Gettysburg - East Cavalry Field - July 3, 1863

The American Battlefield Trust's map of the East Cavalry Field at the Battle of Gettysburg on July 3, 1863

While infantry fighting resumed on the morning of July 3, two brigades of Union cavalry under Gen. David McMurtrie Gregg picketed the intersection of the Hanover and Low Dutch roads three miles in the rear of the Union army. A third brigade of Michigan cavalry under Gen. George Custer was close at hand and supported Gregg’s troopers. Control of both roads would be essential if the Union army was forced to withdraw from their positions around Gettysburg.

Artillery fire signaled the opening of a Confederate attack followed by dismounted fighting on the farm of John Rummell. Three brigades of Confederate horsemen under Gen. Jeb Stuart, who had arrived on the battlefield the evening before, launched a series of mounted charges, each of which was repulsed by a counter-charge from the Federals. After suffering heavy losses, Stuart withdrew. The Union rear was secure.

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