Most visitors to Gettysburg have seen the large bronze book monument at the Copse of Trees, flanked by artillery, but have you ever read it? The left “page” states “High Water Mark of the Rebellion” and goes on to name the Confederate units that participated in the Pickett-Pettigrew-Trimble Charge. The right page names the Union units that held their ground against the Southern onslaught, those who aided in the “Repulse of Longstreet’s Assault.” It’s a beautiful and fitting tribute for both sides.
The background of this photo is interesting as well . . . some of the trees within the black wrought-iron fence at the Copse have been named as witness trees, though I couldn’t say which ones or if any are present in this shot. From the website “Draw the Sword”, absolutely one of the best Gettysburg sites out there, I learned that this monument --- the bronze book, along with the cannonballs behind it and the artillery pieces on either side of it --- was the brainchild of John Bachelder, one of Gettysburg’s best-known superintendents. I also learned that many states banded together to field the cost of this impressive memorial that marks the spot of one of the most important battlefield sites on American soil.
CPT. WILLIAM H. MURRAY
Co. A, 2nd Maryland Infantry (Confederate)
Born April 30, 1839 --- Died July 03, 1863 at age 24
(c) 2013 Skies of Blue and Gray