But before all that happened, those charges happened and we were there.
Several of the Canadian Medal of Honor recipients would fight at Gettysburg. Each of these earned their medals from actions either before or after that conflict. One recipient who fought at Gettysburg and captured several sets of enemy artillery guns and a handful of POW's would later move to Montreal as a US Consul, and remain there for about 30 yrs if memory serves right. His family would grow and a son would become a major newspaper editor. Many Confederate officers including Lee sought refuge after the war in Canada.
A few days ago I visited the very spot where George Pickett's Confederates, some15,000 strong waited for the Union cannons to stop their deadly fire. They were in a line almost a mile long. When the heaviest shelling let off a little Pickett gave the orders and his men rode into history. They advances almost 3/4's of a mile across very open fields into the slaughter. Over 6500 would soon be casualties of an attack many of the officers knew was lost before it started. The Union would have about 1,500 of its own casualties.
As past blogs have noted, perhaps as many as 700 Canadians may have participated in the three days of battle at the small town of Gettysburg. Checking those blogs will show an indication of Canadians from many provinces being wounded or killed that early July of 1863.
Had the battle at Little Round Top gone the other way the day before, there would have been no Pickett's Charge as the South would have taken the battle and moved forward. But history shows that they did not take Little Round Top, had to make the charge of the following day and then got routed and repelled from Northern soil.
A past blog brought you the story of the actual Medal of Honor surfacing most recently that was awarded back in the 1890's to Colonel Chamberlain for his heroism in this battle. Google his name to day to find the story. Just yesterday he again made news when the new owners of that medal, a museum in Maine, had announced that they will indeed be putting it on public display in the months to come. The Colonel's name sake... who happens to have the same name...and lives in Gettysburg to boot, re-enacts the Chamberlain story and is pictured above giving his CW era salute. He told me a most interesting story that I will bring to you at a later date.
This series of photos was taken from on top of Little Round Top. It is obvious that the hill gave whoever occupied it an excellent view of what was going on with the enemy for miles.
The next blog will cover a couple of aspects of the Congressional Medal of Honor Society's convention that took place in Gettysburg a few days back.
Please stay tuned, and a note of apology for the latest of this blog. Computer issues and being exhausted from a few days of various activities prevented its getting posted on time.
cheers from Bethesda Maryland.