|1st Maryland Eastern Shore (USA)|
What were the odds that these units, made up of family and friends who had once shared happier times, would both find themselves on this rocky, wooded hill? Maryland was a certified mess during the war as far as loyalties went. Many chose the South. Many chose the North. It was one of the down-sides of being a border state.
Nowhere is this struggle clearer than at South Culp’s Hill, where the monuments to the 1ST Maryland Battalion / 2ND Maryland Infantry (Confederate) and the 1ST Maryland Eastern Shore (Union) are located. Though there were units in between, the two Maryland regiments did go head-to-head at one point, and for the duration of the battle they must have been cognizant of the other’s closeness. Fighting the enemy was one thing. Fighting boys you’d known since childhood was another.
The Maryland soldiers at Culp’s Hill found themselves in a quandary few other Civil War units suffered at Gettysburg: that sorrowful Cain and Abel syndrome. In fact, Col. Wallace, in command of the Eastern Shore unit, expressed regret that at one stage of the battle the focal point of his soldiers’ musketry had indeed been fellow Marylanders. He explained that the Confederate 1ST Maryland Battalion incurred heavy losses and were then buried by enemies who had once been friends.
SGT. WILLIAM H. PRINCE
Co. A, 5TH Virginia Infantry
Died July 03, 1863 at age 20
(c) 2013 Skies of Blue and Gray