Gettysburg

ellaaddison

Baltimore Md, United States

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This information was taken from Gettysburg: Stories of Men and Monuments As Told By Battlefield Guides by Frederick W. Hawthorne this book is a must if your interested in locating and photographing monuments

Location: South Hancock Avenue / Dedicated October 29, 1910/Sculptor: Samuel Murray

The portrait statue of Father William Corby honors one of the hundreds of chaplains present with the armies at Gettysburg. Serving in the capacity of chaplain of the Irish brigade’s 88th New York Infantry, Corby’s actions the afternoon of July 2 were to be remembered as part of the rich folk lore of this battle. As the pressure on General Sickle’s 3rd Corps increased, reinforcements were rushed in to bolster the line. General Winfield Scott Hancock ordered one of his divisional commanders, General John C. Caldwell, to move his unit to the relief of the embattled regiments of Sickle’s corps. Among Caldwells four Brigades was Patrick Kelly’s Irish Brigade . While the regiments began to form up, Father Corby went to the front of the column and asked permission to delay the movement a few minutes while he spoke to the men. Stepping atop a boulder, he raised his right hand and as the men stood with bowed heads, the sound of battle raging to the south and west, Corby called upon God to grant them courage, then pronounced general absolution. The brigade marched off into battle. Following the Civil War, Corby’s service to his fellow men included two terms as president of the University of Notre Dame. Nearly a half century after Corby’s actions at Gettysburg, General St. Clair A. Mulholland, an eyewitness to the event, enlisted the aid of the four hundred member Catholic Alumni Society to honor the chaplain with a portrait statue on the field. Using funds raised within the Catholic community, this statue was created of Father Corby posed at the moment of pronouncing absolution. It was mounted on the site where the event actually took place and in some accounts, on the exact boulder. An indentical copy of the statue was placed on the campus of Notre Dame the following year

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