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The Battle of York?

In a recent pair of posts, I took a brief look at the forces that might have been engaged should the Union troops have decided to defend York against Jubal Early’s oncoming division (which would have been a major mistake in military judgment!). Major Granville O. Haller of the U.S. Army’s 7th Infantry had established a defensive perimeter guarding the Berlin Road and the Gettysburg Turnpike, with cavalry patrols ranging several miles to the west to watch for approaching Confederates.

Other patrols headed to the northwest on Carlisle Road and Canal Road in Dover, two other likely avenues of approach. A battle was averted when Major Haller, acting on instructions from York’s Committee of Safety, withdrew from the hills west of York and entrained for Wrightsville and its entrenchments. If Haller had stood firm, a skirmish would have ensued in the general area of the intersection of Berlin Road and today’s U.S. 30.
Did you know, however, there was a real possibility the Battle of Gettysburg might have instead been fought in York? I’ll explore that intriguing angle a little deeper in an upcoming post.