Gettysburg Review

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Kantor, MacKinlay. Gettysburg. New York: Civil History, Inc., 1952. This book report was written by Andrew Reggettz.

You could say that this book is a display of extreme violence that occurred in history. You could say that this book depicts the extent of self-inflicted damage to a country, two sides of one country that were so stubborn about their ideals that they killed one another, or a group’s pride in their states more than their nation. It is also about how wars damage the non-warriors. I believe that while those are sub-topics in the book, the main point the author is trying to make is that this event really did happen. As difficult as it may be to comprehend the fact that 618,000 Americans killed each other in three days because they disagreed with their ideas, this happened. Kantor’s goal was most likely to simply inform readers about what happened during a battle that wasn’t so simple.

Gettysburg begins with a description of the town. It is a small rural community of farmers. The houses are built sturdy, and there are even a few long gravel roads. The town has grown a lot since the 1860’s, but even today Gettysburg is too small to be called a city. A brick Lutheran seminary was in the center of the town, grand and sturdy. It functioned much as a university does today. This made it possible for people from Gettysburg to get a quality education. Just beyond that was another university, Penn College.

The people in Gettysburg did have a fine life. They were very well educated, often had occupations in the Senate and many luxuries in their town. The mainly German occupants in the nearby town also had many of the same living standards.

From upon a hill called Round Top, it is said that the entire town can be seen. On the other side, there was a road, a few miles long, which went to Maryland. On the left side of that road, when looked upon from Round Top, was an elevated strip of land that was very flat on top. In those days, this...
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