1. l have been to Gettysburg twice, spending days there the first time, like a lot of folks I have read a lot about that battle and due to the topography and preservation along with all of the markers the trip is well worthwhile. Sacred ground for the North and South.

  2. Excellent post this morning, Kim…..thank you.

    I’ve been to Gettysburg on two occasions. Once in the 60’s as a young boy and later as the father of teenage daughters, one who became a History Major and soaked up all that Gettysburg had to offer. I remember sitting in the visitors center and listening to Sam Waterston’s recitation of Lincolns’ Gettysburg Address over and over – a very moving speech.

    Gettysburg should be a required visit for all.

    Merry Christmas, my friend!

    Bonnettstrap (Mark)

  3. Excellent tour. I know just enough about that battle to benefit from this sort of thing, as it helps me fill in the gaps where I know there is much detail I don’t already know. It is such a large and complex battle I don’t expect to ever run out of gaps to be filled.

  4. A licensed battlefield guide is a good idea if you have the time and money. I took a horseback tour last time I was there. Nothing like the smell of horse piss and manure to start a hot July day. Now imagine 50,000 other horses there. (Guide’s note). I always find it interesting to see kids from the mid-West always at the Lee or NC memorial (one of these figures on the latter is the spitting image of my brother) staring across the valley to that knoll of trees. I think a little bit of Southernor seeps into them when they do.

    1. “…staring across the valley to that knoll of trees.”
      Go to the Spangler Barn where Pickett’s charge troops formed up, then walk east toward Seminary Ridge. All you can see to your front is the crest of the little knoll you’re walking up and sky.
      You reach the crest, you see a high 5 rail fence to clamber over and an uphill mile of open ground between you and your objective – about 50,000 pissed off Yankees sheltering behind a stone wall and boulders at the top of that rising ground, and a bunch of Yankee artillery opening on you in enfilade from the right and left.
      That’s when you say “Marse Robert, you outta your fucking mind?”

      1. Longstreet tried to tell him that. It didn’t stop 15,000 men from trying though. I’m pretty sure today both sides are saying “Lets Go Brandon”.

  5. I am what you would call a Civil War nut.

    I have been to nearly all of the major battlefields and quite a few of the minor ones. In the last 45 years, I have been to Gettysburg 8 times. The last three times, I have spent 3 to 4 days there. I learn something new every single time I go. (The new visitors center and museum is excellent.)

    The last time I was there, in the summer of 2018, I spent most of my time retracing the steps of several regiments both Union and Confederate over the course of the three day battle. On the first day’s battle, I was retracing one of the NC regiments into what was then known as the “unfinished railroad cut” . As I made my way down a washed out embankment to the tracks below, I slipped and fell. As I was picking myself back up, I looked up, and on the ground right there in front of my face was a spent minie ball.

  6. Great experience. Longstreet got criticized for the angle of attack on July 2 which was the crucial day. I stood where he did when he ordered the attack and you couldn’t see the key topography on the approach to Little Round Top.

    Visited most of the battlefields that haven’t disappeared under asphalt. Chickamauga is pretty pristine. Not so Stones River where the Confederates attacked the Walmart from the McDonalds. Three battlefields in the Wilderness are hard to get a sense of but that was true in in 1863-64 too. Kennesaw Mt was totally crazy. Hard to get on top on the paved trail in winter. In summer with people shooting at you it was basically impossible. Cold Harbor was crazy. Even Grant admitted that. The Crater was the great missed opportunity. People bash Burnside for that but his plan would have worked if Meade hadn’t vetoed it. Burnside essentially pre-invented German tactics from 1918 and trained up his black troops to break through, like the Germans did with their strosstruppen. Germans did it against far more formidable opposition. Interesting to speculate the impact on history if the war had ended then and it was the black troops who made the breakthrough.

  7. Was born in Gettysburg and partially raised there. Moved to FL in 1966 at age 11 and have never been back. The most amazing thing I saw at the museum was a wall inside with hundreds of examples of bullets that collided in mid air. Hundreds. It must have been hell on earth.

  8. I’m from central Pennsylvania and have visited Gettysburg several times. The best two visits were as a Boy Scout when our troop visited on two successive years in the early sixties. Both times, we were there for an entire weekend and camped at Spangler’s Spring. Didn’t encounter any of the ghosts reported on the History Channel even tho we wandered the woods at night.

  9. Gettysburg is well worth spending several days. I’ve been several times and learned something new each time.

    One of the events at the visitor center is An Evening with the Cyclorama. They discussed the cyclorama, what they were, how they were made then after a 45 minute presentation we spent another 45 minutes to an hour or so with the painting. It was very informative.


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