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Near Gettysburg in Adams County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Barksdale's Charge

 

—July 2, 1863 - Second Day —

 
Barksdale's Charge Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, April 12, 2008
1. Barksdale's Charge Marker
Inscription. "...I never saw anything equal the dash and heroism of the Mississippians."
Capt. G.B. Lamar, Jr., C.S.A.
Aide to Maj. Gen. Lafayette McLaws

On the afternoon of July 2, most of General Longstreet's Confederate First Corps were engaged in battle from Little Round Top to the Peach Orchard. Brig. Gen. William Barksdale's Mississippi Brigade stood in line directly behind you, impatiently awaiting orders to join the attack. Barksdale was vexed at the delay, and repeatedly asked permission to advance.

Shortly after 6:00 p.m. the order came. Barksdale's Brigade, followed by Wofford's Georgia Brigade, charged the Federals positioned at the Peach Orchard and Sherfy Farm in front of you, and overwhelmed them in a violent struggle. Barksdale rode in front, his white hair gleaming, leading a chorus of Rebel yells.

The advance Federal line collapsed as Barksdale drove his Mississippians onward. Near the Trostle Farm, about 3/4 mile in front of you, the attack lost its momentum and Union reinforcements drove the Mississippians back. While attempting to rally his men, Barksdale was riddled with bullets. He died that night at a Union field hospital.
 
Erected by Gettysburg National Military Park.
 
Location. 39° 48.143′ 
Barksdale's Charge Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, April 12, 2008
2. Barksdale's Charge Marker
This marker, like many at Gettysburg, has an audio recording push button which offers more information about this stage of the battle.
N, 77° 15.346′ W. Marker is near Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, in Adams County. Marker is at the intersection of West Confederate Avenue and Millerstown Road, on the left when traveling south on West Confederate Avenue. Click for map. Located in Gettysburg National Military Park. Marker is in this post office area: Gettysburg PA 17325, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Mississippi (a few steps from this marker); The Brooks Artillery (within shouting distance of this marker); Miller's Battery - Eshleman's Battalion (within shouting distance of this marker); Barksdale's Brigade (within shouting distance of this marker); Squires's Battery - Eshleman's Battalion (within shouting distance of this marker); Louisiana State Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); Madison Light Artillery (within shouting distance of this marker); Wofford's Brigade (within shouting distance of this marker). Click for a list of all markers in Gettysburg.
 
More about this marker. In the upper right is a painting of the charge. General Barksdale led what witnesses remembered as one of the most magnificent charges of the war. Painting by Mort Kunstler.

Below and to the right is a portrait of Pvt. John A. Byers, 17th Mississippi Infantry, followed General Barksdale into battle here. He was wounded
Barksdale's Brigade Advance image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, April 12, 2008
3. Barksdale's Brigade Advance
The Brigade advanced east through this point in the direction of the Sherfy Farm (red barn in the distant center) and the Peach Orchard (slight elevation to the distant right).
and captured by Union soldiers.


In the lower center Brig. Gen. William Barksdale ardently advocated states rights in the U.S. Congress before the war. On the battlefield he proved to be an irrepressible leader. Mortally wounded at Gettysburg, he told a surgeon, "Tell my wife I am shot, but we fought like hell." Photo taken before the war.
 
Also see . . .  Pitzer's Woods. A National Park Service page discussing the Confederate advance from the woods against Federal positions along the Emmitsburg Pike. (Submitted on August 9, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.) 
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 2,906 times since then and 51 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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