"Who would have selected this lovely valley as the scene of one of the most bloody struggles that has ever occurred?....Yet, here, on these smiling fields, and among these delightful groves, one of the grand battles which should decide the march of events in the history, not only of our own country, but of the world, was fought."
George T. Stevens, 77th New York Volunteer Infantry
Greetings from Maryland, where I have returned once again to don my Ranger hat and work at one of the most beautiful, and meaningful, national parks in the country. Today was my first back at the Visitor Center. It was an incredibly busy day, which tells me that things are gearing up for the 150th. It will be a busy, beautiful, and incredibly important year at Antietam, and I can assure you that we will do all we can to be up for the task of preserving and interpreting such a beautiful and meaningful battlefield.
Over the upcoming weeks and months, look for new things on here, as I shift my focus from Shiloh and the Western Theater back to Antietam and the East. During the next few months, we will see how men such as Robert E. Lee, George McClellan, "Stonewall" Jackson, Ambrose Burnside, and even my great-great-great grandfather, Elwood Rodebaugh, all wound up along the banks of Antietam Creek on the morning of September 17, 1862. On this blog, we will take a look at various generals who fought at Antietam, various parts of the battlefield which might not be seen by the common visitor, some of the stories which are not often told, and some of the new interpretations of Antietam which emphasize how the battle was actually fought, not how historians think it should have been fought. In addition, I will post updates on my research on the Army of the Potomac at Antietam for the Dr. Joseph L. Harsh Scholarship Award. So, stay tuned for this blogger/ranger's view of Antietam 150 years after the battle was fought.
As for now, while I get settled in Maryland, here are just a few shots from my early morning walk through the park today...
Philadelphia Brigade Monument in the West Woods
View of the Tompkin's Battery guns, with Elk Ridge and South Mountain in the background
The Dunker Church, with portions of the Stephen Lee Artillery guns
Stephen Lee guns, with Maryland Monument in the background
New York State Monument