(1863) Battle of Gettysburg
Larry Purtell
Little Meadows PA USA
Posts: 1528
Joined: 2004
7/21/2022 5:18:44 PM
From the Semi Weekly Standard. Raleigh North Carolina. July 21. 1863

"My goal is to live forever. So far, so good.
Phil Andrade
London  UK
Posts: 5836
Joined: 2004
7/22/2022 4:10:45 AM
Larry, these are excellent features from North Carolina, and I’m indebted to you for encouraging me to pursue research and make comments, using the John and Travis Busey source.

In the case of the 28th NC, the revelations are truly startling.

It’s commander did his best to inform the readership of the casualties suffered.

He compiles a report of 12 killed, 117 wounded and 94 missing, with the lament that he’s convinced that many of the missing have been killed or wounded, with too many left dead or dying in enemy hands. How right he is !

The reality, by the Busey findings :

Killed : 43. Mortally wounded : 31. Wounded : 147. Unwounded prisoners : 25. Missing, unaccounted for : 1. Total casualties : 247.

The original report of 223 is not far short of the actual figure. The shock lies in the appalling mortality : only 12 posted as killed in action. ; the true number being 43, with another 31 dying from their wounds, 26 of them in enemy hands. Of the 147 surviving wounded, 78 of them were captured. Of the 25 unwounded prisoners - barely ten per cent of the casualty total - 6 were to perish in the hardship and squalor of captivity.

These casualties were almost entirely attributable to the desperate attack of the third day, when Lane’s Brigade took this punishment when North Carolina was martyred just as surely as Pickett’s more celebrated Virginians.

This North Carolina story at Gettysburg is something of a phenomenon. Was it just bad luck, or was there something else at work ? It seems that the sate escaped the terrible cost of the battle on Day Two, but on Days One and Three there was a virtual massacre of North Carolina soldiers.

Editing : Forgive me for resorting to this trope, but I can’t resist :
North Carolina furnished twenty percent of Lee’s army at Gettysburg, but accounted for thirty per cent of all the AoNV deaths there. For Virginia, you could almost reverse that ratio. Thirty percent of all rebel troops in the battle were Virginians, but only twenty per cent of confederate dead from the fight were from The Old Dominion. Here I’m being a tad too rhetorical, but if I’m exaggerating, it’s not by much. One thing I can state with certainty : of all Virginia’s battle dead at Gettysburg, almost exactly two thirds were from Pickett’s Division, which begs one to wonder how much Virginian blood was shed on Days One and Two. Think of the NC regiments of Pettigrew’s, Daniel’s and Iverson’s command on Day One, and then of Lane’s Brigade on Day Three, not to mention the other NC soldiers who, having been so roughly handled on Day One, went to it again on Day Three.

Regards, Phil
"Egad, sir, I do not know whether you will die on the gallows or of the pox!" "That will depend, my Lord, on whether I embrace your principles or your mistress." Earl of Sandwich and John Wilkes
Michigan Dave
Muskegon MI USA
Posts: 7312
Joined: 2006
7/22/2022 1:09:29 PM
Hi Larry, & Phil,

With regard for NC Gen Pettigrew, it is with remorse that this article points out a Michigan Brigade
was involved in the death wound! He certainly was a great officer, & A better person! At Gettysburg before the charge on day 3 he thanked Longstreet for the opportunity to serve under him!?? What say you about NC's most famous CW General??

Thanks, & regards,
"The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract."

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