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Keep to Your Sabers, Men! - limited edition print
Generals Custer and Hampton, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, July 3, 1863




The Official Killer Angels Portfolio - First in a Series of Six Limited Edition Prints.

Image Size: 10" x 28 1/2".
Overall Size:16" x 33 1/2".
1500 Limited Edition Numbered and Signed.
50 Artist Proofs Numbered and Signed.

In looking for an exciting situation for the first print in the new Killer Angels portfolio, based on the battle of Gettysburg, I decided it should be a scene that had never been painted before. I wanted to show both sides and I also wanted to make it an action piece. When I read about the charges of Wade Hampton and George Armstrong Custer on the East Cavalry Field on July 3, 1863, I knew I had my moment!

The two forces charged headlong at each other at about 3:30 in the afternoon. The Union charged northeast and the Confederates southwest, accounting for the sunlight coming from behind them from the west. They hit with such force that the impact of horses and men was heard a mile away, tumbling them end over end. Wade Hampton, the South Carolinian and chief lieutenant of J.E.B. Stuart, led the charge of the Confederates and was badly wounded in the ensuing melee.

The 23 year old boy general, Custer led the Union charge with the now famous shout, "Come on you Wolverines!" to his Michigan brigade. He was credited by some with personally capturing the battle flag of Hampton.

The Confederates' weapon of choice at close quarters had usually been firearms. However, in this action, they chose to use their sabers, the favorite weapon of the Union cavalry. Leading his troops on, Hampton was heard to shout above the din, "Keep to your sabers, men! Keep to your sabers!"



 

 
All illustrations by Mort Künstler. Text by Michael Aubrecht, Dee Brown, Henry Steele Commager, Rod Gragg, Mort Künstler, Edward Lengel, James McPherson, and James I. Robertson, Jr. - Copyright © 2001-2018. All Rights Reserved. No part of the contents of this web site may be reproduced or utilized in any form by any means without written consent of the artist.