Gettysburg in Adams County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
“I can see them yet…”
This building was the home of the James Pierce family during the Battle of Gettysburg. Tillie Pierce, a 15 year old school girl at the time, provided a vivid account of events from those days.
The alarm that “The Rebels Are Coming!” caused a mass exodus from Gettysburg by free, African-American citizens (8% of the population) who feared capture and enforced slavery. Tillie described their passing by her house: “I can see them yet; men and women with bundles… children also.... The greatest consternation was depicted on all their countenances as they hurried along; …towards the woods on Culp’s Hill.”
On the morning of July 2nd Confederate sharpshooters established their headquarters along the Breckenridge St. side of the Pierce house. For two days Confederates sheltered themselves outside the building while inside the Pierce’s successfully hid and sustained five wounded soldiers.
Following the battle the Pierce family took in and nursed the severely wounded Col. William Colvill, 1st Minnesota Infantry, to a successful recovery.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: African AmericansWar, US Civil.
Location. 39° 49.604′ N, 77° 13.87′ W. Marker is in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, in Adams County. Marker is at the intersection of Baltimore Street and Breckenridge Street, on the right when traveling south on Baltimore Street. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Gettysburg PA 17325, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Matilda June "Tillie" Pierce (here, next to this marker); Mary Witherow (a few steps from this marker); Schriver's Saloon and Ten-Pin Alley (a few steps from this marker); Annoying “ . . . the enemy very seriously ” (a few steps from this marker); 267 Baltimore St. (within shouting distance of this marker); A Union General Escapes Capture (within shouting distance of this marker); Mary Virginia Wade (within shouting distance of this marker); Jennie Wade Birthplace (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Gettysburg.
More about this marker. The right side of the marker contains a portrait of Tillie Pierce (ca. 1863).
Credits. This page was last revised on November 13, 2020. It was originally submitted on June 8, 2013. This page has been viewed 686 times since then and 10 times this year. Last updated on August 27, 2020, by Bradley Owen of Morgantown, West Virginia. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on June 8, 2013, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.