The Battle Of Gettysburg And Civil War

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The Battle of Gettysburg occurred July 1-3, 1863 in and around Gettysburg, Pennsylvania and was one of the most significant battles of the American Civil War. Union forces of the North, commanded by Major General George G. Meade met and fought the Confederate forces of the South, commanded by General Robert E. Lee. Many historians believe the battle was a large turning point in the Civil War in favor of the Union (Woodworth, 2008). However, this is disputable. The battle was also significant because it was the bloodiest battle of the war, which resulted in the death of 51,112 Soldiers (The Battle of Gettysburg, The American Civil War, Statistics, n.d.). The Union forces defeated the Confederacy at Gettysburg resulting in the Confederate force’s retreat back to Virginia.
Setting the Stage
Major General George G. Meade commanded the Union forces, organized under the Army of the Potomac, during the Battle of Gettysburg. Meade was born in Cádiz, Spain to a U.S. naval agent on December 31, 1815. Meade graduated from West Point in 1835 and served briefly in the Seminole War. In 1836, he resigned from the Army and became a civil engineer. In 1842, Meade joined the Army again. He served as a Topographical Engineer in the Mexican American War, and was a veteran of multiple Civil War battles prior to the Battle of Gettysburg. Meade received the position as Commander of the Army of the Potomac only three days prior to the Battle of Gettysburg, following the resignation of
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