Saving History Saturday: The Plank Farm at Gettysburg Has Been Saved

Just this week, the American Battlefield Trust and the Land Conservancy of Adams County announced they have officially saved the 143-acre Plank Farm at Gettysburg.

Official American Battlefield Trust map showing the Plank Farm property at Gettysburg. Courtesy of the American Battlefield Trust.

Over the course of the three-day battle in July 1863, troops of both armies moved through the property near Seminary Ridge.

”On July 1, 1863, elements of the Union First Corps under General John Reynolds double-quicked across this property as they moved to the sound of the battle’s opening shots …

On July 2, Confederate General James Longstreet’s divisions, under General John Bell Hood and General Lafayette McLaws, marched across this property as they sought to discover the Union left flank …

On July 3, Confederate General George Pickett led his division over this land, up the slope to Seminary Ridge, and onto the battlefield where the charge that came to bear his name would be bloodily repulsed.”

Unlike many other properties the Trust has been able to save, this property not only witnessed troop movement, but also the battle’s aftermath. The Plank Farm property was the site of one of the largest Confederate field hospitals at Gettysburg. According to the Trust, over 1,500 soldiers were treated there, which included John Bell Hood. Additionally, 60 soldiers (including several unknowns) were originally buried on the property.

The Plank Farm is a tremendous victory.

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