“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Gettysburg in Adams County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)

The History of Gettysburg College

The History of Gettysburg College Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Donovan, October 24, 2015
1. The History of Gettysburg College Marker
Inscription. "No one can come to Gettysburg unstirred by thoughts of those who fought here, and of him who spoke here." - President Dwight D. Eisenhower, Gettyburg College Trustee (1961-1969)

Founded in 1832, Gettysburg College (originally Pennsylvania College) moved to its current location in 1837 on land purchased from abolitionist Thaddeus Stevens. Twenty-six years later, the small liberal arts college found itself in the path of a vicious civil war.

The Confederate army entered Pennsylvania in June 1863. Many students took up arms to protect the state from the Southern invasion. Those who remained on campus on July 1 were in class at the Edifice (now Pennsylvania Hall) when the first echoes of cannon fire announced the battle's arrival. Students and faculty scattered to safety just before the advancing Confederate forces pursued retreating Union troops across the college grounds. Confederate troops later converted the Edifice into a field hospital, filling it with as many as 900 wounded and dying men.

Eventually the armies left town, the wounded recovered and the dead were buried, but the battle changed Gettysburg forever. Students had become soldiers, captives, and doctors. When the College's fall term began, bloodstains still marked the floors of its classrooms. In November 1863 the toll of the terrible
The History of Gettysburg College Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Donovan, October 24, 2015
2. The History of Gettysburg College Marker
Picture shows the entrance to the John F. Jaeger Center from the parking lot, with the marker shown on the left.
battle was still fresh in their minds when they gathered at the newly completed Soldiers' National Cemetery and witnessed President Lincoln's famous Gettysburg address.

In 1921 the school's name officially became Gettysburg College, a change symbolic of the indelible ties forged in the summer of 1863 between the College, the town, and the battle. Today students are immersed in that powerful history as they live and learn on hallowed ground.

History and Tradition at the College
Students continue to experience the history that made Gettysburg famous. The 25th, 50th and 75th reunions of the battle brought veterans onto campus. Decades later, new students participate in the First-Year Walk, a recreation of the 1863 procession to the Soldiers' National Cemetery for a reading of the Gettysburg Address. Students also have the opportunity to take advantage of the College's prestigious Civil War programs, which promote intensive historical study at the site of one of the war's most crucial battles.

At the time of the battle, Gettysburg College consisted of three main buildings and employed seven professors.

A monument in town honors the efforts of the College students who joined the state militia in June 1863.

For the 75th and final reunion of the Battle of Gettysburg, the campus again became a campground for veterans; including the men of the 12th Infantry, shown here.
Erected by Gettysburg College.
Location. 39° 50.257′ N, 77° 14.326′ W. Marker is in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, in Adams County. Marker can be reached from West Broadway 0.2 miles west of College Avenue, on the left when traveling west. Click for map. Marker is located in the parking lot for The John F. Jaeger Center. Marker is in this post office area: Gettysburg PA 17325, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. 1971 T.C. Williams High School Football Team Honor Oak (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); A Historic Year (about 600 feet away); Gettysburg College Veterans Memorial (about 800 feet away); 157th Regiment New York Volunteers (approx. 0.2 miles away); Gettysburg Battlefield Preservation Association (approx. mile away); The College Hospital (approx. 0.3 miles away); First Brigade (approx. 0.3 miles away); 95th New York Infantry (approx. 0.3 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Gettysburg.
Categories. EducationWar, US Civil
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bill Donovan of Maplewood, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 110 times since then and 52 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Bill Donovan of Maplewood, New Jersey. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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