The first three days of July marked the 150th anniversary of the Civil War’s Battle of Gettysburg. This was a crucial battle in the outcome of the Civil War and it made every farm field and gardens in the town of Gettysburg a graveyard. The community did its part in honoring those that had fallen, keeping the ground a living memorial.
This, too, is where President Abraham Lincoln gave his Gettysburg Address. As a side note, he was not the keynote speaker at the dedication of the Gettysburg Battlefield Cemetery, but a gentleman by the name of Edward Everett had the honor. Everett was a noted orator of the time and Lincoln was asked to give a few appropriate remarks. Everett’s speech droned on for more than two hours and in just over two minutes Lincoln gave the Gettysburg Address, which is a speech so on point and full of impact, it lives on as one of the best orations in history.
If you are in Pennsylvania, this is a stop that you should make. You can visit the Gettysburg National Military Park a variety of ways. When you go to the visitor’s center, you can pick up an audio tour on CD that takes you through the park and tells you about the park. You may also want to do a bus tour where you can hop on and off the bus with a licensed guide. Or you can hire a guide that will go with you through the park. All are great options. If you’re tight on time, get the audio CD. You do need a full day to explore the visitor’s center and make your way through the entire park.