Jeb Stuart's Infamous Action at East Cavalry Field.
Rare set of four progress maps of the Battle of Gettysburg prepared by John Badger Bachelder to show the J.E.B. Stuart's July 2nd attack on the forces of Daniel McMurtie Gregg and George Armstrong Custer.
The maps were prepared in 1880, based on minute surveying and very careful historical research. The maps show one of the pivotal events of the Battle of Gettysburg. The action was a tactical draw but foiled Lee and Stuart's general strategy. Custer twice had his horse killed during the battle and famously led the 7th Michigan in a counter-attack in which he yelled, "Come on, you Wolverines!"
Jeb Stuart's conduct during the Gettysburg Campaign has come under scrutiny since the time of the Battle itself, and it continues to this day among those who see Stuart's failures as major contributing factors in Lee's eventual lack of success during the Campaign.
Stevenson (327) says of the set:
Detailed topographic map with spot elevations and contours "given for every change of four feet in elevation. . . Every object is represented, as nearly as possible as it was at the time of the battle." Shows drainage, vegetation, roads, railroads, fences, and houses with names of residents.
Minute analysis of the movement of cavalry units of both armies, with names of commanding officers and the period fo time spent in a particular position. Dotted lines and arrows indicate the movement of the troops.
Nelson & Pohanka, Mapping the Civil War, page 101:
Historian John B. Bachelder prepared this 1880 plat, one of four sequential surveys of the cavalry battle that occurred east of Gettysburg on July 3, 1863. It depicts J.E.B. Stuart's Confederate horsemen massing for an assault on General Gregg's Federal troopers.
The set is evidently extremely rare on the antiquarian market; we locate no complete sets at auction in RBH or OldMaps.com, nor have we had the maps before.
Bachelder did another series of important Gettysburg maps titled Map of Gettysburg July 1st, 2nd, 3rd 1863, which is also rare, but not nearly as rare as the present set.
John Bachelder (1825-1894) was a painter, lithographer, photographer and historian. Early in his career he produced an important and appealing body of work depicting sites and cities in the northeastern United States. On his own initiative he traveled to Gettysburg immediately after the battle, where he spent no fewer than 84 days traversing the field, making sketches, and interviewing witnesses to the events. Later that year he published a spectacular and detailed bird’s-eye view of Gettysburg, his first published depiction of the battlefield. He went on to become the preeminent 19th-century historian of the battle and for years served as director of the Gettysburg Battlefield Memorial Association.