GDG- Memoir of post-battle visits to Gettysburg

Matt Diestel agatematt at
Fri Jan 27 12:22:29 CST 2012

> Esteemed GDG Member Tom Ryan Contributes:

> Issue 46 of Gettysburg Magazine includes an article about a memoir by a
> Lutheran minister, Rev. Franklin Sshantz, who visited the battlefield
> immediately after the fighting ended, July 7-9, a couple weeks later, July
> 22-27, and at the time of the National Cemetery dedication, July 17-20.
> Very interesting and detailed observations about the scene on the
> battlefield (bodies still lying around unburied), the makeshift hospitals
> in
> barns, farmhouses and private homes, and the parade and dedication of the
> cemetery where he heard "Remarks by President Lincoln."  Dr. Schantz was
> also in attendance when Lincoln spoke to a crowd that had gathered outside
> of a home (presumably David Wills' house on the square).
> The article focuses primarily on the Eleventh Corps hospital at the
> Spangler
> Farm, acquired by the Gettysburg Foundation in recent years and targeted
> for
> future restoration.  The article is also a plea for donations to speed this
> restoration process along.
> One comment that caught my eye on that on July 8, a couple of days after
> the
> Union army had left Gettysburg, Dr. Schantz observed "a large body of
> Cavalry starting on a march to join the army which had left Gettysburg.
>  The
> left in a heavy rain."
> He did not explain what "a large body of Cavalry" consisted of, but I am
> curious what unit this cavalry was part of, and why they were still in
> Gettysburg while Meade was in pursuit of Lee's retreating army?
> Any ideas?
> Tom Ryan
>    Tom,
      Coddington on page 544 of his "The Gettysburg Campaign: A Study in
Command" in which he notes the movement of the AOP's cavalry in the days
following the battle contains the following: "Pleasanton, for reasons not
known, stripped General Gregg, an able and experienced brigadier, of his
entire command and apparently left him with nothing to do until July 9,
when one of his brigades finally reported back to him for orders."
    At that time, the AOP's 2nd Cavalry Division consisted of three
brigades commanded by McIntosh, Huey had been back at Westminster guarding
the army's main supply depot during the battle.
     That "large body of cavalry" would seem to have either been McIntosh's
or Gregg's brigade since on the 4th, Pleasanton had told Kilpatrick to take
his division to Emmittsburg where he would find Huey's Brigade waiting,
which had been brought over from Westminster to be ready to pounce on any
of Lee's trains moving south via Hagerstown (Coddington, Pg. 544). Given
that Huey had already deployed that far south, it would seem strange that
the brigade would then be pulled all the way back to Gettysburg simply to
report to Gregg for orders.  But with Pleasanton, one never knows.
      However, it would seem that the "large body of cavalry" must have
been one of Gregg's brigades and Shantz had the wrong date of July 8 for
when he saw the cavalry.
           With regards,

More information about the Gettysburg mailing list