Went to the park with my older brother - who lives in the area - and we spent most of the day there. We did the film and Cyclorama (a wraparound massive painting depicting the final engagement of the three-day battle), walked about the Visitor Center - which had some special activities going on due to the anniversary of the battle - before driving out by car to the key points of the battlefield. It is spread out at such distances that going by car is the quickest way to see it all (although biking it or riding Segways are options: hiking is for masochists).
What follows is a pictorial travelogue depicting the horrors of letting your older brother try to parallel park everywhere. Oh, and the national park.
|Arriving at the Visitor Center|
|Hanging Out With my Brother From Another Statue, the inventor of the chokeslam,|
the Sage of Springfield, the Ayatollah of RockanRolla, Abraham Lincoln!
|With my real-life brother Eric, checking out the historic firearms used in the war, outside the film|
and Cyclorama studios.
|Scenes from the Cyclorama|
|Signage from the Cyclorama|
|In the back porch of the Visitor Center, they are drilling the new recruits.|
|All along the Auto Tour - the road path circling across all the key parts of the battlefield -|
there are memorials to every brigade, every division, every Corps, every state.
|General Reynolds memorial|
|The Macpherson farm, along the first part of the tour, where the fighting began.|
|The memorial for the Eternal Light Peace... which was surrounded by cannons and|
signs of battle. Irony? Sad? Human, I suppose...
|Some of the artillery positions along Seminary Ridge, where the Confederate Army|
lined themselves during the Second and Third days of the battle.
|The stone wall of Seminary Ridge.|
|North Carolina's memorial|
|Part of the North Carolina memorial overlooking the open field between the two armies.|
|I am pointing at the horizon. Over there is the Union position. Across this field Lee will order|
two massive divisions to charge on the Third Day in an all-out attack. Just look at how open that field is,
how far that is to march...
|General Robert E Lee's memorial.|
|The Florida memorial|
|General Longstreet's memorial, which is kinda in a hidden spot and not as|
|General - and President - Eisenhower's farm|
|The Georgia Memorial|
|For mom: the Alabama Memorial|
|The stone wall used by the 20th Maine to hold the line.|
|Along Little Round Top, overlooking Devil's Den, where some of the bloodiest fighting took place.|
|Re-enactors, I think, walking along the memorials atop Little Round Top.|
The actual re-enacting is going to take place on Saturday (on the 4th),
which I figure will have a big turnout (weather permitting).
|The Copse of Trees|
Sickles was really an idiot. Buford would have done better.
So I've made my pilgrimage to the battlefield. As it goes, my vacation is going well, hope to visit Fort McHenry and to stick around for the 4th of July celebration in DC.