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Friday, February 15, 2013

February 15, 2013

It’s difficult to believe that there are places on the Gettysburg battlefield that might be considered more violent than others, considering that the battle raged with such great ferocity on those brutal July days. Yet some stories stand out --- some evoke even greater pathos. One is the story of Iverson’s Pits. By July 1863 it was well known that Gen. Alfred Iverson had a “failure to communicate” with his subordinates. There were many instances where he just didn’t seem to get along with the men under his command, and never was this clearer than at Gettysburg.

On July 1st something went horribly wrong. Gen. Iverson ordered the advance of his North Carolina brigade, believing that neighboring brigades would offer support. But the orders weren’t well-thought-out, and the North Carolinians ended up wandering in the middle of a field without much where the enemy lay. They were basically sitting ducks. All of a sudden, boys from Pennsylvania and New York, who had been crouched behind the stone wall that still runs along Oak Ridge, stood up and began to fire. It was chaos. Many of Iverson’s men were killed on sight; the rest were taken prisoner.

A great number of these unfortunate men were buried where they fell --- survivors and witnesses remembered that the North Carolinians fell in rows as if still in a battle line --- on what was then the John Forney farm. But the exact location has been lost. It is therefore still possible, and probable, that a great many Confederate soldiers are still buried at Iverson’s Pits.


Co. H, 49th Georgia Infantry

Born 1836 --- Died July 03, 1863 at age 27

Cpt. Jones started out in the 1st Georgia but was later a part of the 49th Georgia. He had already seen hardship before he ever stepped foot in Gettysburg. During 1861 he was captured in West Virginia but was soon released; he would later see major action. 1863 would be his last year of service. It was likely that he lost his life during the Pickett-Pettigrew-Trimble Charge and was first interred on the battlefield. Though he is remembered at Old City Cemetery in Sandersville, Georgia, it has never been proven that he was removed from the Gettysburg battlefield, thus it is possible that Cpt. Jones’ remains may still lie where he fell. One family tree says he was a lawyer before the war.

(c) 2013 Skies of Blue and Gray


  1. The action you describe took place on July 1st, though I'm sure this was merely a typo on your part. Great article otherwise, and excellent photograph.

  2. Hmmm, you're definitely right :-) Good catch! Yes, I knew this action took place on July 1st . . . it's one of the events of the first day's battle in which I'm most interested.