How Strong were the Washington Defensive at the time of the Gettysburg Campaign?

Luke Freet

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I know that Washington at this time was well guarded with a massive array of forts around the city, and was the most fortified city on the planet at the time, meaning that it'd be literally impossible for Lee to take the city by force. However, I want to know how many men were in the city at the time of the Battle?
 

Arioch

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One brigade (4 regiments) of the Pa. Reserves were left to the defense of the city when the rest of the division left for the Gettysburg campaign...they were not happy to be left behind....certainly not the only troops in town...
 

Luke Freet

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Quite a few I would think. Its before Grant came along and took all the heavy artillery units out to the field.
Certainly. I remember seeing calculations for 1864, and the Heavy Artillery Regiments sent to reinforce Grant numbered 20-25K men. Basically a Corps on their own.
 

ucvrelics

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After the Union loss at the First Battle of Manassas, Washington DC was in a panic and men and and material to include the building of massive fortifications and some really heavy guns was done like a rat, "Rat Now". If Gen Beauregard had pressed it we could have taken DC early in the war. But then again PTG was not a presser as is shown through out his career.
 

rpkennedy

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During the Gettysburg Campaign, the Washington defense was organized as 2 divisions of the Twenty-Second Corps under Major General Samuel P. Heintzelman (the divisions were commanded by Brigadier Generals Gustavus A. DeRussy and Joseph A. Haskin). Many units were stripped from the defenses during the campaign (Stannard's Brigade, 2 Pennsylvania Reserves brigades for example) and I do not have the strength of the remaining troops.

Ryan
 
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infomanpa

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During the Gettysburg Campaign, the Washington defense was organized as 2 divisions of the Twenty-Second Corps under Major General Samuel P. Heintzelman (the divisions were commanded by Brigadier Generals Gustavus A. DeRussy and Joseph A. Haskin). Many units were stripped from the defenses during the campaign (Stannard's Brigade, 2 Pennsylvania Reserves brigades for example) and I do not have the strength of the remaining troops.

Ryan
Were those regiments that were sent to Gettysburg still there when JEB Stuart moved on Washington or had they already left?
 

rpkennedy

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Were those regiments that were sent to Gettysburg still there when JEB Stuart moved on Washington or had they already left?
Several of the units that were shipped to the Army of the Potomac left on June 26, so two days before Stuart arrived in the vicinity. I don't have exact dates on every unit, however. I'm still trying to put together a quick and dirty OOB for the Twenty-second Corps which was in a state of flux prior to the Gettysburg Campaign with divisions and brigades being reorganized as a number of 9-month regiments were going home.

Ryan
 

Luke Freet

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With the uncertainty of Lee's invasion would militia have been called up for garrison duty?
From the OoB I've found, I think there were about 8 regiments of New York National Guard/Militia in DC at the time.
And I believe most of Couch's Department of the Susquehanna was made up of Pennsylvania Milita.
 

infomanpa

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Several of the units that were shipped to the Army of the Potomac left on June 26, so two days before Stuart arrived in the vicinity. I don't have exact dates on every unit, however. I'm still trying to put together a quick and dirty OOB for the Twenty-second Corps which was in a state of flux prior to the Gettysburg Campaign with divisions and brigades being reorganized as a number of 9-month regiments were going home.

Ryan
With the diminished garrison, it would have been interesting to see what would have happened if Stuart decided on a cavalry raid. That certainly would have stirred things up in DC. :giggle:
 

trice

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On June 15th, 1863, Lincoln issued a call for 100,000 six-month troops from the states of Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Maryland. This is the same date as Ewell's victory at Winchester in the Shenandoah, so the reason for the call is obvious enough: Lee is on the move. His actual goal isn't clear yet, but Ewell in the Valley offers potential threats to all of those places.

Pennsylvania's Governor Curtin called for 50,000 militia but only some 7,000 were in the early reports, so Curtin asked New York for assistance. Governor Parker of NJ called some up and sent them to PA as well -- I think all these ended up going to Harrisburg.
 

rpkennedy

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On June 15th, 1863, Lincoln issued a call for 100,000 six-month troops from the states of Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Maryland. This is the same date as Ewell's victory at Winchester in the Shenandoah, so the reason for the call is obvious enough: Lee is on the move. His actual goal isn't clear yet, but Ewell in the Valley offers potential threats to all of those places.

Pennsylvania's Governor Curtin called for 50,000 militia but only some 7,000 were in the early reports, so Curtin asked New York for assistance. Governor Parker of NJ called some up and sent them to PA as well -- I think all these ended up going to Harrisburg.

Most of those that managed to muster into service were indeed shipped to the Department of the Susquehanna but several New York militia regiments were sent to Baltimore and Frederick as well (which was the Middle Department).

Ryan
 
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trice

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I think you can deduct WV from Lincoln's call for militia, they didn't have the manpower, and the Wheeling government was granted an exemption from the 1863 draft.
I am sure you are right about the manpower. WV wasn't actually granted statehood until June 20, 1863, so their inclusion in the call is probably more of a courtesy or anticipation of statehood than anything else. I doubt Washington had any belief they would see a large body of troops coming out of WV.
 

Tom Elmore

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Most of those that managed to muster into service were indeed shipped to the Department of the Susquehanna but several New York militia regiments were sent to Baltimore and Frederick as well (which was the Middle Department).

Ryan
I was just reading about the 7th New York Militia in their sparkling uniforms being assigned to Provost Guard duty in Frederick, Maryland. On July 9, when the grungy veterans of the 8th Ohio passed through the city, the 7th handed out lemonade to them.
 

16thVA

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I am sure you are right about the manpower. WV wasn't actually granted statehood until June 20, 1863, so their inclusion in the call is probably more of a courtesy or anticipation of statehood than anything else. I doubt Washington had any belief they would see a large body of troops coming out of WV.
Here's an editorial from the Daily Intelligencer about the situation just one day after Lincoln's request. It should be noted that the 20,000 troops mentioned include about 6,000 men who came directly from Ohio and PA to enlist. Even granted statehood Wheeling had no real control over most of the new state.

The article is the first one on the left.

Wheeling Daily Intelligencer, June 15, 1863
 

rpkennedy

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Here are the units sent to the Army of the Potomac from the Washington defenses on or about June 26:

Brigadier General George Stannard's Brigade (12th, 13th, 14th, 15th, 16th Vermont)
Brigadier General Alexander Hays' Brigade (39th, 111th, 125th, 126th New York)
First Brigade, Pennsylvania Reserve Corps (1st, 2nd, 6th, 13th Pennsylvania Reserves)
Third Brigade, Pennsylvania Reserve Corps (5th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th Pennsylvania Reserves)
2nd Connecticut Battery
9th Massachusetts Battery
Major General Julius Stahel's Cavalry Division (command was given to Brigadier General Judson Kilpatrick)
- Brigadier General J.T. Copeland's Brigade (1st, 5th, 6th, 7th Michigan)
- Colonel R. Butler Price's Brigade (Companies A & C, 1st Ohio, 2nd, 18th Pennsylvania, 1st Vermont)
- Colonel O. DeForest's Brigade (5th New York, 1st West Virginia)
Battery I, 1st Michigan Light Artillery

Ryan
 

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