These are significant numbers in the telling of American history. The 150th anniversary of the American Civil War is approaching one of its major milestones, the Battle of Gettysburg, which was fought over three days from July 1st – 3rd in 1863. Not only was it the bloodiest battle of the American Civil War with over 51,000 casualties, but also a major turning point. As a confident General Robert E. Lee marched the Confederate army north, they collided with the Union army led by Major General George G. Meade and suffered defeat, ending Lee’s invasion of the North and setting the Union army on a course towards victory.
The land on which the battle was fought is now a preserved National Military Park. Visitors will be arriving from all corners of the globe to commemorate the battle, remember the lives lost and immerse themselves in living history during the Gettysburg 150th Commemorative Event taking place June 28th – July 7th. Reenactments, tours and special exhibits are all on the lineup, including the opening of the Gettysburg Seminary Ridge Museum featuring 20,000 square feet of interactive exhibits. The Gettysburg National Civil War Reenactment taking place July 4th – 7th will showcase 9,000 participants in period costume, speakers, live music, Civil War weddings and an 1860’s fashion show.
Gettysburg Battlefield Bed & Breakfast Inn
Some Gettysburg bed and breakfasts, such as the Gettysburg Battlefield Bed & Breakfast Inn, are located near the battlefield land and are joining in on the commemoration. An 1809 Civil War farmhouse located on a breathtaking 30-acre nature preserve, this inn is honoring the war’s Sesquicentennial by offering guests a chance to spend a day-from-the-past with “special speakers,” including Mr. & Mrs. Robert E. Lee and Col. Hartranft, a medal of honor recipient who fought in Vicksburg. You may even encounter the inn’s resident Civil War ghost during your stay. Go ahead and kiss the parlor ghost shadow to see!
Located one block from historic Lincoln Square in downtown Gettysburg, The Gaslight Inn welcomes guests to choose from nine individually decorated guest rooms. Want to learn firsthand how a Civil War soldier lived? Mike Chambers will reenact a day in the life for you, showcasing uniforms, firearms and equipment. Gettysburg guide Stuart Dempsey will also be on hand during the week to take questions and provide answers on Civil War history. Spend the rest of the day relaxing on the one of the inn’s three wide porches overlooking gardens and the grounds.
Can’t make it to Gettysburg? There are plenty of Civil War getaways featuring battlefield tours, reenactments, 1860s-themed meals, and more coming up through 2015. Our “Civil War Sesquicentennial” Pinterest board offers a visual tour of historical sites, events and Civil War B&Bs.