top of page

Gettysburg Day 3: A Reconsideration


or a great many people the 3rd day at Gettysburg is Pickett’s charge. It has become the iconic moment of the Civil War, the high watermark, the beginning of the end. Shelby Foote described it as the price the South paid for Robert E Lee, and maybe he was right. The fact that Pickett had only 3 Brigades out of the 9, and that only 9 out of 43 Brigades were used, and Ewell fought for 7 hours, and much more is forgotten. And what was Stuart doing?

I hope to introduce a number of concepts, either little known, or ignored, about the conflict. I hope to introduce some of the aspects of topography at Gettysburg, which had an impact on the battle but have been overlooked. I hope to explain why the 3rd day had to happen. And I hope to explain how what did happen, eventually overwhelmed any thoughts of what was meant to happen.

For those who believe that R E Lee, arguably the finest Civil War commander on both sides, just had a bad day at the office after a domestic with James Longstreet, this should be a revelation! My intention is to spend the first part of the afternoon explaining how we got to the evening of July 2nd and the second part explaining what was meant to happen on July 3rd and why it did not.

Charles Rees has visited Gettysburg for 18 out of the last 20 years and listened and learnt, and walked and cycled, the battlefield with friends, teachers, wardens and locals. It never fails to intrigue, fascinate and throw up something new and it is his belief that thanks to book, film and legend, America’s iconic battlefield is probably its most misunderstood.


Admission: £10 with reservations made by Friday, 21st February 2014 - contact Treasurer for further details. N.B. admittance cannot be guaranteed without an advance reservation.

The Venue

The Civil Service Club is situated in Great Scotland Yard, near Trafalgar Square, Charing Cross railway station, Charing Cross Underground Station (Northern and Bakerloo lines), Embankment Underground Station (Circle and District, Northern and Bakerloo lines). Click here for website


bottom of page