Author Archives: The Staff

About The Staff

Staff of Gettysburg National Military Park

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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The Widow and Her Farm

In comparison to other farm houses in rural Adams County in 1863, the home of Lydia Leister was non-descript. The wood frame and clapboarded house was very compact and humble, situated on a small, 9-acre farm that included a log barn, … Continue reading

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A Reason to Visit Gettysburg in the Winter: The 2015 Winter Lecture Series

“So, what do you guys do in the winter?” I’ve probably been asked that question a hundred times, and at each of the four different National Parks I’ve worked at. It’s a common misconception that the ranger staff hibernate over the … Continue reading

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Gettysburg – the Good, the Bad and the Ugly

First the good: Earlier this month Gettysburg National Military Park was honored when the head of our monument preservation team received a national award for excellence for the care of monuments, cannon, plaques, fences, headstones and signs. All the monuments … Continue reading

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“Is the Track Clear to Shohola?” – Gettysburg Fatalities in Pennsylvania’s Second Bloodiest Railroad Cut

When one hears the term, “the railroad cut,” students of the Battle of Gettysburg may automatically be tempted to think of the slash in the ground extending through much of the July 1st battlefield, and the casualties it yielded.  However, … Continue reading

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Gettysburg’s Forgotten Governor: Conrad Baker

The town of Gettysburg abounds with stories of interesting people who fought for both the North and the South during the American Civil War.  Many of these stories have been told by historians and educators since the end of the … Continue reading

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