"It had not been intended to deliver a general battle so far from our base unless attacked, but coming unexpectedly upon the whole Federal Army, to withdraw through the mountains with our extensive trains would have been difficult and dangerous."
Gen. Robert E. Lee, C.S.A.
Commander, Army of Northern Virginia
The seat of Adams County. In 1863 its population was about 2400. This farming community had no particular military value, but the ten roads that converged here helped to lead the armies into a confrontation.
After the battle, townspeople opened their homes and public buildings to thousands of wounded soldiers.
(2) Cashtown Pass
Most of Lee's Confederates approached Gettysburg through this gap in South Mountain. Many of Lee's hospital and supply trains withdrew from the battlefield the same way.
(3) Oak Ridge
On July 1, troops of the Union First Corps fought desperately here against Confederate forces attacking Gettysburg from the north and west. Unable to stop the onslaught, the Federals retreated through Gettysburg to Cemetery Hill.
(4) Barlow's Knoll
The right flank of the Union Eleventh Corps was positioned here on July 1st. In the late afternoon, the Confederate's attack on Barlow's Knoll caused the collapse of the Eleventh Corps position. Union troops retreated through town and reformed on Cemetery Hill.
(5) Benner's Hill
Fourteen Confederate artillery pieces were positioned here from Ewell's Corps. At 4 p.m. on July 2nd, these cannon opened fire in support of the Confederate attack. Twenty-four Union guns replied from Cemetery Hill, Culp's Hill, and Stevens' Knoll to the Confederate fire. The unequal duel continued for an hour and a half and resulted in the severe repulse of the Confederate artillery.