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Why was the battle fought at Gettysburg?

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βˆ™ 2013-01-23 18:33:00

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The reason why Robert E. Lee brought his troops into Pennsylvania and to the town of Gettysburg is because his men were desperate for shoes. That area was known for its shoe factories, and Confederate troops raided them as they swept upward. The South had very few factories, and at that time troops often took what they needed from the areas through which they traveled.

AnswerThat Answer is an old legend. If any of it is true, then it would only explain General Henry Heaths division moved into Gettysburg. The other units were drawn into Gettysburg by the ensuing battle.

General Lee explained the reason for his campaign: the problem of what to do next "resolved itself into a choice of one or two things: either to retire to Richmond and stand a siege, which must ultimately have ended in surrender, or to invade Pennsylvania." The same consideration has prompted General Lee to marching into Maryland in September of 1862, which led to the Battle of Antietam.

Another reason was the chronic shortage of supplies. Lee was unable to provide adequate food and clothing for his army or forage for its horses. Not just shoes.

Lee also hoped this would draw Union forces away from the siege of Vicksburg.

No one at the Gettysburg battle really like Robert lee. I'm sure you can tell why. He just didn't ever think.

NEW RESPONDENT

By invading Pennsylvania Lee's main task was that to set up a huge strategic trap in order to destroy or to badly defeat the Army of the Potomac, giving battle at a place accurately chosen.

By what means? By means of a "strategic intimidation" in which he was a great master.

As statement of fact, on June 28, 1863, the Confederates reached the Susquehanna on a front of 40 Km. After a march of some 100 km they could now menacing both Philadelphia and Baltimore.

Their State's authority and the whole Union were panicked.

Lee's divisions were now lined up along an ample arc, whose concaveness directed southward.

The Army of Potomac coming up from the south, its Corps scattered in a long line, was marching towards the center of the arc.

Lee, was aware about the situation in which the Army of Potomac was going to get into and, on June 27, 1863, during a meeting of his staff pointed a finger on the map, indicating a little town, that of Gettysburg. Gettysburg was roughly at a point toward which all the roads leading southward were joining.

General Trimble reported he was told by Lee that most probably a great battle was going to be fought there and had the Almighty given the victory to his army, the Confederacy would have eventually gained the independence.

On June 30, 1863 all Confederate divisions were concentrated on an arc of 50 kilometers immediately north of Gettysburg, with exception of the Stuart's three brigades of cavalry, which had been not able of moving up the well warded right flank of the immense column of Union Army, which was heading northward for a length of many kilometers, and joining in time their Army.

The trap was near to spring.

The battle.

At dawn of 1st July, Lee's Corps started the movements to seize the assigned positions on the battlefield, when Heth division was suddenly attacked by the dismounted 3,500 men of Union Cavalry division of Gen. Buford, that managed to seize, undetected, the McPherson Ridge.

This unexpected action led to the outbreak of the battle before the Confederate Units could deploy

on the field, which was indispensable for the success of Lee's plan, which foresaw that the scattered Union Corps and Divisions would have been crushed as they had arrived on the spot.

Anyhow, on the same day, thanks to the temporary superiority in numbers, the Confederates succeeded in seizing some important positions like: Oak Hill, Seminary Ridge, the town of Gettysburg.

But they were not able to conquer the vital positions of Cemetery Ridge, Cemetery Hill and Culp's Hill, on which the Federals firmly stood beating back all assaults.

On the following day the Confederates attempted to outflank the left wing of the Federals, but they didn't succeed, because the vital position of Little Round Top remained in Union's hand.

The situation in being led Lee, on 3rd July, to take the fatal decision of frontally attack the center of Union Line on the Cemetery Ridge, after a heavy artillery bombardment. The outcome is well known to us all.

It was a further example of the superiority of the fire of rifled guns against the attack led by massed troops through an open ground in an Napoleonic style.

2013-01-23 18:33:00
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