Sickles at Gettysburg, by licensed battlefield guide James Hessler, is the most deeply researched, full-length biography to appear on this remarkable American icon. And it is long overdue.No individual who fought at Gettysburg was more controversial than Major General Sickles. By 1863, Sickles was notorious as a disgraced former Congressman who murdered his wife's lover on the streets of Washington and used America's first temporary insanity defence to escape justice. With his political career in ruins, Sickles used his connections with President Lincoln to obtain a prominent command in the Army of the Potomac's Third Corps, despite having no military experience. At Gettysburg, he openly disobeyed orders in one of the most controversial decisions in military history.No single action dictated the battlefield strategies of Robert E. Lee more than Sickles' unauthorised advance to the Peach Orchard, and the mythic defence of Little Round Top might have occurred quite differently were it not for General Sickles. Fighting heroically, Sickles lost his leg on the field and thereafter worked to remove General Meade from command of the army. Sickles spent the remainder of his checkered life declaring himself the true hero of Gettysburg.About the AuthorJames A. Hessler is a native of Buffalo, NY, he resides in Gettysburg with his wife and children.

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