Narrated by Keith Carradine, Gettysburg and Stories of Valor - CIVIL WAR MINUTESʼ III focuses on one of the most exciting periods in United States history, America's Civil War. This 3-hour documentary captures the scenic beauty of the Gettysburg battlefield, examines rare Civil War artifacts and tells the personal stories of the men who fought in the war. The most famous and perhaps most important conflict of the Civil War occurred July 1st, 2nd and 3rd of 1863 in the small town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. A thriving rural community of 2,400 people and the home of Pennsylvania College, some of the finest, prosperous farms can be found there. The quiet town transforms into a war zone as the South invades a Northern state for the first time, colliding at the Battle of Gettysburg. This move of bold aggression is a key turning point in the war and forever changes the course of American history. In his famed Gettysburg Address, President Abraham Lincoln refers to the battlefield as "hallowed ground" and proclaims that the deceased soldiers, among them President Richard Nixon's great-grandfather, George, brought forth a "new birth of freedom" for the American people. Veterans of the Battle of Gettysburg are acutely aware of its importance and seek to protect and memorialize its grounds. In 1895, the battlefield becomes a National Military Park maintained by the federal government, for all Americans to visit and ponder the great deeds of bravery and sacrifice that occurred there. Great Leaders and Little-Known Heroes With the nation divided, men from all walks of life join the conflict. A few prove to be great leaders that inspire their comrades and find fame after the war. One such man is General Winfield Scott Hancock whose leadership greatly contributes to the Union victory at Gettysburg. A consummate soldier, Hancock remains in the Army as one of its senior generals for nearly twenty-one years until his death from complications of an earlier wound. Upon hearing of his death, General William T. Sherman remarks that he "regarded Hancock as one of the greatest soldiers in history." Another great commander, Confederate General Lewis Armistead is injured while directing his troops into the Union line. Realizing the seriousness of his wounds, Armistead utters a Masonic distress call to those around him. Ironically, opposing Union soldiers recognize the phrase and come to his aid. Armistead dies days later, but a granite monument on the battlefield now commemorates an incredible moment during the battle and one of the "bravest of the brave" who fell at Gettysburg. Great leaders are not the only men with a story to tell. Thirty-year-old Private Henry "Will" Mayo enlists in his regiment as a drummer given his age and talent. In time of battle, musicians who are typically noncombatants are assigned to help the wounded. Instruments are dropped and the musicians become stretcher-bearers instead. No friend or officer records how or where in the Battle of Gettysburg Will Mayo loses his drum and his life; but his abandoned drum is found and thoughtfully returned to his family years later, providing a priceless reminder of Will's courage. Edward Geary enlists in the 28th Pennsylvania Infantry commanded by his father, General John Geary. A capable soldier at age sixteen, he is promoted to lieutenant, but later meets his untimely demise in a battle known as Wauhatchie. One officer writes that General Geary can be seen, "standing with bowed head on the summit of the knoll, while before him lay the lifeless form of a Lieutenant of Artillery. There were many other dead, but none attracted his attention save this one. For he was his son." This striking account about the loss of one's child resides among numerous personal stories that put a human face on the war.