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The Itinerary

American Civil War - 'The Gettysburg Campaign'

9 June - 23 July 1863

1 - 10 June 2018

Price per person £2,635.00, No Single supplement
Deposit per person £200.00
Air Fares from the UK are included.

Following the defeat of the Union Army at Chancellorsville.  Robert E Lee decided to move north once more with the intention of taking the war to the North, hoping to force a cessation to the fighting and with at last recognition of the South.  However he did not have Stonewall Jackson, his most reliable commander, killed two months earlier at Chancellorsville.


Itinerary

1 June
Fly to Washington Dulles Airport, to be met by your tour manager/guide
Overnight Culpeper.                                                 

2 June
Today we visit the Battle of Brandy Station (9 June 1863), the first action in what will become the Gettysburg Campaign.  This morning we will visit the battlefield to see where the opposing Cavalry forces under Generals JEB Stuart & Alfred Pleasonton will fight the first major cavalry battle of the war. After lunch on our way to Winchester we will stop at Aldie and Middleburg where skirmishes took place later that month.
Overnight Winchester.

3 June
Winchester, an important town in the Northern part of the Shenandoah Valley, was reputed to have changed hands over 70 times during the war.  Today we will concentrate on the 2nd Battle of Winchester that took place over the period 13 –15 June as Lee’s Army advanced northwards.  Needing to push the strong Union defensive force away so that his rear would not be threatened, an overwhelming victory was achieved.
2nd night Winchester.

4 June
Leaving Winchester this morning we follow General Robert E. Lee’s route and part of his Army as it crosses the Potomac River into Maryland   and northwards into Pennsylvania, all the time being shielded by the Blue Ridge Mountains to the east.  At Chambersburg we head east and cross the South Mountain at Black Gap. Descending we stop at Cashtown where Lee will meet AP Hill to be advised that Heth’s Division is heavily engaged in action at a small town called Gettysburg.
Overnight Gettysburg.

5 June
On 1 July 1863 a strong force of Confederates marched towards    Gettysburg from the west; an initial reconnaissance had indicated that only a local militia unit held the town.  This ‘militia’ was in fact John Buford’s cavalry brigade.  From this small skirmish a full-blown battle quickly formed as both sides rushed up troops.  Outnumbered and outfought the Union soldiers were pushed back through the town to Cemetery Ridge.
As night ended the Confederates major opportunity to win this battle and perhaps end the war had not been fulfilled.
2nd night in Gettysburg.

6 June
July 2 dawned hot and bright. Both commanding Generals had nearly all their available troops in position. Today joint attacks on both ends of the Federal lines ‘the fishhook’ could end in a Confederate victory.  We will spend the day walking these fields and seeing why this did not happen.  On the Federal left the way looked clear, little or no defence on the Big or Little Round Tops.  The Union General Dan Sickles had moved his line forward into the Peach Orchard & Wheat Fields, in hope that this would give time for other troops to be moved up on the left.  Bloody fighting took place all day on both Federal flanks, but by nightfall the Union Army still held their positions.
3rd night in Gettysburg.

7 June
During the night Lee’s last Division joined the Army, General George Pickett’s Virginians.  After attacks against the Union flanks, Lee’s opinion was that the Federal weakness would be now be in the centre.  After a fierce artillery bombardment 12,000 infantry stepped forward, in some cases a mile away from the Federal lines which immediately commenced accurate defensive artillery fire.  Heroically these men continued forward. Many reached the Union lines only to be cut down or captured.  With no reserves to follow up these limited successes, they fell back.  The battle was over.  Neither side had the desire to continue the action the next day and Lee issued orders for his battered Army to return to Virginia.
4th night in Gettysburg.

8 June
Before leaving Gettysburg this morning, we will visit the site of the major cavalry battle that took place on 3 July.  With victory in mind, Lee had sent Stuart's cavalry north with the intention of disrupting the Union withdrawal.  After sharpening their newfound skills at Brandy Station, the Union Cavalry, with George Custer leading his brigade, was more than a match for Stuart’s troopers.
We follow the route of the Confederate Army as they fall back towards the Potomac; we look at the defensive actions at Hagerstown, Williamsport and at Falling Waters, where Confederate General Pedigrew was mortally wounded.  The last action of the Gettysburg campaign will take place at Wapping Heights (Manassas Gap) on 23 July.
Overnight Northern Virginia

9 June
Our first stop this morning will be at Arlington Cemetery, the former home of Robert E. Lee.  Later this morning we will cross the Potomac River to Washington DC  to see some of the sights of the capital, before driving to Dulles airport for your late afternoon/early evening flights.

10 June
Arrive London Heathrow early morning.

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