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Re: [TalkAntietam] Researchers study Piper Orchard

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  • G E Mayers
    Tom, Thanks. What a cool article! Yr. Obt. Svt. G E Gerry Mayers To Be A Virginian, either by birth, marriage, adoption, or even on one s mother s side, is
    Message 1 of 2 , Mar 29, 2007

      Thanks. What a cool article!

      Yr. Obt. Svt.
      G E "Gerry" Mayers

      To Be A Virginian, either by birth, marriage, adoption, or even on
      one's mother's side, is an introduction to any state in the Union, a
      passport to any foreign country, and a benediction from the Almighty
      God. --Anonymous
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: <RoteBaron@...>
      To: <TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Thursday, March 29, 2007 8:16 AM
      Subject: [TalkAntietam] Researchers study Piper Orchard

      > From today's HERALD-MAIL:
      > .
      > "Underground history: Researchers study Antietam's Piper Orchard"
      > SHARPSBURG - In a sun-dappled field, where molten lead once rained
      > from the sky, researchers armed with metal detectors listened for
      > evidence from America's bloodiest one-day battle.
      > Stephen R. Potter, who headed a team of National Park Service
      > archaeologists at Antietam National Battlefield, said Tuesday that
      > the group, which included a couple of amateur metal detectorists,
      > was studying an area of Piper Orchard where the 7th Maine fled from
      > a smaller Confederate force. "I don't think they would've been able
      > to drive the Maine guys back if they wouldn't have had the artillery
      > that they had, because what we're finding out here is pretty nasty
      > stuff," Potter said.
      > Now a cornfield, the area will be planted with apple trees to
      > recreate the appearance of the landscape Sept. 17, 1862, when more
      > than 20,000 Union and Confederate troops were killed, captured,
      > injured or went missing.
      > After the battle, which was the bloodiest one-day engagement in
      > American history, President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation
      > Proclamation. "I think about who was out here, that's what I think
      > about ... and the proximity to each other. This wasn't (soldiers)
      > shooting at each other at 250 yards. This was 70 yards. You could
      > see the faces of your enemy," archaeologist Bob Sonderman said. "It
      > must have been terrifying."
      > Karen Orrence, who like her colleagues works in the National Park
      > Service's capital region, said the team found more than 400
      > objects - mostly bullets and shrapnel - during their time on the
      > field Monday and Tuesday. For each hour in the field, Orrence said
      > the archaeologists likely will spend about three hours in the lab
      > analyzing the evidence they discovered.
      > Potter said the locations of shrapnel and spent and unfired bullets
      > helps the team determine troop movements, such as the retreat line
      > of the fleeing 7th Maine, which was ordered to attack a Confederate
      > unit near Piper Farm in the late afternoon.
      > Potter called the order a stupid move. With the Union troops in
      > their artillery sights, Confederate troops managed to drive back the
      > assault. One piece of shell that the group found was about half the
      > size of a human hand. Inside would have been lead shot about the
      > size of pingpong balls. Any piece could have taken off a limb,
      > Potter said.
      > "They're designed, to put it rather undiplomatically but
      > graphically, they're designed to turn people into hamburger meat.
      > It's a horrible, horrible thing," Potter said.
      > By looking at the marks on bullets, Potter determined whether
      > bullets found on the field had been fired. Deformities at the
      > bullets' tips indicate they hit something, though without any other
      > evidence, Potter said there's no way to know what they struck.
      > Orrence said the team found at least two buttons from soldiers'
      > uniforms in the field. "Millions and millions and millions of
      > rounds," were fired at Antietam, Potter said.
      > According to the Antietam National Park Web site, more than 3,700
      > Confederate and Union troops were killed, captured, injured or went
      > missing during the battle's afternoon phase. Tom Henrique, a
      > volunteer metal detectorist from the Gettysburg, Pa., area, said he
      > collects bullets, firearms and cartridges from the Civil War era,
      > and he loves history. On Wednesday, he said he was proud to be part
      > of science.
      > "It just also nice to be on such hallowed ground with permission,"
      > Henrique said. Debbie Cohen, geographical-information systems
      > specialist in the national resources division of the National Park
      > Service, said the apple trees will be planted in October.
      > Article URL:
      > http://www.herald-mail.com/?module=displaystory&story_id=161930&format=html
      > Tom Shay
      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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