Friday, September 26, 2008

Towering over the Angle - Gettysburg

The National Tower (top right) stands over the battlefield as seen from the Angle at Gettysburg. The commercial sight-seeing attraction was demolished in 2000 as the spearhead of a wave of change and restoration at the park this decade. Next up: removal of the Cyclorama Center and old Visitor Center. (Click image for larger view).

Thursday, September 25, 2008

The Fall of Zook - Gettysburg

An unadorned monument marks where Union Brigadier General Samuel Kozciuszko Zook was mortally wounded leading his men into the Wheatfield during the second day at Gettysburg.He survived long enough to learn of the Rebels' repulse the following day.  "Then I am satisfied," Zook said, "and am ready to die." (Click image for larger view).

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

'Screaming shells and shot' - Gettysburg

Fog surrounds a Union cannon on Cemetery Ridge where the cannonade preceding Pickett's Charge on the third day at Gettysburg was directed. Both lines were soon clouded by smoke at the onset of the barrage. "The air is darkened with sulphurous clouds. The whole valley is enveloped," declared one participant, recounting decades later. "The sun, lately so glaring, is itself obscured. Nothing can be seen but the flashing light leaping from the cannon's mouth amidst the surrounding smoke. The air which was so silent and serene is now full of exploding and screaming shells and shot..." (Click image for larger view).

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

In the Wheatfield - Gettysburg

Wildflowers bloom where wheat was ripening on the second day of fighting at Gettysburg in the "Bloody Wheatfield." 4000 soldiers of both armies fell in or near the Wheatfield as back-and-forth fighting drew soldiers into battle during Confederate attacks on the Union left. (Click image for larger view).

Monday, September 22, 2008

Coster Ave. Mural - Gettysburg

The 154th New York Infantry monument stands in front of the Coster Avenue mural on the battlefield of the first day of fighting at Gettysburg. The mural depicts the fighting that took place at this location as members of Coster's brigade - forming a rear guard as the Union line collapsed north of town - were routed by superior numbers of Confederates. Ten-year-old Charles McCurdy, watching the stream of soldiers in Gettysburg, remembered later: "If there is a more thrilling spectacle than an army in frenzied retreat through the narrow streets of a town, I cannot imagine it." (Click image for larger view).