Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Longstreet - Gettysburg

The monument to Confederate Lt. General James Longstreet stands in fog among Pitzer Woods at Gettysburg. The monument, placed on the battlefield in 1998, is unusual for at least three reasons: First, it stands flush to the ground, no high pedestal. Second, it took nearly a century to reach completion after first being proposed. Lastly, it breaks with the Gettysburg tradition, or at least the coincidence, that the position of the horse's legs reveal the fate of its rider in battle. Four legs on the ground: no battle injury. One hoof raised: the rider suffered a wound. Two legs off the ground: the rider was mortally wounded. Longstreet, whose horse (Hero) is depicted raising a front hoof, suffered no wounding at Gettysburg. It can be argued, perhaps, that his reputation was a lingering casualty following the Confederate loss. (Click image for larger view).

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