South Mountain by Rick Reeve

South Mountain by Rick Reeve
South Mountain by Rick Reeve depicting the wounding of General Garland

Monday, September 17, 2012

Antietam 150th Anniversary

This past weekend, I was fortunate to take part in the commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Antietam (or Sharpsburg). On Saturday I took part in living history events portraying the 4th Virginia infantry of the famed  Stonewall Brigade. The brigade number 250 muskets (men in the battle line) and would suffered 88 killed, wounded, and missing. By the end of the battle, the brigade was under the command of a Major and was the size of a large company.

Photo at Stonewall Brigade marker

Preparing for weapons inspection (photo on Antietam Ranger Mannie Gentile's blog)

Confederate Camp near Visitor Center

Living Historians portraying the 6th Wisconsin marching in line of battle to demonstration area

On Sunday, Sept. 16th and today, the 17th, I took part in guide and interpretation duties as a volunteer and Antietam Guide trainee in the North Woods and Cornfield area.
Union Artillery, North Woods area

Nicodemus Heights, position of Confederate Horse Artillery during early morning fighting.

Union troops marching towards demonstration area

6th Wisconsin living historians marching into North Woods. 

Artillery fire

Union encampment on actual ground of Union bivouac 150 years ago

Head Antietam Guide and volunteer, Jim Rosebrock giving talk on Battery B, 4th US

Smoke from North Woods artillery fire

Confederate living historians maneuvering demonsration

Confederate battery on actual Confederate artillery  position

September 17th:
East Woods Area, Union troops would advance and push Confederates out of the woods in early morning fighting.

View of Bloody Cornfield from North Woods

View from  Cornfield towards North Woods

View of Cornfield near East Woods. In this 24 acre cornfield and surrounding area, over 8,000 men would be casualties.

Living Historians, honoring the 1st Texas near the Cornfield

Union officer photo-op at Cornfield

Artillery position of Battery B, 4th US Artillery along Hagerstown Turnpike, D.R. Miller Barn in background

It was a truly humbling experience to be on the field 150 years to the day that a many fathers and sons, both North and South, gave everything for what they believed. Working at both the North Woods and Cornfields tour stops, it was experience meeting the grand-daughter of a Confederate veteran and several others who had made the long trip to follow in the ancestors steps. Several the come to mind were: one gentleman said that a boy scout from his hometown had constructed a memorial for a soldier from the 9th PA Reserves who earned the Medal of Honor in the Cornfield for the capture of two regimental flags from the 1st Texas, one who had come to trace the footsteps and see, for the first time, where his ancestor from the 2nd Wisconsin fought, and another who was following his great-great grandfather in the 80th New York to each of the battlefields on which he fought. It was an incredible experience and I would like to thank the National Park Service for all the hard work put into putting on such a great event and also for preserving such a pristine and beautiful battlefield.


  1. Great post, and wonderful pictures! I was there over the weekend and had a fantastic time. My great-great-great-grandfather fought for the 125th PA Infantry, so it was interesting seeing where he fought and seeing the 125th's monument.

  2. Great post Tim. Lots of unforgettable memories that weekend. Thanks for all you did to make it special for all the visitors.
    Warm Regards
    Jim Rosebrock

  3. Thanks to the both of you for the kind words. It really was a special experience.