On Saturday, June 27, 1863 after days of disappointment over Joseph Hooker’s inability to respond to Lee’s invasion of the North President Abraham Lincoln removed Hooker and named General George Meade as the new commander of the Union Army of the Potomac.
Thousands of Lee’s Confederates were in Pennsylvania, as yet not seriously opposed by Federal forces. Confederate General Jubal Early accepted the surrender of York, Pennsylvania but demanded clothing, rations, and gold from its citizenry. Other Confederate units moved toward Harrisburg, threatening the state capital.
It would be twenty-four additional hours before sufficient Union forces would arrive to confront Lee. General Meade, although expressing surprise over his appointment and acknowledging his limitations concerning the “exact condition of the troops and position of the enemy,” immediately prepared to attack Lee’s troops.