Cannonball

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A Georgia author tours York County Civil War sites

The Jacob S. Altland house near Farmers in Paradise Township, where York civic officials “surrendered” the town to Brig. Gen. John B. Gordon, CSA.
I took a day of vacation today and escorted Georgia author and historian Gregory C. White around York County, retracing the route of John Gordon’s Georgians and seeing many of the sites associated with Gordon’s Brigade, including their daily camp sites and houses where key events occured. Greg wrote a book a few years ago on This Most Bloody and Cruel Drama: A History of the 31st Georgia, which was one of the six regiments in Gordon’s Brigade that tramped across York County to Wrightsville and back. He is working on a new manuscript on Georgia at Gettysburg and is writing a definitive article on the Barlow-Gordon Affair at Gettysburg in which he will introduce some new sources and clarity to this controversial event (where Gordon and the badly wounded Union general Frank Barlow met on the battlefield).
Several of Greg’s ancestors were members of the Gordon Expedition, and it was my distinct pleasure to discuss the Confederate perspective with him. Greg had graciously provided me many leads on Georgia sources that I used in my book, Flames Beyond Gettysburg: The Gordon Expedition, June 1863. It was a delight for me to show him York County, which he had never before visited. We paused in New Oxford, Abbottstown, Farmers, and took a detour down to Hanover Junction before heading to York, Hellam, and Wrightsville.


We spent a fair amount of time exploring the battlelines and positions of approach for Gordon’s Brigade as it cautiously maneuvered into position on three sides of the Union defensive entrenchments around Wrightsville, including the three-regiment flanking move down to Kreutz Creek and Dietz’s Mill (later known as Bair’s Mill).
Greg is a native of Florida who lives in Canton, Georgia. He has been a featured speaker at numerous historical associations and gatherings in the Georgia area. Perhaps someday in the future he will come back to York County as a guest speaker for the York Civil War Round Table!
All in all, we had a blast. I am working to set up a similar tour for another group of historians in early 2009.