** Please check out my tribute page to two of my Civil War relatives who never made it home **

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

January 23, 2013

For those who are battle buffs like me, it’s not enough to simply know that a struggle took place at Devil’s Den. I want to know who was where and which units did what. Fortunately, the monuments of the Gettysburg battlefield tell the story well. The monument standing up like an obelisk in the top right of the above photo belongs to the 4th Maine Infantry. It is sometimes difficult to remember that the road which now traverses the Devil’s Den area – Sickles Avenue – did not exist in 1863, and the rocky hills and valleys must have made it tricky for brigades to form up. The 4th Maine’s position was probably along what is now Sickles Avenue near the small creek known as Plum Run.

While engaged at Devil’s Den, the men from Maine had much the same problem as their Confederate counterparts coming across Triangular Field . . . no place to hide, unless, of course, they decided to try their luck diving behind a boulder. But the 4th Maine would do no such thing. They stood firm, taking heat not only from Southerners desperately climbing Little Round Top but also from Gen. Evander Law’s Alabamians who showed up at the most inopportune moment.

The 4th Maine monument itself is quite interesting also. As far as I remember, it is the only monument directly located at Devil’s Den (not counting the 99th Pennsylvania and 124th New York which are both located “above” the den on the heights of Houck’s Ridge) or is at least the closest to the den itself. It dates from the late 1880s and sits directly atop one of the prehistoric diabase boulders for which Gettysburg is so famous.



Co. A, 45th North Carolina Infantry

Born December 30, 1838 --- Died July 01, 1863 at age 24

Lt. Boyd’s family had the unhappy distinction of losing three sons to the war, and he himself was killed at Gettysburg on the first day of battle. (Brother Samuel Hill Boyd died in May 1864 during the Battle of the Wilderness). By the age of twenty-four Lt. George Boyd had distinguished himself as lieutenant but was taken from life by an indiscriminate cannonball. “Find A Grave” says that one of the sons of that family was never found and received a memorial stone at Wentworth Methodist Church in Wentworth, North Carolina, but it does not specify if this was Lt. Boyd.

(c) 2013 Skies of Blue and Gray

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