In this book, the civilians who lived through the battle of Gettysburg recount this pivotal event in the American Civil War in their own words. The eyewitness accounts, spanning from June 15, 1863, through Lincolns address in November of that year to the throngs gathered to open the national cemetery on the battlefield, are compelling tales told by those literally trapped inside the lines of the two great, warring armies. Many of the leading characters are women of strong character coping with situations they had never anticipated and could not hope to prepare for. The interactions between the townsfolk and the soldiers are fascinating reading. Over 160 historical photographs and illustrations accompany the text. To the authors knowledge, never before have some of these photographs been shown or the narratives of the civilians, literally cut off from the outside world by the war, been told so completely and in their own words. The stories are gleened from diaries, letters, newspaper articles, interviews, and books written by the civilians after the fact. No effort has been made to change any of their language for any reason. There was no need. In this book, certain myths are exploded and one of the most monumental moments in American history comes to life before the readers eyes.