Jul 6



Daniel Sickles returned to the site of his Gettysburg wound in 1886. Brigadier-General Charles Graham is on the right. The Trostle Barn is in the right background. This view was taken facing east by William Tipton in 1886.

One of the most interesting individuals at the Battle of Gettysburg was United States Major-General Daniel Sickles. His movement to a position forward of the Army of the Potomac’s battle line on July 2, 1863, depending on your point of view, either saved the Union Army, or almost led to its destruction. Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guide Jim Hessler has been guiding at Gettysburg since 2003. He is employed full-time with Bill Me Later/ PayPal and has been a Licensed Battlefield Guide since 2003. His book, Sickles at Gettysburg: The Controversial Civil War General Who Committed Murder, Abandoned Little Round Top, and Declared Himself the Hero of Gettysburg, was published last month. He is a long-time Gettysburg and Little Bighorn enthusiast and also a speaker at Civil War Round Tables. He lives in Gettysburg with his wife and two children.

In our first post on Sickles at Gettysburg we saw Sickles’ Corps’ position at Bridgeport, Maryland, Emmitsburg Maryland, and his arrival at the Gettysburg Battlefield. In our second post, we looked at Sickles’ Gettysburg position near Cemetery Ridge before he made his move west to the Emmitsburg Road. In our third post, we showed Sickles’ movement of his line to the high ground near the Peach Orchard and the Emmitsburg Road. In our fourth post, we showed General Meade’s reaction to Sickles’ move. In our fifth post, Jim described Sickles’ wounding. In our sixth post Jim visited the Daniel Sheaffer House on the Baltimore Pike where Sickles stayed the night following his wounding. In today’s post, Jim describes Sickles preservation efforts, and gives his own view if Sickles was correct to move forward on July 2, 1863.



This map shows the location of where our Sickles videos were produced. Videos #1-#5 were shown in our first Sickles video post. Videos #6-7# were taken on Cemetery Ridge near the New York Auxiliary Monument. Video #8 was taken in the low ground near the George Weikert House. Videos #9 and #14 was taken at Meade’s Headquarters (Leister House). Videos #s 10, 12, 13, 15, and 17 were taken in the Sherfy Peach Orchard. Video #11 was taken on the north side of Little Round Top. Video #16 was taken near the Stony Hill/Loop area. Videos #s 18-20 were taken in the area of the Trostle Farm. Video #21 was taken near the Taneytown Road in the vicinity of the Michael Frey Farm. Video #s 22-24 were taken at the Daniel Sheaffer Farm on the Baltimore Pike. Video #25 was taken at the Excelsior Brigade Monument in Excelsior Field. Video #26 was taken off the map (north of the map) in the Soldiers National Cemetery. Video #27 was taken east of the old (1962) Cyclorama building. This map was created facing north at approximately 12:15 PM on Monday, June 29, 2009.



Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guide Jim Hessler is standing by the monument to New York’s Excelsior Brigade. This view was taken facing southeast at approximately 5:00 PM on Monday, May 11, 2009.

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In Video #25 (Videos #s 1-24 were featured in our previous Sickles’ posts) Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guide Jim Hessler discusses Daniel Sickles’ involvement with the New York Monuments Commission. This view was taken facing southeast at approximately 5:00 PM on Monday, May 11, 2009.



United States Avenue runs from left to right (west to east) in this view. Sherfy’s Peach Orchard is out of sight on the left. Excelsior Field is on this (south) side of United States Avenue. The Klingel Barn is in the center background. The monument to the 120th New York Infantry is to the right of the barn. This view was taken facing northwest in 1896.



Licensed Battlefield Guide Jim Hessler is looking at the pedestal in the Excelsior Brigade monument where Sickles’ statue was supposed to be placed. The red Joseph Sherfy Barn is partially seen in the background. This view was taken facing northwest at approximately 5:00 PM on Monday, May 11, 2009.



We have now moved to the New York State Monument in the Soldiers’ National Cemetery. This view was taken facing northeast at approximately 11:15 AM on Thursday, June 18, 2009.

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In Video #26 Jim Hessler describes Daniel Sickles’ preservation efforts at Gettysburg National Military Park. This view was taken facing northeast to east to southeast at approximately 5:00 PM on Monday, May 11, 2009.



A closer view of the scene on the New York State Monument depicting Sickles’ wounding on July 2, 1863. This view was taken facing northeast at approximately 11:15 AM on Thursday, June 18, 2009.



On the back of the Lincoln Speech Memorial, LBG Jim Hessler points out another plaque to Daniel Sickles at Gettysburg. This view was taken facing north at approximately 5:00 PM on Monday, May 11, 2009.



This plaque documents Sickles successful effort to introduce the legislation creating Gettysburg National Military Park. This view was taken facing north at approximately 5:00 PM on Monday, May 11, 2009.



Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guide Jim Hessler has moved to the east side of the old Cyclorama building where the Round Tops are seen in the background. This view was taken facing south at approximately 1:30 PM on Sunday, June 28, 2009.

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In Video #27 Licensed Battlefield Guide Jim Hessler reveals if he thought Sickles move on July 2, 1863 was correct. This view was taken facing south at approximately 1:30 PM on Sunday, June 28, 2009.



Daniel Sickles celebrating with veterans at the Rogers House on the Emmitsburg Road during the 1913 reunion. Sickles died the next year. This view was taken circa July, 1913.



Here is the cover of Jim’s new book on Daniel Sickles. It is published by Savas Beattie LLC, and was published last month. Click here for a link to an interview with Jim on their site. This cover was uploaded at approximately 5:00 PM on Tuesday, April 21, 2009.

To see other posts by Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guides, click here.


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