May 1



The fans of James Longstreet waited years for him to have a monument on any Civil War Battlefield. Chickamauga and Gettysburg were the two most prominently mentioned locations. Finally, on July 3, 1998, this sculpture by Gary Casteel was unveiled. This view was taken from the southeast facing northwest at approximately 4:15 PM on Thursday, May 1, 2008.

One of the most disappointing monuments at Gettysburg National Military Park is that honoring Lieutenant-General James Longstreet. Longstreet had been much maligned in the post war years for his criticisms of Robert E. Lee, turning Republican. When Confederates looked for a scapegoat at Gettysburg, he became very convenient. He did not have his corps in position in a timely manner on July 2, 1863. He did not favor Pickett’s Charge (Pickett-Trimble-Pettigrew Assault/Longstreet Assault), and that might have led to lack of detail, including picking the soldiers to be used for the assault.



Some have stated that the monument is not on a pedestal because the National Park Service now forbids monuments to be over a certain height because of safety concerns. Gary Casteel’s website explains that the monument is not on a pedestal, “to become not less heroic, but more personal and approachable…” We are certainly not art experts, but the proportions between Longstreet and his horse do not seem to work. This view was taken from the northeast facing southwest at approximately 4:15 PM on Thursday, May 1, 2008.



The statue has been variously nicknamed, “The Troll on the Pony,” or for those Lord of the Rings fans, “Gimli on his horse.” This view was taken from the northeast facing southwest at approximately 4:15 PM on Thursday, May 1, 2008.



Those who are fans of Longstreet believe he deserves something better. Maybe Chickamauga will have their chance someday. This view was taken from the southwest facing northeast at approximately 4:15 PM on Thursday, May 1, 2008.



This area also contains two plaques or markers concerning Longstreet. This one gives a biographical sketch. This view was taken from the northwest facing southeast at approximately 4:15 PM on Thursday, May 1, 2008.



This plaque summarizes Longstreet at Gettysburg. This view was taken from the southwest facing northeast at approximately 4:15 PM on Thursday, May 1, 2008.


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