The Battle of Gettysburg by Logan Proffitt
Social Studies project
After General Robert E. Lee won a major victory against General Joseph Hooker in Chancellorsville, he wanted to launch more attacks inside of Union territory. He thought that these attacks could break the North's will to fight, and could convince other nations to recognize the confederacy.
On July 1, 1863, a Union raiding party ran right into General George G. Meade's cavalry, triggering the Battle of Gettysburg. After the Confederates pushed the Union troops back through Gettysburg, the Union troops regrouped at Cemetery Ridge and Culp's Hill.
On July 2nd 1863, General Lee ordered an attack on the left of the Union line in an attempt to capture Little Round Top. His troops fired at the Union troops, but the Union forces fought viciously to control Little Round Top. The Confederates were forced to retreat, and instead attacked Cemetery Ridge and Culp's Hill, which the Union troops also defended.
Little Round Top
On July 3rd 1863, General James Longstreet told General Lee not to attack, but he thought that the Union was near its breaking point. He planned to attack the center of the Union, which was on Cemetery Ridge. His men attacked the ridge with cannon fire, then General George Pickett led 15,000 men in a mile long march up it. They were met with cannon and rifle fire, and were forced to retreat, suffering heavy casualties. This marked the end of the Battle of Gettysburg.
The Battle of Gettysburg was a huge turning point in the Civil War- a point where the Union gained an advantage over the Confederates. In total, about 51,000 people died in the battle, including almost 1/3 of General Lee's men. This battle was also very important; it prevented a Confederate invasion in the North, and pushed Lee back to Virginia.
On November 19th 1863, president Abraham Lincoln gave the famous Gettysburg Address at Gettysburg Battlefield Cemetery. In the speech, he praised the bravery of Union troops and showed his commitment towards winning the war. He also reminded listeners why the war was being fought, and rededicated himself to preserving the Union. The speech was only two minutes long, but is one of the most famous in American history.
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