A man came to visit the First White House of the Confederacy yesterday from western Pennsylvania, near Gettysburg. He “apologized” for being from the north but told us how interested he was in Civil War History, having grown up so close to the battlefield and spending much time there as a youth.
It reminded me of an article I read in the Journal of Confederate History, Summer 1988 by Dr. Larry McGehee titled “The Mysterious Mist of Gettysburg”. As he points out, words can barley describe the awesomeness of the battlefield.
I recently stood on top of Little Round Top where in his words “one looks down a ravine of boulders behind and around which butternut clad boys once swarmed”.
Between the two armies, 33 generals were lost, “but it is the other 43,700 men whose ghosts walk the fields of Gettysburg and who filter through the sight seer’s inner eye”.
Have you been to the Peach Orchard, where some of the worst fighting took place? Dr. McGehee says: ” It was left in splinters as if a tornado had touched down in Eden. Gettysburg is Paradise Lost, as not even John Milton could have described it”.
Dr. McGehee ends his brief article by saying “In the midst of Gettysburg, amidst the ghosts, one dreams of a world that some day will find a way to avoid treating its boys as it does its wheat, lining them up to be scythed and ground for the rest of us.