P-1: Letcher-Purcell Artillery Group
The Tipton Photograph
What These Trees Witnessed
The Letcher Artillery (commanded by Capt. Thomas A. Brander) and Purcell Artillery (Capt. Joseph McGraw) were the two northernmost batteries of Pegram’s Battalion of five batteries. Arriving to this position at 4 PM on July 2, these artillery units contributed as best they could to the Confederate attacks of the evening of July 2, and participated in the cannonade that went on roughly from 1 PM to 3 PM on July 3, which was followed by the Confederate attack known as Pickett’s Charge on Cemetery Ridge.
There are three confirmed witness trees which can be found near these two batteries, one within the stone wall by Brander’s Letcher Artillery, and two between the road (West Confederate Avenue) and the cannon of McGraw’s Purcell Artillery to the south. Witness Tree #1 was first photographically identified by Greg Gober; the pair of trees by the Purcell Artillery (Witness Trees #2 and #3) were first identified in the same photograph by the author.
All three are white oaks.
Go to Tree 1
Go to Trees #2 and #3