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Trip Report from November 23, 2007

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  • Tom Shay
    My thanks to the lads who ventured to Antietam today to join Stephen and myself in walking those hallowed fields. With temps over last days around 70 degrees,
    Message 1 of 10 , Nov 23, 2007
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      My thanks to the lads who ventured to Antietam today to join Stephen and myself in walking those hallowed fields. With temps over last days around 70 degrees, it surely was a shock to experience nasty winds and temps in low 40's today For our fist talk, we made use of the VC's upper room , which offers a pristine view of the park and distant mountain ranges (indeed you can see 4 states). Within the room's warm confines, Stephen Recker provided an excellent in-depth review of the Maryland Campaign, S.O. 191, and lots of insight how the campaign evolved into the battle along Antietam Creek.

      Next I distributed the handouts and we embarked on my West Woods trek. We walked north along the pike, entered into the woods, and descended the western slope onto Rt 65. We crossed over and visited the Locher Farm. Here the winds and temps were greatly diminished by the woods and slopes; in fact it got quite warm with a nice sun shining. Next we continued west, and hiked to top of Hauser Ridge, where I enjoyed everyone's appreciation of such a grand position for the Rebel artillery. Indeed, as Stephen later pointed out, that ridge could have server Lee well as a final stand, possibly providing the AOP with a devastating repulse.

      We returned to the VC via the new West Woods trail; stopping briefly at the 125th PA monument. Next, we met at the Sunken Road parking lot and headed to the Roulette Farm. Then we hiked farther east to the spot where Meagher's boys of Erin formed up for their assault on Bloody Lane. I took our group straight up the long slope while discussing the terrain, fence lines, and experiences of the Irish lads as they moving uphill.

      Next, we met with Stephen at the VC to begin his OT Reilly tour. We crossed the pike to stop at the Reilly monument to the Dunkard Church, which practically no one bothers to visit. We headed into town for lunch at Capt Bender's. Then we continued our OT Reilly walk thru the town, Stephen treated us to an extensive set of rare photos, many of which he was showing to the public for the first time.

      We stopped at the Cemetery for a visit to site of Lee's Rock, then crossed the road to visit OT Reilly's gravesite. Stephen noted that the tombstone is in error, as Reilly's year of death is mis-stated as 1945 (actually was 1944).

      For our final tour, we embarked on the day's longest hike. Parking at the Burnside Overlook, we crossed the bridge and hiked north to re-cross the creek and ascend the slopes while following the advance of Christ's brigade. Then we stomped south to the Otto Farm and up the Otto Lane to the 40-Acre Cornfield. Stephen gave an excellent tactical study of the action as Rodman's and Wilcox's divisions advance toward Sharpsburg. We followed the action as AP Hill arrived, viewed where 4 RI and 16th CT were outflanked, and discussed how the IX Corps' attack came to a halt. We finished by 5 PM and dusk arrived and everyone headed home, undoubtedly with plenty of sore feet! My thanks again to all who took the time to join us.

      Tom Shay

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • dickeyr46@comcast.net
      Tom and Stephen, Thanks so much for a wonderful way to spend Black Friday. I believe I can speak for the 10 or so of us enthusiasts who joined you to walk
      Message 2 of 10 , Nov 24, 2007
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        Tom and Stephen,
        Thanks so much for a wonderful way to spend "Black Friday." I believe I can speak for the 10 or so of us enthusiasts who joined you to walk the fields of Antietam that you two did a great job of entertaining and best of all, educating us.
        Thanks for the time you spent organizing and preparing for a full day's activity as well as the wonderful stories that add so much to the history. It is appreciated, job well done!
        Ron Dickey
        -------------- Original message ----------------------
        From: "Tom Shay" <RoteBaron@...>
        > My thanks to the lads who ventured to Antietam today to join Stephen and myself
        > in walking those hallowed fields.




        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Stephen Recker
        Thanks for all of the kind words. It was a great day. Tom Shay, as usual, showed up with a lot of talent and a lot of great maps. Karl Fauser had a huge
        Message 3 of 10 , Nov 24, 2007
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          Thanks for all of the kind words. It was a great day. Tom Shay, as
          usual, showed up with a lot of talent and a lot of great maps. Karl
          Fauser had a huge article printed for me and everyone else had
          enthusiasm and great stories. It was really a lot of fun. Let's do it
          again.

          Stephen
        • G E Mayers
          Dear Tom and Stephen, If I could have been able to join you yesterday, I would have! But the combination of no available vehicle and watching our 8 mos old
          Message 4 of 10 , Nov 24, 2007
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            Dear Tom and Stephen,

            If I could have been able to join you yesterday, I would have!
            But the combination of no available vehicle and watching our 8
            mos old granddaughter, it was not in the cards this year.

            Maybe we can do this again on a Saturday when the weather is a
            little warmer and when the trees are just beginning to turn green
            but not too much!

            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: "Tom Shay" <RoteBaron@...>
            To: <TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com>
            Sent: Friday, November 23, 2007 11:22 PM
            Subject: [TalkAntietam] Trip Report from November 23, 2007


            > My thanks to the lads who ventured to Antietam today to join
            > Stephen and myself in walking those hallowed fields. With temps
            > over last days around 70 degrees, it surely was a shock to
            > experience nasty winds and temps in low 40's today For our fist
            > talk, we made use of the VC's upper room , which offers a
            > pristine view of the park and distant mountain ranges (indeed
            > you can see 4 states). Within the room's warm confines, Stephen
            > Recker provided an excellent in-depth review of the Maryland
            > Campaign, S.O. 191, and lots of insight how the campaign
            > evolved into the battle along Antietam Creek.
            >
            > Next I distributed the handouts and we embarked on my West
            > Woods trek. We walked north along the pike, entered into the
            > woods, and descended the western slope onto Rt 65. We crossed
            > over and visited the Locher Farm. Here the winds and temps were
            > greatly diminished by the woods and slopes; in fact it got
            > quite warm with a nice sun shining. Next we continued west, and
            > hiked to top of Hauser Ridge, where I enjoyed everyone's
            > appreciation of such a grand position for the Rebel artillery.
            > Indeed, as Stephen later pointed out, that ridge could have
            > server Lee well as a final stand, possibly providing the AOP
            > with a devastating repulse.
            >
            > We returned to the VC via the new West Woods trail; stopping
            > briefly at the 125th PA monument. Next, we met at the Sunken
            > Road parking lot and headed to the Roulette Farm. Then we hiked
            > farther east to the spot where Meagher's boys of Erin formed up
            > for their assault on Bloody Lane. I took our group straight up
            > the long slope while discussing the terrain, fence lines, and
            > experiences of the Irish lads as they moving uphill.
            >
            > Next, we met with Stephen at the VC to begin his OT Reilly
            > tour. We crossed the pike to stop at the Reilly monument to the
            > Dunkard Church, which practically no one bothers to visit. We
            > headed into town for lunch at Capt Bender's. Then we continued
            > our OT Reilly walk thru the town, Stephen treated us to an
            > extensive set of rare photos, many of which he was showing to
            > the public for the first time.
            >
            > We stopped at the Cemetery for a visit to site of Lee's Rock,
            > then crossed the road to visit OT Reilly's gravesite. Stephen
            > noted that the tombstone is in error, as Reilly's year of death
            > is mis-stated as 1945 (actually was 1944).
            >
            > For our final tour, we embarked on the day's longest hike.
            > Parking at the Burnside Overlook, we crossed the bridge and
            > hiked north to re-cross the creek and ascend the slopes while
            > following the advance of Christ's brigade. Then we stomped
            > south to the Otto Farm and up the Otto Lane to the 40-Acre
            > Cornfield. Stephen gave an excellent tactical study of the
            > action as Rodman's and Wilcox's divisions advance toward
            > Sharpsburg. We followed the action as AP Hill arrived, viewed
            > where 4 RI and 16th CT were outflanked, and discussed how the
            > IX Corps' attack came to a halt. We finished by 5 PM and dusk
            > arrived and everyone headed home, undoubtedly with plenty of
            > sore feet! My thanks again to all who took the time to join us.
            >
            > Tom Shay
            >
            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            >
            >
          • robert blama
            I ve been a member of the group but usually just read and don t discuss. I hope this will improve inthe future. I wanted to come along on the trek you made
            Message 5 of 10 , Nov 24, 2007
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              I've been a member of the group but usually just read and don't discuss. I hope this will improve inthe future. I wanted to come along on the trek you made on Fri but had previous plans that turned sour mid day on Fri. It would be nice if you do this kind of thing in the future so I can catch up on your expertise. Keep the discussions going.
              ----- Original Message -----
              From: Tom Shay
              To: TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com
              Sent: Friday, November 23, 2007 11:22 PM
              Subject: [TalkAntietam] Trip Report from November 23, 2007


              My thanks to the lads who ventured to Antietam today to join Stephen and myself in walking those hallowed fields. With temps over last days around 70 degrees, it surely was a shock to experience nasty winds and temps in low 40's today For our fist talk, we made use of the VC's upper room , which offers a pristine view of the park and distant mountain ranges (indeed you can see 4 states). Within the room's warm confines, Stephen Recker provided an excellent in-depth review of the Maryland Campaign, S.O. 191, and lots of insight how the campaign evolved into the battle along Antietam Creek.

              Next I distributed the handouts and we embarked on my West Woods trek. We walked north along the pike, entered into the woods, and descended the western slope onto Rt 65. We crossed over and visited the Locher Farm. Here the winds and temps were greatly diminished by the woods and slopes; in fact it got quite warm with a nice sun shining. Next we continued west, and hiked to top of Hauser Ridge, where I enjoyed everyone's appreciation of such a grand position for the Rebel artillery. Indeed, as Stephen later pointed out, that ridge could have server Lee well as a final stand, possibly providing the AOP with a devastating repulse.

              We returned to the VC via the new West Woods trail; stopping briefly at the 125th PA monument. Next, we met at the Sunken Road parking lot and headed to the Roulette Farm. Then we hiked farther east to the spot where Meagher's boys of Erin formed up for their assault on Bloody Lane. I took our group straight up the long slope while discussing the terrain, fence lines, and experiences of the Irish lads as they moving uphill.

              Next, we met with Stephen at the VC to begin his OT Reilly tour. We crossed the pike to stop at the Reilly monument to the Dunkard Church, which practically no one bothers to visit. We headed into town for lunch at Capt Bender's. Then we continued our OT Reilly walk thru the town, Stephen treated us to an extensive set of rare photos, many of which he was showing to the public for the first time.

              We stopped at the Cemetery for a visit to site of Lee's Rock, then crossed the road to visit OT Reilly's gravesite. Stephen noted that the tombstone is in error, as Reilly's year of death is mis-stated as 1945 (actually was 1944).

              For our final tour, we embarked on the day's longest hike. Parking at the Burnside Overlook, we crossed the bridge and hiked north to re-cross the creek and ascend the slopes while following the advance of Christ's brigade. Then we stomped south to the Otto Farm and up the Otto Lane to the 40-Acre Cornfield. Stephen gave an excellent tactical study of the action as Rodman's and Wilcox's divisions advance toward Sharpsburg. We followed the action as AP Hill arrived, viewed where 4 RI and 16th CT were outflanked, and discussed how the IX Corps' attack came to a halt. We finished by 5 PM and dusk arrived and everyone headed home, undoubtedly with plenty of sore feet! My thanks again to all who took the time to join us.

              Tom Shay

              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]





              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Thomas Clemens
              Tom Shay et al, I got involved in some Homeowner-type projects on Friday and never got over to the battlefield, to my regret. It sounds liek you had a good
              Message 6 of 10 , Nov 25, 2007
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                Tom Shay et al,
                I got involved in some Homeowner-type projects on Friday and never got
                over to the battlefield, to my regret. It sounds liek you had a good
                day, and yes, it was cold and windy!
                On the Final Attack Trail and the Union approach trail the tree-cutting
                and brush clearing have been the focus of the last several Save Historic
                Antietam Foundation Work Days. We cut a lot of the trees along the Otto
                Farm lane and the cleared area at the top of the ridge where the Parrott
                rifle represents Durell's battery. The Natural Resources staff there
                are great and do a lot of work in addition to what we do, but our Work
                Days always make a big difference. On Nov. 10 we cut about 125 yards of
                trees that obscured the view from the Visitr's Center to French's
                attack. If you ever have the time, come join us for a day of scene
                restoration.
                On Dec. 8 there is an opportunity, weather permitting, to plant 176
                apple trees in the next phase of the Piper Orchard restoration. Contact
                me of the NPS staff ofr details and to let us know you're coming.
                TheSHAF website has more information, "shaf.org " Our next scheduled
                Work Day is tentatively set for April 5, again weather permitting. Come
                help make a difference in restoring America's best preserved
                battlefield.


                Thomas G. Clemens D.A.
                Professor of History
                Hagerstown Community College
              • Stephen Recker
                Tom, We missed you...and Boomer. We certainly did notice the tree cuts along the Otto Lane, and SHAF was given credit on the ground. It really makes a big
                Message 7 of 10 , Nov 25, 2007
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                  Tom,

                  We missed you...and Boomer. We certainly did notice the tree cuts along
                  the Otto Lane, and SHAF was given credit on the ground. It really makes
                  a big difference. Thanks for the hard work up there.

                  Stephen

                  On Sunday, November 25, 2007, at 09:04 AM, Thomas Clemens wrote:

                  > On the Final Attack Trail and the Union approach trail the tree-cutting
                  > and brush clearing have been the focus of the last several Save
                  > Historic
                  > Antietam Foundation Work Days. We cut a lot of the trees along the Otto
                  > Farm lane and the cleared area at the top of the ridge where the
                  > Parrott
                  > rifle represents Durell's battery. The Natural Resources staff there
                  > are great and do a lot of work in addition to what we do, but our Work
                  > Days always make a big difference.
                • Thomas Clemens
                  Steve, Bomber and I walked the Final Attack Trail yesterday and I see even more trees cut since last week. Joe Calzarette and the guys at Natural Resources
                  Message 8 of 10 , Nov 26, 2007
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                    Steve,
                    Bomber and I walked the Final Attack Trail yesterday and I see even
                    more trees cut since last week. Joe Calzarette and the guys at Natural
                    Resources Management are doing a wonderful job.


                    Dr. Thomas G. Clemens
                    Professor of History
                    Hagerstown Community College



                    >>> Stephen Recker <recker@...> 11/25/2007 1:26 PM
                    >>>
                    Tom,

                    We missed you...and Boomer. We certainly did notice the tree cuts along

                    the Otto Lane, and SHAF was given credit on the ground. It really makes

                    a big difference. Thanks for the hard work up there.

                    Stephen

                    On Sunday, November 25, 2007, at 09:04 AM, Thomas Clemens wrote:

                    > On the Final Attack Trail and the Union approach trail the
                    tree-cutting
                    > and brush clearing have been the focus of the last several Save
                    > Historic
                    > Antietam Foundation Work Days. We cut a lot of the trees along the
                    Otto
                    > Farm lane and the cleared area at the top of the ridge where the
                    > Parrott
                    > rifle represents Durell's battery. The Natural Resources staff there
                    > are great and do a lot of work in addition to what we do, but our
                    Work
                    > Days always make a big difference.
                  • eighth_conn_inf
                    Tom, April 5 also looks like the CWPT workday; does that make any difference? I have a hardbound copy of your doctoral thesis on the way--I look forward to
                    Message 9 of 10 , Nov 26, 2007
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                      Tom,

                      April 5 also looks like the CWPT workday; does that make any
                      difference?

                      I have a hardbound copy of your doctoral thesis on the way--I look
                      forward to reading it.

                      Larry F.

                      --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "Thomas Clemens" <clemenst@...>
                      wrote:
                      >
                      > Tom Shay et al,
                      > I got involved in some Homeowner-type projects on Friday and never
                      got
                      > over to the battlefield, to my regret. It sounds liek you had a
                      good
                      > day, and yes, it was cold and windy!
                      > On the Final Attack Trail and the Union approach trail the tree-
                      cutting
                      > and brush clearing have been the focus of the last several Save
                      Historic
                      > Antietam Foundation Work Days. We cut a lot of the trees along the
                      Otto
                      > Farm lane and the cleared area at the top of the ridge where the
                      Parrott
                      > rifle represents Durell's battery. The Natural Resources staff
                      there
                      > are great and do a lot of work in addition to what we do, but our
                      Work
                      > Days always make a big difference. On Nov. 10 we cut about 125
                      yards of
                      > trees that obscured the view from the Visitr's Center to French's
                      > attack. If you ever have the time, come join us for a day of scene
                      > restoration.
                      > On Dec. 8 there is an opportunity, weather permitting, to plant 176
                      > apple trees in the next phase of the Piper Orchard restoration.
                      Contact
                      > me of the NPS staff ofr details and to let us know you're coming.
                      > TheSHAF website has more information, "shaf.org " Our next
                      scheduled
                      > Work Day is tentatively set for April 5, again weather permitting.
                      Come
                      > help make a difference in restoring America's best preserved
                      > battlefield.
                      >
                      >
                      > Thomas G. Clemens D.A.
                      > Professor of History
                      > Hagerstown Community College
                      >
                    • Thomas Clemens
                      Damn, yes it does. We usually pick a different day since they so fairly mundane little projects. Thanks for letting me know. ... Tom, April 5 also looks like
                      Message 10 of 10 , Nov 26, 2007
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                        Damn, yes it does. We usually pick a different day since they so fairly
                        mundane little projects. Thanks for letting me know.

                        >>> "eighth_conn_inf" <eighth_conn_inf@...> 11/26/2007 2:22 PM
                        >>>
                        Tom,

                        April 5 also looks like the CWPT workday; does that make any
                        difference?

                        I have a hardbound copy of your doctoral thesis on the way--I look
                        forward to reading it.

                        Larry F.

                        --- In TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com, "Thomas Clemens" <clemenst@...>
                        wrote:
                        >
                        > Tom Shay et al,
                        > I got involved in some Homeowner-type projects on Friday and never
                        got
                        > over to the battlefield, to my regret. It sounds liek you had a
                        good
                        > day, and yes, it was cold and windy!
                        > On the Final Attack Trail and the Union approach trail the tree-
                        cutting
                        > and brush clearing have been the focus of the last several Save
                        Historic
                        > Antietam Foundation Work Days. We cut a lot of the trees along the
                        Otto
                        > Farm lane and the cleared area at the top of the ridge where the
                        Parrott
                        > rifle represents Durell's battery. The Natural Resources staff
                        there
                        > are great and do a lot of work in addition to what we do, but our
                        Work
                        > Days always make a big difference. On Nov. 10 we cut about 125
                        yards of
                        > trees that obscured the view from the Visitr's Center to French's
                        > attack. If you ever have the time, come join us for a day of scene
                        > restoration.
                        > On Dec. 8 there is an opportunity, weather permitting, to plant 176
                        > apple trees in the next phase of the Piper Orchard restoration.
                        Contact
                        > me of the NPS staff ofr details and to let us know you're coming.
                        > TheSHAF website has more information, "shaf.org " Our next
                        scheduled
                        > Work Day is tentatively set for April 5, again weather permitting.
                        Come
                        > help make a difference in restoring America's best preserved
                        > battlefield.
                        >
                        >
                        > Thomas G. Clemens D.A.
                        > Professor of History
                        > Hagerstown Community College
                        >
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