Well folks, after having a week off the weather still did not improve. Not only did we deal with rain on our field trip this week, we had to handle much colder temperatures than we did at Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville. So where did we embark to this week? That question is as easy to answer as it was to get there. This week we started part one of the three week series of the battle of Gettysburg; my personal High Water Mark in Civil War studies. Our tour guide for?day one?was none other than our very distinguished and fearless director, Dr. Guelzo.
The day started out with great success as everyone praised the later starting time of 9:00 A.M. rather than the usual earlier times. Unfortunately our joys for starting later were soon dashed as we stepped outside into the cold and wet weather of Adams County. Nonetheless, we made our first stop at the rest stop across from the John Buford, John Reynolds, and Calef's guns monuments along the Chambersburg Pike where we listened to the story of the opening shots of the battle from the shelter of the rest stop itself. Next on our agenda was a majority of Stone Avenue and the site of Reynolds' mortal wound in McPherson's Woods. Scott Ackerman became our tour guide at the next site, the Unfinished Railroad Cut as he told us the story of the 14 th Brooklyn and Colonel Fowler. We finished up the morning part of our tour with Sarah Handley, Libby Whitney, and Ed Vogt as our tour guides along present day Doubleday Avenue discussing the actions of the 83 rd NY, 16 th ME, and the lone Confederate regiment, the 30 th N.C.
Lunch was held in the Appleford dining hall, otherwise known as the living room, to the delight of all as shelter from the rain and cold was provided as well as yet another screening of the movie Gettysburg due in large part to our resident John Reynolds and John Buford addict, James Cousins. After lunch we proceed to hear about the plight of the 11 th Corps at Bloecher's Knoll, or present day Barlow's Knoll. The weather at this point still was not cooperating in regards to the cold but at least the rain was starting to lighten up to the point of a light mist. From the knoll we inched closer to the town as the Union collapse began to happen in our story line. We stopped on the grounds of the Lutheran Theological Seminary to have a view of the cupola as well as the retreat of the 24 th Michigan. Further our view of the street fighting we arrived at the last bastion of the Union army and their cover of retreat at Coster Avenue where Coster's brigade was positioned. Here we studied the moons of both the locals and the 11 th Corps and even the larger than life Paul Dunkleman painting.
|?||We arrived at the East Cemetery Gatehouse for our final stop to look at the place where multiple generals of the Union army met on the evening of July 1, 1863. Until next week and day two of the battle Gettysburg, try to stay dry out there!!??|