SAVE THE DATE
GETTYSBURG CONSERVATION DAY
SATURDAY, APRIL 18, 2020
Our conservation work at Gettysburg NMP began in 1991 under the leadership of Mike Snyder who worked with Scott Hartwig to plan our first “Brush Cutting” venture. It wasn’t until 1995 that the Park formally initiated a preservation and conservation program. On November 1, 1995 then, Superintendent John Latschar wrote the following to our Round Table:
“This letter is a long overdue thank you for the hard work and generosity of the Civil War Round Table of Eastern Pennsylvania in clearing trees and brush at Stewart’s Battery at Gettysburg National Military Park.
The work of volunteer groups like yours is extremely vital to the future of the Gettysburg battlefield. Partly due to your inspirations we are launching a new program on November 18 to ask groups to formally adopt regimental or brigade positions on the battlefield, and to help us with the care and restoration of monuments and the historic surroundings.
The dedication and work of your Roundtable is such an excellent example of group volunteer efforts that we are using it as a success story in our promotional materials. I know we can count on your continued support, and I hope you will consider formally adopting one or more of the positions at Gettysburg National Military Park that you have helped us with so much in the past.”
When the “Adopt a Position” was formally announced later that month we were listed as one of two success stories.” The Civil War Roundtable of Eastern Pennsylvania has donated thousands of hours of labor, clearing overgrown vegetation on the battlefield, including the Wheatfield and the Loop. Currently they are removing the dense, non-historic vegetation in front of the tablet to Battery B, 4th United States Artillery, which played a crucial role in the afternoon fighting on July 1, 1863.”
While we never adopted one place, we did become a “Fire Brigade” and worked with Park officials to labor at different sites all over the battlefield where we were needed most. That work continues today. Over the past number of years, we have partnered with Bob McHugh’s High School students, Jim Duffy’s brother John’s Boy Scout Troop 89, Dave Hunsicker’s Boy Scout Troop 786, members of the Whitehall Historical Society and friends and family of Round Table members to continue that work. Last year some 50 volunteers painted, cut brush or built fences at the Slyder Farm. Most of those volunteers weren’t even born in 1991.
We have a legacy of volunteerism to preserve and protect our historic sites. Be part of that legacy on April 18, 2020. Stay turned for further developments at next year’s site is yet to be determined.