The monument to the 1st Division, 2nd Corps of the Army of the Potomac is south of Gettysburg on Hancock Avenue. (Hancock Avenue Part 1 tour map)
Brigadier General John C. Caldwell commanded the 1st Division at Gettysburg. He had been principal of an academy in Maine before the war.
On the afternoon of July 2nd he was ordered to take his division south from its position on Cemetery Ridge to the Wheatfield to counterattack the Confederate’s assault against Sickles’ 3rd Corps. Caldwell’s attack was hurried and poorly coordinated but cleared the Wheatfield and drove into the Rose Woods. But the division was quickly outflanked, and Caldwell was forced to withdraw in some confusion with heavy losses.
After dark the division returned to its original position on Cemetery Ridge. On July 3rd it sat out the bombardment preceding Pickett’s Charge with few casualties, then remained spectators as the Confederate attack struck the rest of the Second Corps just to the north.
From the monument
Army of the Potomac
Brig. General John C. Caldwell
July 2. Arrived about 7 a.m. and went into position on the right of the Third Corps on the line between the Cemetery and Round Top. The Second Division on the right. Between 5 and 6 p.m. went to the Wheatfield subject to orders of Gen. Sykes in support of Third line. The line previously occupied by Third Brigade First Division Third Corps. Was engaged with Anderson’s Brigade Hood’s Division until sunset with heavy losses including Col. Cross and Gen. Zook killed early in the engagement. Returned to former position in Second Corps line.
July 3. The Division formed in single line threw up breastworks and remained in position until close of the battle.
Casualties Killed 18 Officers 169 Men Wounded 82 Officers 798 Men Captured or Missing 6 Officers 202 Men Total 1275
Location of the monument to the 1st Division, Second Corps at Gettysburg
The monument is south of Gettysburg on the east side of Hancock Avenue about 0.2 mile north of United States Avenue and 250 yards south of the State of Pennsylvania monument. (39°48’19.5″N 77°14’04.6″W)