This print depicts the High Tide at Gettysburg on July 3, 1863. Most of the flags shown in this painting are standard Confederate battle flags, with the 9th Virginia Infantry seen in the center and the 56th Virginia Infantry found in the background. To the right, is the regimental flag of the 72nd Pennsylvania and the state issue flag of the 71st Pennsylvania. The 72nd was a semi-zouave regiment, but had lost most of their distinctive uniform by this time. The only remnants were the low, white canvas gaiters containing four buckles on each side. These can be seen on two of the soldiers in the right background. The Cloverleaf and number 69 on the hat of the soldier fighting in the right foreground identifies him as a soldier of the 69th PA.
The largest and costliest of the Seven Days battles near Richmond was Gaines’ Mill. Lee’s first victory came when the Texas Brigade broke the Federal line but incurred great losses in the process. The next morning, Jackson and Lee surveyed the ground where the Confederates had charged. Jackson exclaimed, “The men who carried this position were soldiers indeed!”
The 54th Massachusetts Infantry was the first volunteer black regiment raised in the North. The ranks were filled with former slaves and freedmen, all sharing the same dream of serving their country. Under the tutelage of its firebrand colonel, Robert Gould Shaw, the 54th became a model of perfection in drill and camp. Their true test came in battle, a suicidal assault on Battery Wagner on the South Carolina coast. Killed on the ramparts of the fort, Shaw was buried in an unmarked grave with the casualties of his regiment.
Lieutenant Colonel Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain at Fredericksburg, December 13, 1862. At Fredericksburg, Chamberlain and the 20th Maine experienced sacrifice and defeat. The men from Maine pushed their way over the bodies of their fallen comrades to within a stone’s throw from the Southern line before they were forced to find cover on the littered slopes below Marye’s Heights. There they stayed in the bitter cold all night and all day, lying amid the bodies of the dead. Finally, on the afternoon of the next day, they were recalled for the retreat of the Federal army. It was a harrowing and heart-rending exposure to the worst of war for Chamberlain and his men. Yet, they had proven their mettle. The valor they and other troops from the Army of the Potomac displayed at Fredericksburg would become one of the war’s most memorable and heroic sagas.
When Lincoln was invited to make his speech, Americans were still trying to recover from the shock of 51,000 casualties incurred at the battle of Gettysburg a few months earlier. Lincoln did not scribble the speech on the back of an envelope as later mythologized, but had instead written it a week or two earlier on White House stationery, and then polished it at Gettysburg the night before the event.
At 10 a.m. on Thursday, November 19, 1863, 15,000 people listened as Edward Everett delivered a rousing two-hour patriotic speech. In contrast, when Lincoln arose, attired in a new black suit, he delivered a surprisingly brief speech. It consisted of 272 words and required no more than two minutes to deliver. He was interrupted by applause only twice, but his audience knew when he finished that they had witnessed an epic event.
This painting depicts the charges of Wade Hampton and George Armstrong Custer on the East Cavalry Field on July 3, 1863. The two forces charged headlong at each other at about 3:30 in the afternoon. The Union charged northeast and the Confederates southwest, accounting for the sunlight coming from behind them from the west. They hit with such force that the impact of horses and men was heard a mile away, tumbling them end over end. Wade Hampton, the South Carolinian and chief lieutenant of J.E.B. Stuart, led the charge of the Confederates and was badly wounded in the ensuing melee.
This print depicts Gen. Winfield S. Hancock and and his staff. The term "fighting general" would aptly apply to Hancock. "He is magnificent in appearance, lordly, but cordial," a member of his staff wrote. Hancock differed "from other officers I have served with in being always in sight during action."
By any measure of the war, the greatest Southern victories were the product of the Lee-Jackson relationship. Both were men of character. Both were devoted to a shared faith. Both were uniquely gifted military commanders. Lee granted Jackson an exceptional degree of command freedom, and Jackson faithfully exercised that freedom to maximum results. Victory became the expected achievement of every endeavor by Lee and Jackson. In the spring of 1863, the remarkable relationship would end with Jackson's untimely death following his wounding at Chancellorsville. Lee would continue to display his unsurpassed military genius, but never again would be blessed with a subordinate like Jackson. "Stonewall" Jackson was irreplaceable. The Jackson and Lee relationship was build on more than ability - it was founded on faith, mutual respect and the discipline of character. Such was the legacy of Jackson and Lee.