Little Round Top accounts in the Lincoln County News.
Quite a bit of controversy would arrise over how the charge on Little Round Top had come about.
More can be seen in Spear vs. Spear
William Livermore who was a member of the color guard during the memorable charge on Little Round Top
provided his diary to the Lincoln County News. Here he had written,
We stood until our center had lost half our men, and we knew we could not stand longer. We were ordered to charge
them when there were two to one. With fixed bayonets and a yell we rushed on them, which so frightened them, that not another shot was fired on us."
In December of 1883 Nichols would write to the Lincoln County News in response to Reverend Gerrish's book Army Life
where the Reverend had suggested after the order to charge was given the regiment hesitated until Melcher sprang up "with a flash of his sword" to encourage them on.
I say, and I know what I say to be true, that instead of any hesitation on the part of Co. K, and before the completion of
the order, it was anticipated by them, and when the command "Charge" was given they were already on the move, and that with such a rush that
the officer who could get in front of them must have been exceedingly alert in his movements.
Nichols may have missed the fact that Gerrish also made the claim in a National Tribune article Battle of Gettysburg
In 1889 Chamberlain would respond to this debate in the speech he gave at the dedication of the 20th Maine monument
"I am sorry to have heard it intimated that any hesitated when that order was given. That was not
so. No man hesitated. There might be the appearance of it to those who did no understand the whole
situation. The left wing bent back like an ox-bow, or sharp lunette, hand to take some little time to
come up into the line of our general front, so as to form the close, continuous edge which was to
strike like a sword-cut upon the enemy's ranks. By the time they had got up and straightened the line,
the centre and salient, you may be sure, was already in motion."