Gettysburg National Park Commission
Gettysburg, Pa. July 1, 1908
Sir : We have the honor to transmit the annual report for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1908.
The force of engineers has been reduced by the resignation of Mr. S. Augustine Hammond, assistant engineer. His services from July, 1904, to the date of his resignation were valuable and efficient.
In 1895 the legislature of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania ceded certain parts of the public roads on the battlefield to the United States, and in 1899 the Commission piked a short piece of the Wheatfield road and in 1904-5 a portion of the Taneytown road. In 1906, by contract No. 86, M. & T. E. Farrell graded and piked parts of the following public roads connecting the avenues and lines of battle: The Mummasburg, Carlisle, Hagerstown, and Newville roads, and a short piece of the Emmitsburg and Wheatfield roads fronting the Peach orchard. When the United States took control of the battlefield the following conditions were prevalent and general: Old earth roads, with steep grades in many places, made the lines of battle of the Union Army, in a measure, accessible to visitors, in carriages; there was no way to reach the Confederate positions except on foot. A few of the Union batteries were represented by guns of a kind never used in the battle and mounted upon impossible gun carriages. The Memorial Association's lands and roads were lined with barbed-wire fencing, and very little attention had been given to keeping the field in a respectable appearance. All this has been changed by the Commission. The old road lines have been altered and corrected so that they parallel the lines of battles; they have been graded, piked, drained, and guttered. The Confederate positions have had similar avenues laid out and piked along the lines of battle, and all the positions of batteries of both armies have been marked by guns of the same kind used in the battle, mounted upon iron gun carriages modeled in form after the wooden carriages used in the battle. Almost all the barbed-wire fencing erected by the Memorial Association and the Quartermaster's Department, U.S. Army, has been removed and more substantial fencing substituted, viz, with steel rails and locust posts along avenues and chestnut posts and rail fencing on boundary lines and for division fences. Large tracts of land have been purchased where it was necessary to preserve woodland and also to open ground that had been occupied by lines of battle or had been fought over. These grounds have been put in complete order as fast as acquired and as the work could be done by clearing out rubbish in forests, newly fencing lands, and arranging for the proper cultivation of the land. Miles of stone walls in dilapidated condition have been rebuilt, restoring to the battlefield many miles of defenses used in the battle.
We have stated that portions of five public roads on the battlefield connecting the avenues have been piked and completed. On September 9, 1907, a contract was made with M. & T. E. Farrell to grade and pike a portion of three additional public roads connecting avenues, viz: The Harrisburg road from the borough line of Gettysburg to Rock Creek bridge, 2,872 feet, 18 feet wide; the Emmitsburg road from the borough line to the peach orchard, 8,263 feet, 18 feet wide, and the Wheatfield road from Sedgwick avenue to Sickles avenue, 3,400 feet, 18 feet wide. This contract includes the draining and one large culvert over Plum Run. The total length piking on the three roads when completed will be 14,535 feet.
The work on these public roads was begun about April 1, and at this date the work on the Harrisburg road has been completed and the grading on the Emmitsburg road is well under way. This grading and piking on the public roads so far as they have been completed is of material advantage to the system of avenues on the battlefield, because the part of the road piked connect with the avenues and facilitates traveling over the battlefield. Further extension of this work is necessary and is contemplated, contributing to the same end. When it is completed all parts of these fields, the infantry and the two cavalry fields, will be connected by good and direct roads that can be traveled at all seasons of the year.
The Commission in carrying forward this great work has kept in view the purpose of preserving the features of the battlefield as they were during the battle and also rendering all parts of it accessible, particularly to military people and others making a study of the positions and movements of the troops; to that end they have been careful not to have deep cuts and high embankments made in the construction of a road or avenue, but rather to preserve the grade by curving the lines to conform more nearly to the contours of the ground.
MONUMENTS AND MARKERS.
An unusually large number of monuments and markers have been erected during the year.
UNITED STATES REGULAR MONUMENTS.
In the report for the year 1907 a lengthy statement relating to the work of erecting monuments to the United States Regular Army on this field was made. At the close of the year very little work had been done beyond selecting the sites for said monuments and beginning work on the foundations for the large monument located on Hancock avenue, south of the high-water mark. This foundation was completed July 8, 1907, and the foundations for the forty-two small monuments were staked out at the positions of the various commands at different times during the summer and autumn. These foundations were built before the close of the year 1907 and the small monuments set up, the tablets fastened, and the work completed May 15, 1908. At this date the large United States Regular monument above referred to has been completed except four large bronze tablets.
The contracts for these monuments were awarded to the Van Amringe Granite Company, of Boston, Mass., February 11, 1907, and February 15, 1907. Numerous samples of granite were submitted to the Commission, and for the large monument Mount Airy, N. C., granite was selected after much deliberation and a visit by the Commission to the quarry in order to examine into the facilities of the company to get out the stone and the quality of the work done by them. They found the granite of excellent quality, light in color and uniform in shade, and that it could be furnished in large blocks.
The forty-two small monuments are composed of Jonesboro granite, 24 by 50 inches and 7 feet high, set upon concrete foundations, and upon each is fastened a descriptive bronze tablet and the coat of arms of the United States. The drawings of these monuments are shown in accompanying blueprints, and photographs of them are with the photographic illustrations with this report.*
The United States regular monuments that were provided for under the acts of Congress dated February 18, 1903, and March 3, 1905, are located as follows:
One large monument to all the commands on Hancock avenue.
To the artillery. -- Wilkinson's Battery G, Fourth United States, Barlow's Knoll: Calef's Battery A, Second United States, Chambersburg pike: Stewart's Battery B, Fourth United States, Baltimore pike; Eakin's Battery H, First United States, National Cemetery; Butler's Battery G, Second United States, Ziegler's grove; Turnbull's Batteries F and K, Third United States, Baltimore pike; Turnbull's Batteries F and K, Third United States (second position), Meade avenue; Cushing's Battery A, Fourth United States, Hancock avenue; Woodruff's Battery I, First United States, Hancock avenue; Martin's Battery F, Fifth United States, Ziegler's Grove, Rugg's Battery F, Fourth United States, Baltimore pike; Weir's Battery C, Fifth United States, Hancock avenue; Heaton's Batteries B and L, Second United States, granite schoolhouse; Heaton's Batteries B and L, Second United States (second position), Pleasanton avenue; Thomas's Battery C, Fourth United States, Hancock avenue; Seeley's Battery K, Fourth United States, Emmitsburg road; Kinzie's Battery K, Fifth United States, Culp's Hill; Fuller's Battery C, Third United States, west end granite schoolhouse road; Watson's Battery I, Fifth United States, north of United States avenue; Williston's Battery D, Second United States, Taneytown road; Hazlett's Battery D, Fifth United States, Little Round Top; Elder's Battery E, Fourth United States, Bushman's woods; Graham's Battery K, First United States, south cavalry field; Randol's Batteries E and G, First United States, east cavalry field: Chester's Batteries E and G, First United States, east cavalry field; Pennington's Battery M, Second United States, east cavalry field; Bancroft's Battery G, Fourth United States, National Cemetery.
Infantry.--Second Regiment, Ayres avenue, southeast of wheatfield, Seventh Regiment, Ayres avenue, southeast of wheatfield; Tenth Regiment, Ayres avenue, southeast of wheatfield; Eleventh Regiment, Ayres avenue, southeast of wheatfield; Seventeenth Regiment, Ayres avenue, southeast of wheatfield; Third Regiment, Ayres avenue, southeast of wheatfield; Fourth Regiment, Ayres avenue, southeast of wheatfield; Sixth Regiment, Ayres avenue, southeast of wheatfield; Twelfth Regiment, Ayres avenue, southeast of wheatfield; Fourteenth Regiment, Ayres avenue, southeast of wheatfield; Eighth Regiment, Meade avenue.
Cavalry.--Fifth Regiment, Ridge road; Sixth Regiment, south cavalry field; First Regiment, south cavalry field; Second Regiment, south cavalry field.
In the last report reference was made to the fact that a bronze statue to Bvt. Maj. Gen. George S. Greene had been erected on the summit of Culps Hill in November, 1906, but that it had not been dedicated. It was dedicated with appropriate ceremonies on September 27, 1907. The occasion brought together a very large and distinguished number of persons from the State of New York and elsewhere, among whom were Governor Charles E. Hughes, Maj. Gen. D. E. Sickles, Maj. Gen. F. D. Grant, Brig. Gen. A. G. McCook, Maj. Gen. Francis V. Greene, Maj. Gen. A. S. Webb, and many others. A troop of United States cavalry, and Battery E, Third United States Field Artillery, under command of Maj. J. T. Dickman, U. S. Army, came from Fort Myer, Va., and took part in the dedication. Four hundred veterans of Greene's Brigade attended and participated in the unveiling ceremonies.
THIRD CORPS MARKER.
On September 25, 1907, a granite marker was set up to the Third Corps in the angle of the peach orchard, to the north, and a bronze tablet describing movement of the corps placed upon it. Two division markers of this corps have since been erected on the line of the corps marker and each about 20 feet distant from it on the right and left; the fences have been renewed and set back behind the markers and a line of shells and chains have been erected at the sides of the angle along the Wheatfield road and the Emmitsburg road. Six gun carriages have been mounted with guns and set up at the three battery monuments near these markers, viz, Hampton's and Thompson's Pennsylvania and Ame's New York Light Artillery.
MARKERS FOR ORGANIZATION OF ARMIES.
About June 1, 1908, two large granite markers were set up with bronze tablets giving the organization of the Army of the Potomac and the Army of Northern Virginia. Shields in bronze will be mounted on the faces of the markers above the tablets.
Designs under the direction of the Commission were prepared for nineteen bronze itinerary tablets to be set upon large granite posts, deeply cemented in the ground, to replace iron itinerary tablets that have been in position for several years. All the posts are in and the nine tablets describing the movements of the different commands of the Union Army have been mounted. Eight Confederate itinerary tablets have been mounted and the remaining two are in process of casting.
CONFEDERATE AND UNITED STATES ARTILLERY TABLETS.
Iron tablets to the following brigades of Confederate infantry have been placed on the Confederate lines: Davis's on Reynolds avenue, north of Western Maryland Railroad; Archer's on Meredith avenue in Reynolds woods; Robertson's opposite Smith's Battery on Sickles avenue; Anderson's, south crossing of electric railroad, Brooke avenue, Semmes's opposite Sixty-fourth New York monument, Brooke avenue; Kershaw's on top of north grade, Brooke avenue; Wofford's opposite center of peach orchard, Emmitsburg road.
The posts have been set up for the following additional Confederate brigade and United States artillery tablets, which are in process of casting: Law's on Warren avenue, near east end; Benning's on Sickles avenue, west of Devils Den; Barksdale's on Emmitsburg road opposite peach orchard; Wilcox's on Emmitsburg road opposite Seeley's Battery; Perry's on Emmitsburg road, north of First Massachusetts monument; Wright's on Emmitsburg road, Codori orchard; Ames's Battery with two Napoleon guns; Thompson's Battery with two 3-inch rifles, Hampton's Battery with two 3-inch rifles; Chester's United States battery on cavalry field with two Napoleons; Heaton's United States battery on Pleasanton avenue, two 3-inch rifles; Turnbull's United States battery on Meade avenue, two Napoleons; Fuller's United States battery on end of Schoolhouse road.
NUMBER OF GUNS.
We have had a recount of all the guns mounted on the battlefield, including the cavalry fields, and have found the total number to be 357.
The legislature of the State of Alabama passed an act, which was approved by the governor August 16, 1907, appropriating $100,000 to be distributed among the four national parks, Gettysburg, Chattanooga, Shiloh, and Vicksburg, to be expended by a monumental committee appointed by the governor for the purpose of erecting suitable monuments to her soldiers who fell on these fields.
The legislature of the State of Virginia passed an act approved March 9, 1908, appropriating $10,000 to "commemorate the services of the Virginia troops in the battle" and authorized the appointment of a committee of five to select a location, design, and inscriptions for said monument. The committee is empowered to use the whole or any part of the said $10,000 in securing the design and preparing the location for the monument, and are to report to the general assembly, 1909, and submit a design of a memorial which shall not exceed the aggregate $50,000.
John P. Nicholson, Chairman,
C. A. Richardson,
L. L. Lomax,
The SECRETARY OF WAR.