One hundred and fifty years ago this week the armies of Union and rebellion met in one of the most vicious battles ever fought in North America: Gettysburg.
I want to talk and think about that a little, this week; not that I plan a "battles" piece on Gettysburg (first, because it's been done to death, second, because COL Bateman is doing a hell of a good job doing just that over at Pierce's place, and, third, because like so many of the battles of that war, Gettysburg wasn't "decisive" in any real sense. Bobby Lee's boys took a hell of a whipping and the losses suffered there (and at Chancellorsville earlier in the spring) took a lot of the starch out of the Army of Northern Virgina. But the fall of Vicksburg that same week was the real strategic victory for the North, and the engagement at Gettysburg proved - in my opinion - simply that battles, and especially battles in the Virginia Theater, weren't really going to win or lose anybody anything.
But more about that later.