While other Confederate offensives in Kentucky, Mississippi and
Western Virginia were being conducted on a thousand mile front, General Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia, with
about 40,000 men, marched across central and western Maryland. Lee’s invasion
was the bloodiest and most decisive of these incursions.
Following the Second Battle
of Manassas, Lee wrote CSA President Jefferson Davis, “The present seems to be
the most propitious time since the commencement of the war for the Confederate
Army to enter Maryland. If it is ever desired to give material aid to Maryland and throw off the oppression to which she
is now subject, this would seem to most favorable.”
The Confederates, weakened in men, arms and material (especially
uniforms & shoes) could afford to be idle. The 85,000 man Union Army, led
by General George B. McClellan, was less than 25 miles away. While camped in
Frederick, MD., a few days later, Lee decided on a bold move. Due to the 12,000
man Federal garrison at Harpers Ferry which posed a threat to his lines of supply, communication and retreat, Lee divided his army,
directing General “Stonewall” Jackson to launch an envelopment of Harpers
Ferry; General Daniel H. Hill to guard Turner’s Gap at Boonsboro; General James
Longstreet to lead the rest of the army to Hagerstown and prepare to enter Pennsylvania.
This all changed when Lee’s
Special Orders #191 fell into Union hands, likely found on the Monocacy
Battlefield. McClellan’s army gave chase and forced the Confederates into a holding action
Sept 14th, in the South Mountain
gaps: Turner’s, Fox’s and Crampton’s. Lee gathered his army at Sharpsburg and
decided to make a stand northeast to town. Sept 17, the armies met in the bloodiest one-day
battle in history. Casualties: USA = 12,400 CSA = 10,320 Ttl = 22,720
Sights we will visit: Turner’s, Fox’s, Crampton’s Gaps; Gathland State Park, Boonsboro,
Burkittsville, Keedysville, Kennedy Farm, Antietam Battlefield & Visitor Center,
Sharpsburg, Shepherdstown, Bottler’s Ford, and numerous other places.
Our guide Keven M. Walker, CEO of the
Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation & Antietam National Battlefields.
Keven served 11 years as a National Park Service Ranger, historian and guide.
At Antietam he was responsible for historic research, architectural history,
preservations and restoration. He is a member of the GOAL Academy Class – the National Park Service’s highly competitive leadership development
program. Ed Bearss, Chief Historian Emeritus of the NPS, stated: “Keven
Walker’s work has been exemplary, ranking him with the best historic
professionals I have known throughout my career.” Keven is a popular speaker
& tour guide for round tables and historical associations. Keven was the
Hershey Civil War Round Table’s September 17th speaker
To register, complete the form below and mail it to Sheldon Munn,
HCWRT 1483 Maplewood Drive, New Cumberland, PA 17070. Your $25 deposit will
hold your seat with the balance due by April 2, 2016. Cancellations received before April
2, 2016 will receive a
full refund. Cancellations after April 2, 2016 will receive a refund ONLY if the
open seat(s) have been filled by another person.
check payable to Harrisburg CWRT. Questions/information to Sheldon
Munn (717) 512-1989 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org