I opened my mailbox today and waiting for me was my contributor’s copy of Gettysburg Magazine issue #52. On page 69 is my article “Angel of the Wheatfield.”
In this article, I detail the story of Lt. Thomas Parks Oliver of the 24th Georgia who on July 2, 1862 took pity on a dying enemy crying out to him from the Wheatfield. Oliver crawled into the wheat and brought Lt. James J. Purman of the 140th Pennsylvania out on his back. The article is complete with a map — it was a cool experience getting to work with the magazine’s own mapmaker who constructed a map just for this article and worked with me on the proper caption for it. Also included are pictures of Purman and his friend and fellow Pennsylvanian, James Milton Pipes.
Unfortunately I was not able to track down any pictures of Thomas Oliver. In my quest I even had the occasion to speak with Oliver’s grandson, but sadly there were no photos to be found. Years after the war, Purman would track Oliver down and the two would become great friends in their latter years.
It is a great honor to have my work published by this fine magazine and have the oportunity to work with their editor, Dr. James Pula, in bringing the story of Oliver and Purman to print.