Thursday, April 14, 2011


Day Two: We got up early and made it to the Battlefield Museum by opening, at 8:00 a.m.

We booked a two-hour car tour with a registered battlefield guide, and I cannot recommend this strongly enough. Our guide was awesome (his name was David, can't remember his last name) and the tour was a bargain at $55 (the group bus tour actually would have cost us more and covered less ground). Plus we had someone to take photos of the three of us. :)

According to Wikipedia, there were, as of 2008, "1,320 monuments, 410 cannon, 148 historic buildings and 41 miles of avenues, roads and lanes." We'd have been lost without a guide.

I've already forgotten which monuments are which. As you can see, it was a gorgeous day.

Robbie almost finished reading The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara before our tour, and recognized many of the key figures in the battle, including General Longstreet, in the statue here.

I was reading it too, and kept looking for the "high ground" that was mentioned repeatedly. I guess when you're used to the Rocky Mountains, hills like this don't seem very high. This is the view from Little Round Top, with our guide, David. He told us that he recommended The Killer Angels as a first introduction to the Battle at Gettysburg, so I was glad we'd already read it. It was also nice that he was able to tell us where the novel strayed from historical fact.

Robbie at the top of a monument on Little Round Top.

I think we're in front of a statue of John Buford, the calvary officer who held the high ground until infantry could arrive.

After our awesome tour, we returned to the museum.

The museum was well organized and in-depth. There were lots of displays, historical artifacts, short films, touchscreen computers, etc. We also watched the 20 minute film, narrated by Morgan Freeman.

Here's Robbie looking at a very small part of the restored Cyclorama (he noticed that this part is seen on the cover of The Killer Angels).

Although I pictured the battlefield as being nothing more than open pasture, the town, which looked like this at the time, was occupied and used as well.

After the museum we went to the cemetery, where Lincoln gave his famous Gettysburg Address.

We also visited the Pennsylvania Monument, which is the largest in the park. Robbie and I are the small specks up on top.

Although our whole week was amazing, we all agree that Gettysburg was a highlight. I had been been advocating a day-trip to Williamsburg instead, but I'm so glad we went with Rob's recommendation to visit Gettysburg.

1 comment:

Rob said...

Our guide was Dave Donally or Donahough.