Army of Northern Virginia

Chapter 1 – This poem focuses on the Army of Northern Virginia, led by Robert E. Lee, moving north to break the will of the people in the North to continue the war. A military victory in the North could have achieved this, and they could have marched on to Washington D.C. Originally, they were headed for Harrisburg. Harrisburg, the capital of Pennsylvania, was located at the intersection of important railroads. It was an important transportation and supply center. The Confederate troops of Richard S. Ewell, one of Lee’s Generals leading the Second Corps, threatened the area around Harrisburg before they were called south to fight at Gettysburg.

by Christopher Rudolph © 2015

Army of Northern Virginia

Chapter 1 – Army of Northern Virginia Marches North


The third summer

Of the Civil War, June, 1863

Army of Northern Virginia marches north

From Dixie led by Lee


Provisions and plentiful food

Robert E. Lee wants to acquire

Political battle victory

Confederacy desires


60,000 crack infantry

Equipped for warfare

Move stealthily on the tramp

Behind the Blue Ridge frontier


By end of month

Panic, rage, despair

Closes in on Harrisburg

Within North’s own lair


The Union Army

They have come to destroy

In the land North of Washington

It’s part of their ploy


For then they foresee

The war will cease

On Lincoln’s desk

Place ultimatum of peace


From Jefferson Davis

Demanding recognition

Of the Southern Confederacy

Or face total demolition


Go to Chapter 2

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