Impressed with the enormous Visitors center. The orientation theater provided a :20 introduction before the fabulous. The Cyclorama was very impressive, a massive 360 degree oil-on-canvas paintings with cannons, grasses, fences and even life-sized figures. We walked around a central platform, literally in the center of a three-dimensional Civil War scene. The museum contained thousands of artifacts from before, during and after the Civil War.
We joined free tour guides on the Battlefield, Cemetery and Cemetery Ridge. We followed a map and drove around the hundreds of acres of property climbing the Pennsylvania Memorial,and visiting man towers, Knolls, monuments and graves.
Gettysburg, is considered to be one of the greatest and bloodiest battles of the civil war that lasted July 1-3 in 1863, the war that pitted brother against brother, neighbor against neighbor.
During the early morning on July 1 in 1863 is when the Union and the Confederate army collided. The battle escalates through the day with Confederates lead by A.P. Hill and Ewell and Union lead by Reynolds, Doubleday and Howard, but ends up battling through the town of Gettysburg, and back to Cemetery and Culp’s Hills.
July 2 both armies arrive on a field where Confederates troops lead by Longstreet, A.P.Hill and Ewell try to repel them so fighting rages on at Little Round Top, Wheatfield, Devil's Den, and Peach Orchard where the Union lead by Sickles, Hancock, Newton, Howard, and Slocum are dug in. Confederates lead by Longstreet almost succeeds in unlogged them, but with reinforcements arrive to repel the attack lead by Union Sedgwick who arrives just in time. Yet, the Confederate lead by Ewell are able to capture part of Culp’s Hill.
By July 3, Confederate General Lee tried to turn the tide of the battle by using his artillery that bombards the Union forces for over two hours and then he sends in 12,000 infantry called “Picket’s Charge” to break the Union lines on Cemetery Ridge. Confederate Ewell tries to take the rest of Culp’s Hill. Yet, the Confederate experiencing way too many losses and General Lee withdraws his troops to Virginia.
During this 3-day battle, 51,000 Union and Confederate Troops lay dead, wounded, dying, or missing.
The first place stop should be the visitor center. My sister was amazed at the building because she was here not too long ago. A beautiful 2008 building that house a café, ranger station, theatre, huge gift shop, and some wonderful exhibits you can see Free.
We had to decide if we had to time to see the museum or the whole park, so sadly we skipped the film and Cyclorama and wished I hadn’t, but there is always the future. Yet, there were some wonderful exhibits that surround the theatre that were educational and fascinating. So make sure to explore.
You have to venture over to the huge mural “Now we are engaged in a great civil war…” because at the bottom shows some very interesting facts of how each state was either Union or Confederate.
Walk-Up Price (Please check the web site for there are other prices and packages depending on what you are schedule for or seeing.
• Adult (ages 19+): $10.50
• Seniors (65+) and Military Personnel: $9.50
• AAA Discount: $9.50
• Youth (ages 6-18): $6.50
Children (ages 5 and under): FREE
A visit to the National Militairy Park should begin at the visitor center. Here you can find all the info you need to visit the battlefield. It is also the place where the selfguided autotour starts. Maps are availlable in the visitor center.
Before your tour check out the electric map. It costs 3 dollar, but it will give you a good explanation of the events during the three battle around Gettysburg. It will make the tour much more understandable. The show is every 30 minutes.
Open daily from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM