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Killer Angels - the Battle of Gettysburg

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Essay title: Killer Angels - the Battle of Gettysburg

Killer Angels

The Killer Angels is an awesome and vivid story about the battle of Gettysburg.

Gettysburg was one of the most bloody and horrific battle of the American Civil

War. Author Michael Shaara does an excellent job of showing the bravery and valor of

the men fighting on both sides.

The story begins in a town near Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, in the town of

Taneytown on June 29, 1863. Harrison, a spy for the confederacy, returns to General

Longstreet late in the night and tells him about the Union troops he spotted moving closer

to their camp and could ambush them at any time. Longstreet doesn’t believe Harrison at

first but Harrison is able to convince him eventually. Longstreet wastes no time and alerts

the commander of the Rebel army, General Robert E Lee. General Lee is skeptical too of

the union movement, but eventually decides to move his troops north towards Gettysburg.

Shaara then switches over to the union perspective, giving you a look at their point of

view. He introduces the reader to Colonel Chamberlain and Buster. Buster wakes

Chamberlain up and lets him know that their troop has picked up 120 men from the

Second Maine that disbanded. The new troops are deserters and Chamberlain is ordered

to shoot anyone that will not march. Chamberlain gets the newcomers some food and

meets with their leaders. The leaders tell him that they are sick of fighting and just want

to return home to their families. Chamberlain can’t let them go so he asks them to please

stay and join the 20th Maine, all of the men except 6 agree to this.

It’s now July 1, 1863 and General Lee is waking up. He is having heart trouble

and tries to take it easy. General Stuart still has not reported back to Lee, so he has no

news on the movements of the union army. Longstreet reports to Lee that the new

commander of the Union forces is George Meade, and that he believes the Union Forces

have occupied Gettysburg. He suggests battle tactics to Lee but they are turned down

because they are too defensive. The confederate forces begin to attack General Buford’s

troops in Gettysburg and are being overwhelmed until General Reynolds troops arrive to

help. Reynolds is shot and killed when he arrives and his troops fight without a

commander. It shifts over to General Lee who is just arriving at the battle. He’s annoyed

because he has had no information about any of this because Stuart is still no where to be

found. Lee wants to fight the Union head on and does not retreat his troops or listen to

Longstreet’s tactics. Lee will not listen to Longstreet, and Lee’s reticence makes

Longstreet depressed. Longstreet starts to think about his children who died from fever

over the winter, and he becomes even more depressed. He knows that the army is all that

is left of meaning to him. Lee meets with three other generals to discuss strategies, Ewell,

Rhodes, and Early. He wants Ewell to attack the right of the northern army the next day,

and the other armies to move to the southeast and block the Union from Washington D.C.,

which was Longstreet’s idea. Lee goes to bed, and now General Buford of the Union is

surveying the Hill that was taken by his

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