The High Water Mark
The High Water Mark is the popular nickname for the focal point of the climactic Confederate charge on the third day of the battle of Gettysburg. After failing to circle the flanks of the well-defended Union lines arrayed along Cemetery Ridge during the first two days of the battle, Robert E. Lee decided to launch an attack on the center of the line. Early in the afternoon of July 3, an artillery assault (that mainly overshot the Union lines) was followed a ground attack, popularly known as Pickett's charge, of approximately 12,500 troops. The troops, marching nearly a mile across open fields under steady fire, were repulsed at the top of the ridge, with nearly half being killed, wounded, captured or missing.
The defeat of the assault marked the end of heaviest fighting of the battle of Gettysburg, and a turning point in the Civil War.
(Click to enlarge smaller images)