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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Emmitsburg in Frederick County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

St. Joseph's Valley Camp

"I did not see it multiplied, but saw it there!"

 

—Gettysburg Campaign —

 
St. Joseph's Valley Camp Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, June 22, 2008
1. St. Joseph's Valley Camp Marker
Inscription. About 80,000 Union troops settled here in Saint Joseph's Valley as June 1863 drew to a close, "until the grounds around were actually covered with Soldiers." Emmitsburg was placed under martial law, and the Vincentian priests at Saint Joseph's Church had to get passes to come and go. Those encamped on and around these grounds included Gens. George G. Meade, Oliver Otis Howard, and Philippe Regis De Trobriand. Gen. Carl Schurz and his staff were accommodated here in the White House built by Elizabeth Bayley Seton in 1810 as the first motherhouse of the Sisters of Charity.

Sister Mary Jane Stokes, who had charge of the farm and farm workers at St. Joseph's Central House, recorded her experience of feeding the starving Union soldiers.

"The poor fellows looked half-starved, lank as herrings, and barefoot. The Sisters were cutting bread all during the late afternoon and evening and were giving them bread to eat as fast as they came for it. It was afraid there would be no bread left for the Sisters' supper. However there was. After supper, since I was on duty in the kitchen, I went to Mother Ann Simeon, and told her I didn't know what the Sisters would do for breakfast next morning, for they would have no bread. Then I went to see."

Sister
Map of the Shrine image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, June 22, 2008
2. Map of the Shrine
Mary Jane added emphasis to her account with underlining: "The baking of the day was there. I did not see it multiplied, but I saw it was there!"
 
Erected by Maryland Civil War Trails.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Maryland Civil War Trails marker series.
 
Location. 39° 41.934′ N, 77° 19.645′ W. Marker is in Emmitsburg, Maryland, in Frederick County. Marker can be reached from South Seton Avenue (Business U.S. 15), on the right when traveling north. Click for map. Located in the parking lot for the National Shrine of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton. Marker is at or near this postal address: 333 South Seton Avenue, Emmitsburg MD 21727, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Daughters of Charity (here, next to this marker); Gen. John F. Reynolds (here, next to this marker); The White House (approx. 0.2 miles away); Emmitsburg Sisters of Charity (approx. 0.2 miles away but has been reported missing); Mount Saint Mary's College (approx. 0.2 miles away but
Map in the Header of the Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, June 22, 2008
3. Map in the Header of the Marker
has been reported missing); St. Elizabeth Ann Seton (approx. 0.2 miles away); Site of St. Joseph's College (approx. 0.2 miles away); Army of the Potomac (approx. 0.2 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Emmitsburg.
 
More about this marker. In the lower left is a painting of St. Joseph's Academy and Central House of Daughters of Charity by Ludwig Enke, 1873. On the right is a map of the grounds indicating noteworthy buildings and sites. Within the map is a drawing captioned The belfry of the Motherhouse was used by generals for surveillance. In the upper left is a small map indicating Civil War trails sites in the nearby area.
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
Civil War Trails Marker Cluster image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain
4. Civil War Trails Marker Cluster
In the parking lot for the National Shrine of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton. From left to right Daughters of Charity, St. Joseph's Valley Camp, and General John F. Reynolds.
Our Lady of Victory Statue image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, June 22, 2008
5. Our Lady of Victory Statue
The plaque reads:
By the end of June, 1863 an estimated 90,000 Union soldiers were located in and around these premises and some of their officers, situated in Mother Seton's White House, were planning battle strategies. It was feared that the battle would be fought here. Prayers were multiplied; orders for the Northern Army arrived. The men fell in line and took the dusty road north toward Gettysburg, where the bloody turning point of the war was fought.

The sisters promised that, should this danger be averted, a statue of Notre Dame Des Victoires would be erected. This promise was fulfilled immediately after the Civil War, and for decades this symbol of their Protectress and her Divine Son has been honored in St. Joseph's Valley.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,229 times since then and 2 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on , by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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