On orders from Robert E. Lee, 12,500 young men emerged from the tree line visible over a mile from this point, and marched, not charged straight forward. From the beginning, they were fired upon by every Union cannon behind this wall and in all of the surrounding hills. Behind this stone wall waited 6000 union soldiers who opened fire as soon as the confederates were in range. The few confederates who reached the wall were quickly killed, wounded, or repulsed. Although this pointless blood letting was known as "Pickett's Charge", General Pickett led only one of the three divisions involved.