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Perspectives on Gettysburg July 2, 1863

A BGES Weekend Warrior Program

June 15-17, 2018

With Scott Hartwig from Gettysburg, PA

It has been called the best three hours of fighting ever done by any soldiers. Of the three days fighting at Gettysburg the most intriguing as always been Lee’s actions on Day 2 and the Union response to it. Entire tours have been designed around elements of the day and there is no end of debate on the merits or demerits of the day and the participants. The battle has a scholarly magazine devoted to it and any historian of note as well as many of little note has written their Gettysburg tome–few have had the luxury of living the battle day after day for years and years–meet one such man.

David Scott Hartwig was a senior historian for Gettysburg National Military Park and the National Park Service. Recently his scholarship was put on display by Johns Hopkins University Press with the publication of his book To Antietam Creek, The Maryland Campaign of 1862. This excellent monograph is being followed by a second book on the battle. This work is undisputed evidence of the analytic capacity of the author. Federal regulations restricted government officials from profiting by their jobs so Hartwig did not write on the battle where he worked–still in his position he was immersed in the battle and its resources both the field and the archives at the park. As a retiree he is now released from those restrictions and how you can walk the grounds with him and gain from his years of insight. It is a field experience that would be hard to duplicate with any other historian. I’ve been out with him and he is good! We are honored he has agreed to do this for you.

PLEASE NOTE YOU MUST BE PREPARED FOR EXTENSIVE WALKING AS MANY SITES ARE AWAY FROM PAVED ROADS. IF YOU WALK IN, YOU MUST BE PREPARED TO WALK OUT.

Itinerary

Friday, June 15, 2018

6:00 PM Check in at headquarters hotel for meet and greet and to pick up your map handout. Scott’s opening lecture will take a look at the Face of Battle at Gettysburg on July 2nd by exploring the nature of the battle that the soldiers and civilians on each side experienced. A spirited Q&A will follow before breaking so you can go get some dinner on your own.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

We will leave the hotel at 8:15 to travel to Seminary Ridge and the haunting North Carolina Monument where will discuss Lee’s and Meade’s plans for July 2nd. We will then move down Seminary Ridge to the Rogers Farm where we will discover and discuss what Longstreet found after his flank march and the alterations he made to Lee’s plans. We will also discuss how Daniel Sickles, a New York congressman, found himself advanced in front of the Union lines and in disobedience of Meade’s orders. Our next stop is at the north slope of Little Round Top where we will walk ½ mile to Strong Vincent’s position on the dominating terrain. Once there we will examine their defensive alignment that would accept Law’s and Robertson’s attacks. After leaving the 20th Maine position we will go to the line of the Gettysburg Trolley to get a unique perspective of the fighting in the Devil’s Den between the Texas Brigade and Benning’s Georgians against Ward’s Third Corps brigade. After lunch we will walk Kershaw’s attack from Warfield Ridge to the Wheatfield–about ½ mile. We will then walk from Wheatfield Road along Caldwell’s Counter-attack where the 2nd Corps unit temporarily cleared the Wheatfield and aligned woods of Confederates. We will then return to the hotel. Lunch is included. Dinner will be on your own.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Again we will leave at 8:15, going to General Barksdale’s stepping off point where we will walk his attack which collapsed Sickles’ line and created a crisis for the Union army. We will visit the Trostle Farm before going over to the Codori farm next to the Emmitsburg Road where we will walk the assault of Anderson’s units led by Wright and Perry which crested Cemetery Ridge. This is often overlooked in the larger interpretation of the charge by Pickett and Pettigrew the next day. After lunch we will head to Culp’s Hill starting at the tower to walk the Union works and intersperse the fighting initiated by Ewell’s Second Corps on the Union right. Time permitting we will conclude at East Cemetery Hill to discuss the second element of Ewell’s assault. We will then return to the hotel with the program now completed. Lunch included with the program dismissing before dinner. Thank you for coming.

About the Faculty:

Scott Hartwig is a highly respected historian who recently retired from his position as lead historian for the National Park Service at Gettysburg NMP. In his years at the park he has overseen interpretation and had years of interaction with the grounds and artifacts in the park’s substantial collection. He is also the noted historian of the wonderful and exceptionally readable scholarly study of the 1862 Maryland Campaign. His book To Antietam Creek, The Maryland Campaign of 1862 is part 1 of a two book series that is bound to become the standard source for the pivotal 1862 campaign. He lives where he worked in Gettysburg. This is his home turf.

Hotel Information

This program will be based in Gettysburg. The hotel will be posted on this site. The headquarters hotel room block will likely be in the $150 a night range cheaper hotels may be had in Hanover, Emmitsburg and Chambersburg.

Transportation

The servicing airport is Baltimore Washington International (BWI) more than an hour east of Gettysburg. The program is also easily accessible by automobile.

Key Publications and Recommended Reading

You will be provided with a reading book and maps upon arrival. We recommend the following books to enhance your preparation for this tour. Amazon.com has a program to support non profits IF YOU SIGN UP to support Blue and Gray Education Society (EIN 54-1720582) at AmazonSmile. When you sign up there rather than the normal Amazon site one half of one percent of your purchase price is provided to BGES as a donation from Amazon. This will apply not only on this purchase but others you may make at other times.

BGES is selling the two Bearss books.

  • Edwin C. Bearss and J. Parker Hills: Receding Tide: Vicksburg and Gettysburg, The Campaigns that Changed the Civil War $30 (price inclusive of shipping)
  • Edwin C. Bearss: Fields of Honor $22 (Enjoy Ed Bearss narrative of Gettysburg)
  • Edwin B. Coddington, The Gettysburg Campaign, A Study in Command
  • David S. Hartwig, To Antietam Creek, The Maryland Campaign of 1862

Registration

Registration includes two lunches, battlefield maps, the academic program, support of a professional historian, tour director and transportation appropriate to the registration. We will also provide snacks, bottled water and a limited selection of sodas.

Register for this program online using a secure Paypal server
Registration Type

Register by mail, or fax

Download a printable itinerary and registration form.

Questions