to read as well.
The tour finally reached the site of Little Round Top, the hill that the 20th Maine defended and after some walking around in the heat, I finally found what I believe was the section where the 20th earned its fame.
Above is a glimpse of the terrain the soldiers of the 20th Maine
looked down towards and from which emerged the soldiers
of the 15th Alabama Regiment.
Memorial monument for the 20th Maine, sited I believe at the position where
the union flank hung "in the air".....
Rock walls mark, I think, where the 20th Maine's soldiers formed ranks
to pour fire onto the oncoming Rebel troops.
Information plaque about the 20th Maine and its commander
I finished the tour shortly after walking about the site of Little Round Top, loaded up Scarlett and continued onwards towards Virginia.
I would end up spending the next three days and nights with friends from my college days, ROTC Cadets that I have remained friends with for over three decades. But, that's another post.