National Geographic : 1963 Jul
clothe its base. Violets and dewdrops peep from the grassy mat around it. Behind it down the slope rise aged spires of oak, hickory, poplar, cedar, pine-many carrying century old bullets deep within. Met Sheads led me around the monument. There I saw a tableau in bronze for all time. A Union and a Confederate soldier stand face to face, shaking hands. With his free hand, the Northern soldier holds a canteen to the wounded Southerner's lips. I asked Met if there had been much frat ernization between Yank and Rebel at Gettys burg. He doubted it. At Vicksburg, at night, pickets of North and South often exchanged news, traded coffee for tobacco. But that, said Met, was during the siege; at Gettysburg they fought three brief, brutal days. The South won on July 1, and on July 2 it pounded at both flanks of the Northern forces. That night Meade told his commanders that if another attack came it would be at the center of the Union line. You can stand today at that silent center on Cemetery Ridge, as Met Sheads and I did. Stand near the clump of trees which the at- tacking troops used as their guide; stand and look the scant mile west to Seminary Ridge. The silence becomes a living thing. Out of the trees on the ridge the ghostly motion of men breaks the silence: Men form into line, banners high, bayonets gleaming. Someone cries, "Forward!" and off they go, the men of Pickett's Charge. Now they reach the Emmitsburg Road, pause to remove fence rails, press on, and the Union fire is a scythe sweeping through them. And now up the slow rise of Cemetery Ridge, into the double-quick, and over the low stone wall and into the hand-to-hand. And then the Southerners, shattered, turn back; back, those who can, to Seminary Ridge. Next morning orders were issued for a re treat to Virginia. Thus, on July 4, the men of the South were on their way home, to a way of life that no longer could be, though it would be nearly two more years before all the proof was in at Appomattox. In Vicksburg, that July 4, Grant had won the key to cutting the South in two. Why had not Meade pounced on the retreating Army of Northern Virginia? Perhaps the war would Dress of yesteryear identifies a participant in Remembrance Day, November 19, 1961, com memorating the anniversary of Lincoln's famous address. KODACHROMESBY BATES LITTLEHALES(CENTER) AND GEORGEF. MOBLEY © N.G .S . Bearded Yank, J. Norman Hollar, parades on Remem brance Day. He is a mem ber of Company D, Sixth Regiment, Pennsylvania Reserve Volunteer Corps. Beshawled Abe, por trayed by Paul H. Uibel of Lancaster County, greets Congressman George A. Goodling of Pennsylvania in Lincoln Square, assem bly point of the parade.