Author Archives: The Staff

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Staff of Gettysburg National Military Park

How Not to Conduct a Reconnaissance: Capt. Samuel R. Johnston, July 2, 1863 – Part I

One of the enduring mysteries of the Gettysburg Campaign is the morning reconnaissance conducted by Captain Samuel R. Johnston. Johnston, at the behest of Robert E. Lee, was ordered to scout the position of left flank of the Army of … Continue reading

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Battle of Gettysburg from Above

The winter is a great time to visit the battlefield from a sight line perspective. Foliage is down allowing for unbroken views into the wooded slopes of Culp’s Hill, Little Round and Oak Hill. A layer of snow further accentuates … Continue reading

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Caring for Gettysburg’s Largest Artifact

It’s checkup time for the Gettysburg Cyclorama painting. Gettysburg National Military Park’s largest artifact requires special care and attention. To ensure that the painting remains in good condition, David L. Olin, an acclaimed painting conservator who led a five-year conservation … Continue reading

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The History of Living History at Gettysburg National Military Park

Gettysburg National Military Park owes a huge debt of gratitude to the countless hours of work performed by our dedicated crew of volunteers. From the Visitor Center to the Cannon Shop, the Education Center to the farthest corners of the … Continue reading

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The Boy Scouts of America at Gettysburg, 1913

It was the fiftieth anniversary of the battle of Gettysburg and the celebration planned was unique- a huge gathering of Civil War veterans, at least forty thousand of them! The Pennsylvania Commission that was busy planning the reunion and anniversary … Continue reading

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Auction Skull is not from the Battle of Gettysburg

A detective story that began last June with an attempted auction of a human skull, reportedly from the battle of Gettysburg, now has a new chapter. A scientific study by the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of Natural History, conducted at … Continue reading

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Thoughts on Harry Pfanz

On the early afternoon of January 31st, the staff at Gettysburg National Military Park received a jolting bit of news:  one of our own, in a large and treasured sense, had passed.  And while the announcement of the death of … Continue reading

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Jeff Davis, Joseph Gutelius, and the Flag of the 150th Pennsylvania

Most visitors to Gettysburg are unaware of the curious connection between Confederate President Jefferson Davis and one of the many Union soldiers killed during the fighting around the small Pennsylvania town.  The story begins on the first day of the battle … Continue reading

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Samuel P. Bates – “Chronicler of the Pennsylvania Soldier”

In researching individual soldiers of the Civil War, the pre-eminent sources of information that come to mind are state rosters.  Among the more notable efforts are Frederick Phisterer’s work, New York in the War of the Rebellion, compiled in 1890, … Continue reading

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Gettysburg at 24 degrees

As we enjoy another winter here at Gettysburg National Military Park, the park staff invite you to remember that a winter’s walk on the Gettysburg battlefield offers a terrific opportunity to study topography as well as a time for quiet … Continue reading

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