Lt. Col. Bayard Wilkeson, Battery G, 4th U.S. Artillery - I10132
“Who can write the history of a battle whose eyes are immovably fastened upon a central figure of transcendingly absorbing interest—the dead body of an oldest born son, crushed by a shell in a position where a battery should never have been sent, and abandoned to death in a building where surgeons dared not to stay?” - Sam Wilkeson, New York Times Correspondent
On July 1, 1863, the first day of the Battle of Gettysburg, Pa., Lt. Col. Baynard Wilkeson, Battery G, 4th U.S. Artillery positioned four Napoleon guns on top of what will be known as Barlow’s Knoll.
Wilkeson was the 19-year-old son of New York Times war correspondent Samuel Wilkeson, embedded with the Army of the Potomac.
Wilkeson was positioned less than 1,200 yards from the Confederate battery. One of Wilkeson’s guns struck the muzzle face
of one of the Rebel’s Napoleons, putting it out of commission.
While Wilkeson was on horseback directing his men, a shot mangled his right leg and killed his horse.
Under fire he tied a tourniquet on his leg, used his pen knife to amputate the stump and had his men carry him to a nearby house, where he would die.
His replacement deemed the position too deadly and use ropes to drag the guns off the knoll.