Cumberland Township in Adams County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Maj. Gen. George Gordon Meade
"Gen. Meade has my confidence as a brave and skillful officer, and a true man."
President Abraham Lincoln
July 21, 1863
The sculpture in front of you depicts Gettysburg's Union commander, Maj. Gen. George G. Meade, at the climax of the battle here July 3. From this ridge near his headquarters he observed the closing moments of the battle and encouraged his troops.
Meade was a West Point graduate and a professional soldier. A stern disciplinarian with a temper, his soldiers nicknamed him "Ol Snappin' Turtle." Though not a favorite with reporters, he earned the respect of officers and men who served under him. Only three days after being appointed commander of the Union Army of the Potomac, he faced Robert E. Lee in perhaps the greatest battle of the Civil War.
Following the battle, President Abraham Lincoln expressed disappointment that Lee's defeated army was allowed to escape into Virginia. But Lincoln soon put criticism aside and expressed his gratitude to Meade. Congress also praised Meade and his men who "repulsed, defeated, and drove back...the veteran army of the Rebellion."
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #16 Abraham Lincoln series list. A significant historical date for this entry is July 21, 1863.
Location. 39° 48.842′ N, 77° 14.105′ W. Marker is in Cumberland Township, Pennsylvania, in Adams County. Marker is on Hancock Avenue, on the right when traveling north. Located near the Meade Memorial on Cemetery Ridge, at Gettysburg National Military Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Gettysburg PA 17325, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Second Brigade (a few steps from this marker); 39th New York Infantry (Garibaldi Guards) (a few steps from this marker); Major General George Gordon Meade (within shouting distance of this marker); 11th Independent (Havelock) Battery (within shouting distance of this marker); 14th Connecticut Volunteer Infantry (within shouting distance of this marker); Batteries F & K, Third U.S. Artillery (within shouting distance of this marker); Second Corps (within shouting distance of this marker); Battery K, 1st N.Y. Light Artillery (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Cumberland Township.
More about this marker. In the center is a portrait: Maj. Gen. George Gordon Meade commanded the Union Army of the Potomac from Gettysburg until the end of the war
In the upper right is a drawing of General Meade standing beside table with hat in hands holds a council of war at headquarters the night before the final day of the battle. Meade, who got little sleep at Gettysburg, wrote his wife, "I claim no extraordinary merit for this last battle. I did and shall continue to do my duty..."
In the lower right is a wartime photograph of Meade's headquarters: The farmhouse of Lydra Leister, a widow, served as Meade's headquarters July 2 and 3. In this photo taken July 6 by Alexander Gardner, dead horses lie rotting on a landscape blasted by shot and shell. Today the Leister House, located 200 yards from here along the walk to your left, is preserved by the National Park Service.
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. Markers, Tablets and Monuments for the Meade's Headquarters.
Also see . . . Report of Maj. Gen. George G. Meade. Meade's official report of the campaign reads through the itinerary of the Army of the Potomac from the time he took command on June 28 through the middle of July. (Submitted on December 29, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.)
Credits. This page was last revised on December 4, 2020. It was originally submitted on December 29, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,563 times since then and 14 times this year. Photos: 1. submitted on December 29, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. 2. submitted on August 14, 2012, by Henry T. McLin of Hanover, Pennsylvania. 3. submitted on November 14, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. 4, 5, 6. submitted on December 29, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. 7, 8. submitted on January 2, 2009, by Henry T. McLin of Hanover, Pennsylvania.