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Life of General Meade.—His Military Elucation, Career, and Services.—The Victory of Gettysburg gained under unfavorable circumstances.—Great credit due to Meade.—What would have been the Consequences of a Defeat at Gettysburg.—The North ill-prepared for Defence.—Political Inquietude.—Alarm at the North at the Prospect of Lee's Invasion.—The People Arming at last.—Action of Governor Curtin, of Pennsylvania.-The People of Penn
sylvania slow to move.—Their Excitement and Alarm.—What was done by the Pennsylvanians.—President Lincoln
calls out the Militia.-His Proclamation.—Proclamations of the Governors.--Prompt Response of New York and
New Jersey.—Their Militia early in the Field.
GENERAL MEADE, who had so signally illustrated his assumption of the command of the Army of the Potomac by the great victory of Gettysburg, was born in Spain, in 1815. His parents, who were Americans, were residing at the time of his birth in Barcelona. After their return to the United States, one of their sons entered the navy, and the other, George C. Meade, the present General, became, in 1831, a cadet at West Point. He graduated on the 30th of June, 1835, number nineteen, in a large class. On the 1st of July, 1835, he was appointed a brevet second lieutenant in the Third Artillery, and in December following was promoted to the full rank. On the 26th of October, 1836, he resigned and engaged in some civil occupation, in which he remained until the 19th of May, 1842, when he re-entered the U. S. military service with the appointment of second lieutenant of Topographical Engineers. Serving during the war with Mexico, he was honorably mentioned in the official reports for his good conduct at the battle of Palo Alto, and subse
quently, after bearing a distinguished part in the battle of Monterey, was brevetted a first lieutenant, dating from September 23, 1846. In August, 1851, he was promoted to a first lieutenancy, and on the 19th of May, 1856, to a captaincy, which rank he held at the beginning of the rebellion. When the call was made by the President for 300,000 volunteers, Captain Meade was appointed one of the brigade commanders of the division of Pennsylvania troops under General McCall, and raised to the rank of brigadier-general of volunteers, with a commission dating August 31, 1861. When McCall's division was organized at Tenallytown, near Washington, General Meade commanded the second brigade, and joined effective’v in the work. In the advance of the Army of the Potomac toward Manassas, in March, 1862, the division in which General Meade commanded was attached to the first corps, under General McDowell, with whom it remained north of the Rappahannock, until after the battle of
Hanover Station. The division now