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Friday, 2 September 2016

Save Antietam and the Maryland Campaign!

Save Antietam and the Maryland Campaign!

You’ll recall that last week I told you about our tremendous effort to save 84 acres of key battlefield land at Antietam, South Mountain, and Shepherdstown three of the four battles of the 1862 Maryland Campaign. With the anniversary of those battles just a couple weeks away, I wanted to take another opportunity to tell you a little bit about one of those properties, the 9-acre Dunker Church tract.

As a student of the Civil War, you’ve probably seen the Dunker Church in some of the most famous photos of the Antietam battlefield. This simple, white brick house of worship was the scene of some of the battle’s severest fighting. In fact, Confederate General Stephen D. Lee called the area surrounding the Dunker Church “artillery hell” as a testament to the carnage there.

Looking at a map of the battle, you can see the importance of our 9-acre target property. Union troops under General George Greene captured the Dunker Church on the morning of September 17 then advanced onto this ground in a vicious fight with General Joseph B. Kershaw’s South Carolinians. After forcing Greene into a defensive posture around the church, the Rebels again charged across this land only to be repulsed with heavy loss.

Those familiar with the Antietam battlefield will also notice that these 9 acres are located directly across from the Visitor center and next door to the Dunker Church. Combine this with its obvious historical significance and you’ll agree that this is as important as any land we’ve saved at Antietam.

As the anniversary of the Maryland Campaign approaches, will you support the effort to Save Antietam?

Very Sincerely

Jim Lighthizer

The Civil War Trust