Evening “Walks Through History

Series – 2017

2017 will mark the sixth year of  Licensed Battlefield Guide-led  “Walks Through History.”  Each Tuesday evening, Guides will  lead an evening walk dedicated to a specific topic.  These are ideal for those who desire a more in-depth look at one aspect of the Battle of Gettysburg, or for those simply looking for something to do on a beautiful, and at times not-so-beautiful, summer evening.  Each session is offered for a fee of $30, payable to the Association of Licensed Battlefield Guides.  Purchase six programs and receive a seventh for free. Contact Treasurer Jim Cooke if you wish to take advantage of this option.

When:        Tuesday Evenings throughout the Summer of 2017

Dates:        June 6, 13, 20, 27, July 4, 11, 18, 25, August 1, 8, 15, 22, and 29.

Time:          All programs will run from 5:30 PM until approximately 8:30 PM

Where:       To be provided prior to the scheduled date in joining instructions.

Cost:          $30 per session.  (Buy 6 – get one free); Contact ALBG Treasurer.

June 6, 2017 Evening Walk   “Johnson’s Division vs Greene’s Brigade on Culp’s Hill”   LBG Andy Ward

Many believe that the Confederate forces came close to winning the battle of Gettysburg on Culp’s hill on the evening of July 2nd. We will look at the remarkable set of circumstances that led to the attacks and then we will examine the evening action on Culp’s Hill, focusing on the attacking troops of Johnson’s division and the defending troops from Greene’s brigade. The tour will meet at Benner’s Hill where we will discuss the planning of the attacks and examine the starting point. We will then car pool to the summit of Culp’s Hill and walk Greene’s line discussing the action.


June 13, 2017 Evening Walk        “Big Round Top – Its Tactical Significance”     LBG Richard Rigney

This tour will cover the tactical importance of Big Round Top, for both the Union and Confederate Armies on July 2nd, and the Union occupation of the hill on July 3rd. This will be a fairly strenuous walking tour, we will circle the entire hill and then we will walk to the summit. Walking distance for the tour will be about two miles. The tour will start at the Alabama Monument on South Confederate Avenue.


June 20, 2017 Evening Walk      “Union Counterattacks South of the Copse, July 2nd”   LBG Jerry Hahn

Longstreet has unleashed his violent attacks against the Union left on July 2nd. Troops from the Union 2nd Corps are scrambling to meet the tidal wave of the Army of Northern Virginia and plug the gap in the middle of the Union’s Cemetery Ridge line. The valiant sacrifices of Col Norman J. Hall and BG William Harrow’s Brigades south of the Copse of Trees are often overshadowed by other assaults. We will meet near BG John Gibbon’s statue on Hancock Avenue and explore the fights with Wilcox’s Alabamians and Lang’s Floridians. Fairly easy hike over rolling and uneven fields.


June 27, 2017 Evening Walk   “The 40th NY Fight for the Slaughter Pen”   LBG Bill Trelease

This tour will cover the July 2nd action in and around the Slaughter Pen. We will focus on the experiences of the 40th New York, one of the most unusual regiments in the Army of Potomac. Nicknamed the “Mozart Regiment,” the 40th NY was originally composed of men from New York, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts and, by the time it came to Gettysburg, had also absorbed veterans from 5 other New York regiments. Yet this “motley” collection of men will be called upon to make a stand that was so desperate one senior Union officer would later call it “the most brilliant affair of the day.” We will meet in the Devil’s Den parking lot.


July 4, 2017 Evening Walk     “Peach Orchard – A Six-Corner Tour”     LBG Ralph Siegel and LBG Mike Vallone

The Peach Orchard at Gettysburg is remembered for some of the heaviest infantry and artillery fighting of the American Civil War. We will cover this critical terrain with an easy walk to the “six” corners – the four corners of the orchard plus quick jaunts south to the Rose Farm Lane and north to the Sherfy Farm. We will absorb the drama and emotion of this intense part of the battle, and discuss the larger strategic issues that make the Peach Orchard the pivotal point of the entire battle. Please park along Sickles Avenue at NPS Tour Stop 10 and walk up to the Peach Orchard. Try to leave Birney Avenue open so the parked cars do not interfere with our tour. Do not park on Wheatfield Road. It is unsafe and illegal.


July 11, 2017  Evening Walk   “Fire Zouaves at Gettysburg”     LBG Chuck Burkell

During the Battle of Gettysburg, there were a number of “Fire Zouave” Regiments who served at Gettysburg. Zouave Regiments followed rich, cultural traditions that were established years earlier in Europe and Africa, and then carried forward and/or adapted to practices by men and women who would serve within the American Civil War and at Gettysburg. The major cities of the North and their fire services including New York, Boston, and Philadelphia had a profound impact on these Regiments of Zouave soldiers. A number of these Regiments were further distinguished as “Fire Zouaves” providing a second distinct identity. This presentation will explore the cultural origins and traditions of Zouaves; their respective fire service histories, and their actions and outcomes during the Battle of Gettysburg. We will meet at the Irish Brigade Monument, travel to the Peach Orchard, Emmitsburg Road, and then the Angle.


July 18, 2017 Evening Walk   “Fight for the Harmon Farm”  LBG Chris Army

This tour will examine the actions of the Confederate attacks over the property known as the Harmon Farm at the time of the battle. During the late morning and mid-afternoon of July 1st, 1863, the Harmon farm saw heavy skirmish action leading up to the late afternoon Confederate divisional attacks as the Union defenders sought to hold the ground west of Gettysburg. We will walk the ground and discuss these actions and the role the farm had in Gettysburg history before, during and after the battle. Please park and meet at the far left side of the Gettysburg Day Spa parking lot, by the trees and fence.


July 25, 2017 Evening Walk   “The Ridge With No Name”  LBG Dave Donahue

A ridge line that was not marked on 1863 maps dominated the planning and execution of the Confederate offense and Union defense on the second and third day of the battle of Gettysburg. This ridge line extends from the Codori farm south along the Emmitsburg Road to the Peach Orchard. This tour is a terrain analysis that will emphasize how the presence of that ridge dominated the actions of Robert E. Lee, James Longstreet, Lafayette McLaws, George Meade, Henry Hunt, Dan Sickles and other Union and Confederate leaders on July 2nd and 3rd, 1863. Please meet at the North Carolina Memorial and be prepared to drive or car pool to the Peach Orchard. The tour includes some walking over difficult terrain and periods of standing.


August 1, 2017 Evening Walk     “140 Places Every Guide Should Know”    LBG Fred Hawthorne

This evening walk will relate the “history” behind this list which has grown to mythical proportions in the years since it was first developed.  This evening’s walk will concentrate on those sites between United States Avenue and East Cemetery Hill.  Park in the new National Cemetery Parking lot and meet at the Pennsylvania Memorial.  We will walk up to East Cemetery Hill along a gentle grade and end near the Hancock Equestrian.  The parking lot will be a good mid-way point.


August 8, 2017 Evening Walk       “Rodes’ Division”    LBG Mary Turk-Meena

Robert Rodes and his Division of Ewell’s Corps arrived at Gettysburg with a reputation for solid fighting during the Peninsula Campaign and Antietam (Sharpsburg) in 1862 and having led Stonewall Jackson’s flank attack at Chancellorsville. What happened at Gettysburg? During this walk we will explore the actions and criticisms of Rodes and his Division at Gettysburg, from the preemptive and uncoordinated attack on the afternoon of July 1st to the failure to support Early’s attack on Cemetery Hill on July 2nd. Our walk will begin at the Eternal Peace Light Memorial on Oak Hill.


August 15, 2017 Evening Walk      “26th NC Infantry at Gettysburg”   LBG Larry Korczyk

On the afternoon of 1 July 1863, the 26th North Carolina Infantry of General J.J. Pettigrew’s Brigade engaged the Union’s First Corps “Iron Brigade” in the Herbst Woods. Over the course of approximately ½ hour, the 26th NC lost 588 of 800 men engaged while inflicting horrendous casualties on their Iron Brigade antagonist, the 24th Michigan. Walk in the footsteps of the 26th NC as the unit “covered itself in glory” and helped shatter the Union line on McPherson’s Ridge. The tour covers approx. ½ mile of ground gently uphill from Willoughby’s Run through Herbst Woods. The tour starts on Meredith Avenue by the Archer Brigade tablet.


August 22, 2017 Evening Walk     “McGilvery’s Gun-Line”     LBG Britt Isenberg

On both July 2nd and 3rd, Lieutenant Colonel Freeman McGilvery’s line of artillery on Cemetery Ridge played a crucial role in repelling massive attacks by the Army of Northern Virginia. Although McGilvery’s performance at Gettysburg usually receives honorable mention, in most cases that praise amounts to a passing glance. This tour will explore not only the man, but also analyze his performance at Gettysburg in some detail. Along the way, we will meet the men that fought under him and play witness to the actions in which they participated on the second and third days of the battle. We will meet at the Third Corps Headquarters marker across from the Trostle barn and finish on Hancock Avenue near the New York Auxiliary Monument (bring your walking shoes!).


August 29, 2017 Evening Walk       “Trains, Trolleys, and Parks Within the Park”   LBG Phil Lechak

We will conclude the 2017 WALKS not by studying a particular fighting unit nor by examining the battle action on a specific portion of the Battlefield, but rather by looking “Off The Beaten Path.” In the years following the battle, visitors flocked to these grounds by many means of conveyance. The Gettysburg & Harrisburg Railroad and the Gettysburg Electric Railroad Company, also known as the Trolley, were two of those means and they have their own stories. During this same era, there were three “parks” within the Park: Round Top Park, Tipton Park, and the Wible/Wheatfield park. This will be an all walking tour of moderate difficulty: some paths, some roads, and some ‘across the ground’. We will visit the sites of the three parks and traverse a portion of the historic Trolley Right Of Way. We will meet at the parking area at the intersection of Sykes Avenue and Wheatfield Road (Little Round Top exit ramp). Please wear comfortable walking shoes, but realize that portions of the walk may be on very muddy ground.