One of the most poignant moments of the Great Reunion occurred on the afternoon of July 3rd, 1913 when veterans from both sides reenacted Pickett’s Charge. We briefly mentioned that reenactment in our post about Bruce Catton’s article about the Great Reunion in American Heritage, and we will explore that occasion in more detail in at least one post later on.
This post, however, is not about the Pickett’s Charge reenactment but rather another “confrontation” of the friendly reunion variety. The Gettysburg Times reported in its July 3rd, 1913 edition in a front page story what had occurred the night before on Wednesday, July 2nd:
MARCH ON REBS
Blues Advanced on the Grays Wednesday Night
Union Veterans from Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and other states in the exclusively Northern camps marched up Seminary Ridge Wednesday night yelling, “We’ve got the Johnnies this time.”
“All right, boys, come on, we’re all ready for you,” replied the Johnnies.
In the ranks of the veterans marched men with one leg, one arm or crippled otherwise. Some hobbled along on crutches.
The Johnnies received them with open arms and it was not many minutes before the Confederate camps of Maryland, Virginia, Mississippi, West Virginia, South Carolina, and other states were scenes of parades, men in gray touching elbows with men in blue.
The “charge” and the parades were followed by camp fires of the Blue and Gray.