The slim, erect officer in the Union blue, looking taller than he was, peered down the rocky slopes of Little Round Top. Clouds of smoke and dust obscured his view, but what he saw forced his face into lines of decision. His vivid blue eyes narrowed, and the lips, almost covered by a sweeping brown mustache, drew into a thin line as he calculated the effects of a move which he could scarcely hope to carry off but which he must make to save his command from defeat or capture and prevent the entire left flank of the Union line at Gettysburg from being rolled up. Once the Confederates seized Little Round Top, the battle was lost for the Union and Lee's invasion of the North would be a political threat, encouraging the peace party elements in the North and perhaps influencing the European powers to reconsider the question of recognizing the Confederacy.
-Willard M. Wallace, Soul of the Lion: A Biography of General Joshua L. Chamberlain