Confederate Headquarters – Longstreet’s First Corps – McLaws’s Division


The monument to Semmes’s Brigade is southwest of Gettysburg on West Confederate Avenue (West Confederate Avenue – Part 5 tour map)  A position tablet is on Brooke Avenue in the Rose Woods (Brooke Avenue tour map).

Monument to Semmes' Georgia Brigade on the Gettysburg battlefield

Monument to Semmes’ Georgia Brigade on the Gettysburg battlefield

From the monument

C. S. A.
Army of Northern Virginia
Longstreet’s Corps McLaws’s Division
Semmes’s Brigade
10th 50th 51st 53rd Georgia Infantry

July 2. Arrived about 3.30 P. M. and formed line 50 yards west of this. Advanced about 5 P.M. in support of Kershaw and Anderson and took a prominent part in the severe and protracted conflict on Rose Hill and in the ravine and forest east of there and in the vicinity of the Loop. Participated also in the general advance late in the evening by which the Union forces were forced out of the Wheatfield and across Plum Run Valley. Brig Gen. Paul J. Semmes fell mortally wounded in the ravine near the Loop.

July 3. During the afternoon Anderson’s Brigade being withdrawn for duty elsewhere the Brigade was left in the occupancy of the woodland south of the Wheatfield. At 1 P. M. under orders it resumed its original position near here.

July 4. About midnight began the march to Hagerstown Md.

Present about 1200 Losses 430

Location of the monument

The monument is southwest of Gettysburg on the west side of West Confederate Avenue, which is one way southbound at this point. It is about 200 feet south of the parking lot for the Warfield Ridge observation tower and just past the State of Georgia monument. (39°47’55.4″N 77°15’21.5″W)

Position Marker in the Rose Woods

Marker to Semmes' Confederate Brigade at Gettysburg

Marker to Semmes’ Confederate Brigade at Gettysburg

From the marker in the Rose Woods

Army of Northern Virginia
Longstreet’s Corps McLaw’s Division
Semmes’ Brigade
10th 50th 51st 53rd Georgia Infantry

July 2. Arrived on the field about 3.30 P. M. Advanced about 5 o’clock in support of Kershaw’s and Anderson’s Brigades and took an active part in the conflict on Rose Hill and in the ravine and forest east of there in the vicinity of the Loop. Participated in the general advance late in the evening by which the Union forces were forced out of the Wheatfield and across Plum Run Valley. Brig. Gen. J. Semmes fell mortally wounded in the ravine near the Loop.

Location of the marker

The marker is south of Gettysburg on the west side of Brooke Avenue in the Rose Woods. Brooke Avenue is a one way extension  of Cross and Ayers Avenue that must be accessed from Sickles Avenue or Wheatfield Road. (39°47’42.4″N 77°14’49.6″W)

About Paul Jones Semmes

Brigadier General Paul Jones Semmes commanded the brigade at Gettysburg. Semmes was born in Wilkes County, Georgia. He was a banker, plantation owner and militia officer in Columbus. At the beginning of the war he became colonel of the 2nd Georgia Infantry Regiment before he was promoted to brigadier general in March of 1862. He commanded the brigade in the battles of the Army of Northern Virginia from the Peninsula Campaign until Gettysburg.

Semmes was mortally wounded in the thigh during the attack on July 2nd, and died on July 10th in Martinsburg, West Virginia. When Semmes was wounded the brigade was taken over by Colonel Goode Bryan.

See more on the history of the infantry regiments in Semmes’s Brigade

10th Georgia  – 50th Georgia51st Georgia53rd Georgia