What was the first Civil War battlefield or site you visited? (And – if you want to tell – how old were you during that first visit?)
My dad took us to visit Gettysburg after dropping off my brother at college in Ohio.I was 14 years old.
Fort Stevens, in Washington D. C. I was no more than five or six.
In 1993, our employer sent a group of us to attend a training session in Falls Church, VA. On the last day, the meeting ended unexpectedly at 10 am, and our flight home didn’t leave until 5 pm. I suggested that we kill some time by visiting the nearby Bull Run Battlefield. I was 53 years old.. That visit sparked an interest in the Civil War that has continued unabated. I have since visited 43 CW sites, including all the major battlefields.
Gettysburg 2015. I was 37! Had the civil war bug as a child moved away from it and caught it again a few years ago. Have been on a trip the past two years and have another next month to see Chickamauga.
Vicksburg, MS in 1978. I was 24 years old. The only major battlefield I’ve not caught since is Antietam. Did Shiloh most recently and LOVED it.
Bull Run. When I was 9 years old and I can’t remember why that was the first.
Bull Run or Fredericksburg when I was a wee lad, probably in the early 1950s. My Dad was a Civil War fan. We lived in a Washington DC suburb at the time, and our family visited numerous battlefield sites throughout Virginia and Maryland.
Back then, there was no urban sprawl and definitely nothing like I-95 traffic, which I encountered during the ECW Symposium this month in Spotsylvania. How times have changed!
Gettysburg, 1958 and I was 15
I climbed the tower on Big Round Top
Gettysburg. I was 2. The first one I remember was also Gettysburg, but I was 9. We stayed in the Drummer Boy campground. Big family trip to the east coast.
In 1961, when I was 7 going on 8, my mother took my brother and I on a lengthy vacation from Kentucky through Virginia and Pennsylvania. I know we went to Gettysburg, and I remember the Electric Map and Dobbins House Diorama. We also went through Fredericksburg, so I guess I should call that the first one since it would have been on the way to Gettysburg. I remember being at the stone wall.
Upon further review …
It would have been Petersburg, because we went to the Crater on the way to Williamsburg.
Wilson’s Creek. Don’t remember exactly when, but mid ’70s so in my early teens.
Perryville in the fall of 1992 when I was 19 and a sophomore in college. I joined a campus Cibil War group and they were going to help at Perryville’s re-enactment, so I hitched a ride with them and helped over the next couple of days, even staying in the park manager’s office one night.
I then visited Gettysburg sand Antietam the next summer with family
That’s awesome. I really enjoyed that battlefield
Fort Sumter. My parents were not interested in history and only traveled to visit relatives. I was 40 before I got to any sites.
Cold Harbor- 7 years old
Gettysburg when I was 7. I remember nothing of the experience except my dad killed a bee on the tour bus.
My favorite would have to be Shiloh was ten years old. The year 1957. Thanks to my parents the civil war bug took hold of me. Have been to many battlefields sine then. Shiloh still ranks as the best.
Gettysburg, 2010; I was 67. It was wonderful.
I bothered my parents enough to drive me to Gettysburg from Chicago when I was six in 1988 for the 125th anniversary. I’ve visited 29 more since then and hope to keep it going
Lexington, VA on a school trip – 4th grade. We went to Lee Chapel and the VMI museum. I wonder if they’re even allowed to take students there these days.
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