Wednesday, June 26, 2024

Little Round Top Reopens

Good news for you Civil War buffs out there. After two years of work, the Little Round Top rehabilitation project is now complete. 

This piece of ground was one of the keys to the Gettysburg battlefield on July 2, 1863. It didn't have that name back then. People knew it as High Knob, Rock Hill, Granite Spur, Sugar Loaf Hill, or Broad Top Summit. Today Little Round Top is one of the most popular sites on the battlefield. I have biked there and jogged there -- parking is always at a premium. 

At first, the only Federal troops there were a handful of signalmen. Their existence forced Longstreet to reverse course and find another less-exposed approach for his attack that day. The extra time this provided for Meade and his troops turned out to be decisive. It was just another little "detail" of that battle that's easy to overlook but that helped determine the outcome of that day's fighting. I had planned to be at the park this weekend for the 161st anniversary of the battle. But gridlock, mixed with oppressive heat, and I do not agree. I'll go later on in the summer or maybe even in the fall when it's easier to get around and to walk, cycle, or run its 6,000 acres. 

If you haven't already done so, I encourage you to visit the battlefield and book your very own licenced battlefield guide. He or she will be glad to tailor a tour to your specific interests. I stepped on those hallowed grounds for the first time in 1999 and it was so moving that I've been back just about every year since.