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Pickett's Charge: The History and Legacy of the Civil War's Most Famous Assault [Kindle Edition]

Charles River Editors
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $2.99

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Book Description

*Includes maps of the battle, pictures of the battlefield, and pictures of the important generals.
*Includes descriptions of Pickett's Charge written by George Pickett, James Longstreet, Porter Alexander, and some soldiers who made the charge.
*Explains Lee's strategy, Longstreet's argument, and an analysis of what went right and wrong.
*Explains the legacy of Pickett's Charge and how it got its famous name.
*Includes a Bibliography for further reading.
*Includes a Table of Contents.

Despite the fact that the Civil War began over 150 years ago, it remains one of the most widely discussed topics in America today, with Americans arguing over its causes, reenacting its famous battles, and debating which general was better than others. Americans continue to be fascinated by the Civil War icons who made the difference between victory and defeat in the war's great battles.

The most famous attack of the Civil War was also one of its most fateful and fatal. Pickett’s Charge, the climactic assault on the final day of the Battle of Gettysburg, has become the American version of the Charge of the Light Brigade, and it is one of the most famous events of the entire Civil War.
Having been unable to break the Army of the Potomac’s lines on the left and right flank during Day 2 of the Battle of Gettysburg, Confederate Army of Northern Virginia commander Robert E. Lee decided to make a thrust at the center of the Union’s line with about 15,000 men spread out over three divisions. The charge required marching across an open field for about a mile, with the Union artillery holding high ground on all sides of the incoming Confederates.

Though it is now known as Pickett’s Charge, named after division commander George Pickett, the assignment for the charge was given to General James Longstreet, whose 1st Corps included Pickett’s division. Longstreet had serious misgivings about Lee’s plan and tried futilely to talk him out of it. Longstreet later wrote that he said to his commander, “General Lee, I have been a soldier all my life. It is my opinion that no fifteen thousand men ever arrayed for battle can take that position.”

Aware of the insanity of sending 15,000 men hurtling into all the Union artillery, Lee planned to use the Confederate artillery to try to knock out the Union artillery ahead of time. Although old friend William Pendleton was the artillery chief, the artillery cannonade would be supervised by Edward Porter Alexander, Longstreet’s chief artillerist, who would have to give the go-ahead to the charging infantry because they were falling under Longstreet’s command. Alexander later noted that Longstreet was so disturbed and dejected about ordering the attack that at one point he tried to make Alexander order the infantry forward, essentially doing Longstreet’s dirty work for him.

Unfortunately for Porter Alexander and the Confederates, the sheer number of cannons belched so much smoke that they had trouble gauging how effective the shells were. As it turned out, most of the artillery was overshooting the target, landing in the rear of the Union line. Reluctant to order the charge, Longstreet commanded Porter Alexander to order the timing for the charge. As Longstreet and Alexander anticipated, the charge was an utter disaster, incurring a nearly 50% casualty rate and failing to break the Union line.

Pickett’s Charge: The History and Legacy of the Civil War’s Most Famous Assault profiles the history, context, and command decisions that all culminated in the most famous charge in American history. It also includes analysis of what went right and wrong, as well as what the major participants wrote about the charge. Along with maps and pictures of important people and places, you will learn about Pickett’s Charge like you never have before, in no time at all.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1923 KB
  • Print Length: 92 pages
  • Publisher: Charles River Editors (November 25, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00ADC8L0Q
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #159,411 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An easy but informative read January 19, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a concise treatment of the Chancellorsville and Gettysburg campaigns, but even if the reader knows very little about the subject here he or she will come away from the book with a good understanding of what happened and why. I especially liked the discussions in chapters 7 and 8 about why Meade did not pursue Lee's army after the battle and the roles played by key actors in determining why Gettysburg turned out the way it did. The comments of Porter Alexander in chapter 8 about Lee's choice of tactics on July 3 provide a perspective from the artillerist's point of view.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My take September 21, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Great read. but two things.
It did not identify whether Generals or troops were on which side, Omitted a reference to Chamberlain (MOH awardee) and the defense of little round top.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Glad it was free March 22, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I believe the title of this book was "Pickett's Charge," not an overall quick synopsis of "The Battle of Gettsyburg." Perhaps I was wrong. Instead of focusing on Pickett, this book seems more directed towards Longstreet and his inactions during the battle.

Pros: Good maps and letters from the participants.

Cons: The make-up of the book is terrible. Too many fillers from past works and repeated phrases by the narrator. We are never told how the battle truly affected Pickett after the war, but we go on and on about Longstreet, Lee, A.P.Hill and others on how the battle was viewed by them years later.

Overall, this is a second rate work. Very disappointed.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read of America's Bloodiest Battle! September 2, 2013
By Solo
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The folks at Charles RIver Editors have produced another great account of history as it really happened. Rather than the dull accounts of history we're used to in textbooks, Charles River Editors give the most fact-based accounts based on actual eyewitnesses. This history tells gives a different, more detailed account of one of the turning points in American history. Gives details rarely found in other tellings often found on tv and in action movies. As history buffs often find, the real stories make for a much better read than the dime novels and flashy accounts on tv and in movies.

I have many Charles Rivers Editors editions in my personal collection and they are always the first things I recommend to anyone who wants to know the real story behind legendary people and historical events. They never disappoint. They all read more like exciting novels than what we normally consider "history".
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another look at Pickett December 13, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
More revealing information about a great Civil War battle and the leaders behind the fight. Excellent reading for Civil War buffs!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars bob September 6, 2014
By Robert
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
One sentence near the end summed up my entire impression of the work. Not sure of the exact wording or location, but referenced a letter written by Lincoln to Meade after the battle. It indicates that Lincoln never sent the letter and that Meade "never read it during his lifetime". From this one must assume that Meade read it in death. Good trick! Houdini would be proud.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Basic information December 27, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A good read for novice perusers of the American Civil War. Much of the information presented is repeated in The Civil War Turning Points in the East: The Battle of Antietam and the Battle of Gettysburg.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars SUPERFICIAL LOOK AT GETTYSBURG April 24, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
Actually a 2 star might be too high of a rating. This book is merely a SUPERFICIAL summary of Pickett' s Charge. It's what one would expect from a high school junior's report for an American history class. Definitely a disappointment. Don't bother purchasing this at any price.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Picket`s Charge
A good overview of the fateful assault on July 3 &of the many factors involved. An interesting and enjoyable read.
Published 6 days ago by Ed Kenney
3.0 out of 5 stars Good synopsis
Informative but nothing really new
Published 1 month ago by Michael Angarone
4.0 out of 5 stars VERY GOOD
Charge could've been the turning point, if it had been followed up.
Buy, read, review and rate on your FIRE
Published 2 months ago by BAARDA
4.0 out of 5 stars Pickett's charge was a bad mistake but the worst of it is that the ...
This 3 days of battle was critical in the history of the Civil War. Pickett's charge was a bad mistake but the worst of it is that the loss of life was needless as the battle was... Read more
Published 2 months ago by RAG
4.0 out of 5 stars Lee blunders
Being the army's commander and setting the strategy for the third day of the battle shoulders the responsibility for the outcome on him. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Don Martin
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent short history of the battle
Loved the references and experts quoted. Still best to walk the fields where the charge took place. There is nothing like walking into the killing zone near the road.
Published 2 months ago by Maryjo Reed
4.0 out of 5 stars Did the Confederates lose the battle, or did the Union win the...
1863.....Off of the Rebel victory at Chancellorsville, Lee decides
to invade the North, with eyes on Philadelphia and then Baltimore. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Donald Hunt
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Great read, interesting...
Published 4 months ago by Dan
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good
Very good over view of the charge.
Published 4 months ago by Randy Hingson
5.0 out of 5 stars This is a easy read book
This is a easy read book. It tells a great history of a tough war. a war no one wanted.........but had to be fought.
Published 5 months ago by Manuel L.Silva
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