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Inside the Angle-1882

Discussion in 'Battle of Gettysburg' started by Gettysburg Greg, Mar 18, 2017 at 8:08 AM.

  1. Gettysburg Greg

    Gettysburg Greg Corporal

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    To maximize the accuracy of his 1883 painting, French artist Paul Philippoteaux not only visited the battlefield and interviewed many veterans, he also commissioned Gettysburg photographer William Tipton to photograph a 360 degree panorama from the point of view of the proposed Cyclorama. The artist had Tipton place men and horses at various locations within the photos to be used to provided perspective for the painting. One of Tipton's images faces west from Hancock Avenue that includes the area inside the Angle where the hand to hand fighting took place at the culmination of Longstreet's Assault on July 3, 1863. The photo, taken less than 20 years after the battle is practically unrecognizable when compared to the well manicured monument filled area we are familiar with today. Therefore, in order to better understand how the 1882 image relates to what we see today, I located three well known monuments approximately where they would be in Tipton's photograph. The 71st Pa monument on the right shows where the Angle is, then continuing along the wall to the left is the 72nd Pa musket swinging monument. Interesting that Tipton included a man figure shown coming over the wall right in the area. Many believe this is near where General Armistead crossed. Was Tipton intentionally simulating Armistead crossing the wall? Probably not, since Armistead is shown mounted in the Cyclorama. In addition to Tipton's photograph, I will include the same perspective as it appears in the painting. Interesting to note that Philippoteaux placed a runaway horse right where the horse is seen in the Tipton photo. Another subtle detail I noticed is that he even includes the furrows in the field that show up in Tipton's photo.
    tipton with co.jpg

    tip2.jpg
     

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  3. EJ Zander

    EJ Zander Sergeant

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    Besides the leaves being off the trees is there any idea what month this was taken? I am looking at the field the horse is in and trying to figure out if it was worked with a harrow or has been planted with a hoe drill. The linear stubble in the bottom of the divets has me thinking hoe drill for grain since seed would germinate in the the valleys and the row spacing is about right. But some of the rows are off in center. Having straight rows is pride thing when planting, particularly when many people will see your work like at Gettysburg even back then.
    The linear valleys wouldnt be so pronounced after the growing season which has me thinking harrow. If worked with harrow after the season I would expect the ground to be rougher.
    Month of year would help me figure it out. The horse looks to be between two dead furrows (brighter while lines in the soil that run the length of the field) which means the intail field prep was done with a plow. That would be normal practice of the time.

    Cool stuff. Different people of different disciplines and interests can look at an old pic and see different things. Thats what makes the study of the pics fun I guess.
     
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  4. infomanpa

    infomanpa Private

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    Capture.PNG Great post, Greg. I, too, have interest in these photo "angles." You hit the reference locations right on the head. I was playing around with Google Earth and snapped a picture to try and match yours. I wonder why the post rail fence that was built on top of the stone wall was never restored to what it looked like during the battle. I also noticed that there were trees lining the wall, too. That would have changed the visibility. I always thought that the Union defenders of the Philadelphia Brigade had a clear view.
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2017 at 3:14 PM
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  5. Bee

    Bee 2nd Lieutenant

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    Thanks, guys: I love the Cyclorama -- it was my favourite part of the Visitor Center tour :smile:
     
  6. Gettysburg Greg

    Gettysburg Greg Corporal

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    Well done, @infomanpa. the trees at the wall surprised me, too. I guess they were probably there 19 years before, too. It does change the general impression of it being a completely open field of fire. Thanks for confirming m proposed monument locations-I spent a lot of time trying to figure out exactly where they were.
     
  7. jay gale

    jay gale First Sergeant

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    that is really cool, thank you for doing that Greg.......

    Like Bee, I love the cyclorama, have only seen it once on my trips to Gettysburg and that was in the old building. I usually hit the visitors center at peak hours and don't want to waste my battlefield time waiting in any lines, so haven't revisited it since it's restoration.
     
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  8. infomanpa

    infomanpa Private

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    I've thought about it a little and realized that those trees look pretty young and may not have been there during the battle. They may have been allowed to grow along the wall until they were finally cleared when the national park took over.
     
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  9. DavidGroton

    DavidGroton Cadet

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    @EJ Zander : The wikipedia page for the "Gettysburg Cyclorama" sates that Philippoteaux arrived in Gettysburg in April, 1882 to sketch and photograph the battlefield with Tipton.

     
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  10. EJ Zander

    EJ Zander Sergeant

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    Thank you sir. By the looks of the vegetation in the pic Id say first week or early second week of April. Thinking its post season work. Maybe a crop planted late fall. Grains would need soil temps atleast in the 40s to germinate. If planted that guy on the horse isnt doing anyone any favors by riding thru it.
    Field over at the Codori place just above the guy standing on the wall looks freshly worked. If you look close on the right margin of the field along split rail fence I think I can make out semi circuclar patterns where the guy made his swings at the end each pass. The swing pattern looks kinda wide so I thinking its been harrowed. My computer screen is small so its hard for me to make it out very well. Fun to exmaine though.
     
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  11. Wallyfish

    Wallyfish Sergeant Trivia Game Winner

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    I must say that the new Cyclorama presentation is outstanding. It is far superior to its predecessor, although the old round building was cool. The light and sound show is very impressive with the base diorama putting icing on the cake of the new presentation.

    I have been to the "new" visitor center only twice (other than quick book store stops) as my Field time is THE reason I visit Gettysburg. Although on a hot/cold or wet day, it offers a welcome break. It is hard to believe that the 10th anniversary of the new VC is quickly approaching. Likewise, I can't believe that 4 years have passed from the 15oth celebration.

    Back to the painting. Cushing's Battery was in this general area on Day 3. In the segment below of the cyclorama, Cushing is pictured in the center, leaning against the left side of the canon.

    IMG_0124.JPG



    I copied the photo below from the web that is supposedly Armistead being shot while mounted. You can also see Cushing leaning on the cannon on the left side of this photo as well. I thought "Lo" was charging on foot, not on horseback.

    I have always wondered how accurate this painting was. For reference, use the white horse with the mounted flag bearer
    to stitch the photos together. He is found on the left side on Greg's post and on the left side of these Cyclorama shots.

    Is Lo correctly indentified below and how accurate is the relationship of the key subjects?

    IMG_0125.JPG
     
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