In The Hands Of Providence
Chamberlain at Fredericksburg, Va., Dec. 13, 1862
Fourth in a Four Print Special Series from the Official Artist of the Motion Picture Gods and Generals
Limited Edition Print, Image size: 17 1/2” x 28”
950 Limited Edition Signed and Numbered
Finally, it was their turn. For hours, Lieutenant Colonel Joshua L. Chamberlain and the troops of the 20th Maine had awaited the command to enter combat at the Battle of Fredericksburg. The men from Maine watched with fascination and horror as wave after wave of their fellow soldiers courageously charged across a deadly, open field of fire – and were dashed to pieces by Southern artillery and infantry fire. Now their time had come – and their full initiation to combat would occur at one of the bloodiest battles of America’s bloodiest war. “I held my breath and set my teeth together,” one of the regiment’s officers would later recall, “determined not to show fear if I could….”
Faces fixed toward the enemy, they moved forward. Confederate artillery raked the regiment with deadly gusts – yet on they went. They charged “over fences and through hedges,” Chamberlain would recall, “over bodies of dead men and living ones, past four lines that were lying on the ground.” Like those who went before it, however, the 20th Maine was doomed to fail. After suffering an awful shredding, the regiment was forced back. Even so, on the plains of death at Fredericksburg, the men from Maine – and Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain – forged a reputation for coolness and courage that would follow them to other famous fields of fire and glory.