HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Gettysburg--Culp's Hill and Cemetery Hill by…
Loading...

Gettysburg--Culp's Hill and Cemetery Hill

by Harry W. Pfanz

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
264365,907 (4.38)5

None.

Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 5 mentions

Showing 3 of 3
Nobody tells the story of Gettysburg better than Pfanz. Lots of good maps help outline a story told clearly, if a bit woodenly. I have reread Pfanz on this battle several times. ( )
  wbmccune | Aug 1, 2017 |
In Gettysburg: Culp's Hill and Cemetery Hill historian Harry W. Pfanz discusses in detail a part of the battle of Gettysburg which gets little attention.

Possibly the most important area of fighting on July 2nd and 3rd, Cemetery Hill and Culp's Hill are little known to the average person. There was no dramatic charge or movie worthy desperation on the defenders part. Yet, the fighting was critical in holding the right on the Union line and Confederate charges cost the Rebels dear. There was also extensive in-town fighting and nighttime fighting, situations not commonly seen in Civil War battles.

This title was a library discard for me, so I wasn't able to read Pfanz's other accounts of the battle. I thought this portion of the series was well written and relatively easy to follow along with. As with most battlefield accounts, I wish there were more maps and I did find some of the writing a little disjointed. The photos and personal stories of soldiers who participated in these battles were great though. The little vignettes really made some of the men come alive and helped me to better understand some of their decision making.

Overall, I recommend this title to those who have a strong interest in the battle of Gettysburg and want to know a little more about events not commonly talked about. ( )
1 vote greeneyed_ives | Oct 11, 2014 |
In this third book of his trilogy on the Battle of Gettysburg, Pfanz focuses on a very little-recognized aspect of the engagement--the fight for Culp’s Hill and Cemetery Hill on the northern part of the battlefield July 2-3. Thanks to Killer Angels and the movie “Gettysburg”, Longstreet, Chamberlain, Pickett and others who participated in the fighting for the south and center part of the Union line are practically household names and rightly so. But hardly anyone recognizes the names of Oliver Howard and Richard Ewell as a result.

Yet there was quite a vicious fight on both days for control of what was, really, the keystone to the Union line--Cemetery Hill and its immediate neighbor on the ridge, Culp’s Hill. Confederate losses in particular were extremely heavy as General Johnson ordered his units to attack what were impregnable breastworks on Cemetery Hill. The Confederates occupied a portion of Culp’s Hill for a while but were eventually driven off.

If that were all the book covered--the fighting on those two days--it would be interesting enough. But from the beginning Pfanz makes the account a page-turner, by focusing on the two commanders involved--Confederate Richard Ewell and Union Oliver Howard, and by recapping the fighting on July 1st that affected the Union positions on the two critical hills. He also answers a question that has been raised many times--why did Ewell, on July 1, not occupy Cemetery Hill immediately?

For those who read the book or saw the movie, which very dramatically depicted the conversation, there is a scene between Isaac Trimble and Robert Lee, where Trimble rants on about Ewell’s failure to take the hill. He makes it clear that Ewelll was paralyzed or something and didn’t act when he should have. It is particularly well-acted in the movie, and we are left in no doubt that Ewell was the cause of the Confederate failure to follow up their victory of July 1.

Pfanz discusses the reorganization of Lee’s army just prior to the Gettysburg campaign and shows that Ewell--who was taking over Stonewall Jackson’s old 2nd Corps--had never served directly under Lee before, but only under Jackson, who was a very, very different commander. One problem, then, was that given the loosey-goosey way Lee gave orders--very different from Jackson who gave precise orders and had the habit of putting under arrest anyone who didn’t follow them the way he thought they should have-- Ewell really wasn’t sure what he was supposed to do. Also, Ewell himself had reconnoitered Cemetery Hill--and knew that the Union had already occupied it; the Iron Brigade was there. Granted, there weren’t a great many troops there, but what no one talks about is the nature of that particular point on the Union defense line--the steep slope, rocks and wooded nature of the hill that made an attack, especially at nightfall, practically impossible given defenders. It gives the lie to Porter Alexander who was critical of Lee’s decision, on July 2, of attacking Cemetery Ridge and not the Hill. Alexander, who had a limitless supply of self-confidence if not downright arrogance, admitted that he had not seen the area of Cemetery Hill, but still felt omniscient enough to criticize Lee--who had seen it. One always has to be careful with memoirs, especially those of the losers. Trimble, for example, was an ambitious trouble-maker who was quite self-serving in his accounts after the war of what happened at Gettysburg.

I found this the most readable, the most followable of Pfanz’s three books, if for no other reason than the maps were excellent! Which can not be said of the other two. Also, the extensive notes to each chapter were well worth reading. As usual, Pfanz includes excerpts from letters, diaries and memoirs of everyone from the lowliest private in either army to the highest-ranking generals. This not only makes the book more interesting from a personal perspective (and also shows how no two soldiers saw the fighting the same way) but also provides a bibliography for further reading in terms of these personal reminiscences.

While this book can be read on its own, it’s still better to read the other two (Gettysburg, the First Day and Gettysburg, the Second Day with a good set of maps, such as Gottlieb’s The Maps of Gettysburg at hand. The first two books are worth the extra effort, and will make the third that much more of a pleasure to read.

Highly recommended. ( )
1 vote Joycepa | Feb 12, 2009 |
Showing 3 of 3
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
To the memory of our parents

Harry E. and Marion Wilcox Pfanz

Donald M. and Louise Crittenden Earll
First words
1
Two Generals and Their Armies

Two generals -- corps commanders -- confronted one another at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, late on the afternoon of 1 July 1863.
PREFACE
When Maj. Gen. Oliver Otis Howard, commander of the Army of the Potomac's Eleventh Corps, reached Gettysburg on the morning of 1 July 1863, he saw the tactical potential of Cemetery Hill should the Union forces at Gettysburg should the Union forces at Gettysburg have to go on the defensive.
Quotations
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS
Book description
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0807821187, Hardcover)

In this companion to his celebrated earlier book, Gettysburg—The Second Day, Harry Pfanz provides the first definitive account of the fighting between the Army of the Potomac and Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia at Cemetery Hill and Culp's Hill—two of the most critical engagements fought at Gettysburg on 2 and 3 July 1863.

Pfanz provides detailed tactical accounts of each stage of the contest and explores the interactions between—and decisions made by—generals on both sides. In particular, he illuminates Confederate lieutenant general Richard S. Ewell's controversial decision not to attack Cemetery Hill after the initial southern victory on 1 July. Pfanz also explores other salient features of the fighting, including the Confederate occupation of the town of Gettysburg, the skirmishing in the south end of town and in front of the hills, the use of breastworks on Culp's Hill, and the small but decisive fight between Union cavalry and the Stonewall Brigade.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:03 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

In this companion to his celebrated earlier book, Gettysburg--The Second Day, Harry Pfanz provides the first definitive account of the fighting between the Army of the Potomac and Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia at Cemetery Hill and Culp's Hill--two of the most critical engagements fought at Gettysburg on 2 and 3 July 1863. Pfanz provides detailed tactical accounts of each stage of the contest and explores the interactions between--and decisions made by--generals on both sides. In particular, he illuminates Confederate lieutenant general Richard S. Ewell's controversial decision not to attack Cemetery Hill after the initial southern victory on 1 July. Pfanz also explores other salient features of the fighting, including the Confederate occupation of the town of Gettysburg, the skirmishing in the south end of town and in front of the hills, the use of breastworks on Culp's Hill, and the small but decisive fight between Union cavalry and the Stonewall Brigade.

» see all 2 descriptions

Quick Links

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (4.38)
0.5
1
1.5
2
2.5
3 4
3.5 1
4 8
4.5 1
5 15

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 137,285,485 books! | Top bar: Always visible