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Gettysburg Battlefield in Postcards From the Civil War Centennial, 1961 - 1964

Discussion in 'Battle of Gettysburg' started by James N., Sep 7, 2017.

  1. James N.

    James N. Captain Forum Host Civil War Photo Contest
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    Image (3).jpg
    ETERNAL LIGHT PEACE MEMORIAL - Located on the field of battle is this monumental emblem, symbolic of peace and union, dedicated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt at the 75th Anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg, July, 1938.

    In anticipation of another upcoming September to Remember gathering at Gettysburg later this month I've dug out my old souvenir postcards from Centennial visits in 1961 and 1964 to add to last year's previous post https://civilwartalk.com/threads/gettysburg-during-the-centennial.125469/ If anyone can remember all the way back to the dark ages before "social media" like E-mail, Twitter, etc. these little missives served that purpose quite nicely, even if not as quickly. Of course they can still be purchased at tourist spots like Gettysburg, but probably not in the variety and quantity they once were as demonstrated here.

    I propose to post a few over the next week to whet the appetite of those who will be attending and invite others to do likewise. Mine were almost all purchased during my very first visit in July, 1961; the three or four that date later from August, 1964 will be indicated like the one below. The captions in italics will be the text on the backs of the cards like that above; other notes will be in regular type.

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    ETERNAL LIGHT PEACE MEMORIAL AT TWILIGHT - This symbol of Peace and Union was dedicated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt at the seventy-fifth anniversary of the battle of Gettysburg, July, 1938.(1964)

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    PEACE LIGHT INN and COURT located on the battlefield at the entrance to Peace Light Memorial - 27 beautiful air conditioned rooms with individual controlled steam heat, open the year 'round specializing in Home Cooked Food. Telephone ED 4-1416

    The "tour" will follow generally the NPS tour route of the times other than these which I've placed first since on both occasions we stayed at the now long-defunct Peace Light Inn above.
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2017
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  3. mofederal

    mofederal First Sergeant

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    These are interesting. I am half surprised they don't have Betty Page postcards from Gettysburg. I found them still being used in the 70's. but that was Florida.
     
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  4. James N.

    James N. Captain Forum Host Civil War Photo Contest
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    Area of the First Day's Battle
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    STATUES OF GENERAL BUFORD, GENERAL REYNOLDS - Cannon with flag fired the opening shot at the Battle of Gettysburg. The number of the cannon was taken by the gunner who fired it and years later it was located in an arsenal and was returned to Gettysburg and mounted on the ridge from which the first shot was fired. This caption must've been copied verbatim from another photo since there's no "flag", although it does have a bronze plaque attached to the top of the barrel. The one being so described is in the left foreground at the base of Buford's statue.

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    GENERAL LEE'S HEADQUARTERS - Standing on Seminary Ridge midway between the Seminary Buildings and the old tapeworm (?) railroad cut is this picturesque stone house which was used for a short time by General Lee as his headquarters and is now the Lee Museum. This photo appears to predate the motel which has recently been demolished, but it's hard for me to remember at this late date.

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    OAK RIDGE TOWER - This large steel tower is one of many erected in the Oak Ridge section as lookout points for the entire area. Of course it IS "one of many erected" but the only one on Oak Ridge or the entire northern part of the battlefield.

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    "OLD DORM" GETTYSBURG COLLEGE - "Old Dorm," built in 1837, is the hub of the campus of Gettysburg College. Known also as Pennsylvania Hall and the White Mother, this building with its dignity, perfect classical lines and proportions, was the first home of all the College. During the civil War, it was used both as a hospital and signal tower. It stands now a modernly furnished and equipped dormitory for men students of Gettysburg College.

    As usual, Culp's Hill gets little in the way of coverage or representation, even among postcard vendors! I have placed my single example here due to its nearness to the tour route followed.

    Culp's Hill Area
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    SPANGLER'S SPRING - This spring, located at the foot of Culp's Hill, supplied troops of both the North and the South with water for their wounded comrades. Tradition has it that the men of both sides mingled freely here during the second day of the battle, while acquiring water. Of course this is another of those charming but unlikely "incidents of the war" that has drawn much scrutiny and resulting disbelief in more recent years, but which at the time fit right in with the spirit of reconciliation common during the Centennial, much like the also-now-discredited Gordon-Barlow Incident.
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2017
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  5. James N.

    James N. Captain Forum Host Civil War Photo Contest
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    Remember that Gettysburg, like most tourist attractions of the time, was common "family" tourist fare, thereby making Betty an unlikely subject for most of the tourist traps like the ones I tended to frequent.
     
  6. mofederal

    mofederal First Sergeant

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    Yes, that's true. I thing I never did was to inspect the nightlife in Gettysburg. Those are some nice shots in those old postcards. I'm sure they were on sale the first time I was at Gettysburg.
     
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  7. James N.

    James N. Captain Forum Host Civil War Photo Contest
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    Gettysburg Museums
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    GETTYSBURG NATIONAL MUSEUM - Located near the spot where Abraham Lincoln delivered the immortal Gettysburg Address, the NATIONAL MUSEUM contains the nation's largest collection of Civil War relics and is home of the ELECTRIC MAP which re-enacts the Battle of Gettysburg. Founded by George Rosensteel to house his immense collection of battle-related relics, artifacts, and Electrical Map, it was not yet truly "national" because in 1961 it had yet to be acquired by the National Park Service and was still a private concern. By the time of my third visit in 1982 it was then serving in an enlarged and remodeled capacity as the official NPS Visitor Center. It served as park headquarters and principal museum, replacing the Centennial-era Cyclorama Center until the completion of the current Visitor Center when both buildings were then demolished.

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    Cliff Arquette's SOLDIERS MUSEUM - Located in the Civil War's historic old National Soldier's Orphan Homestead building just north of Cemetery Hill - 777 Baltimore St. This was another private museum, created to showcase the model soldiers created by actor and comic Cliff Arquette, shown in front of his building and insert showing him in his popular TV character Charley Weaver. The building also reportedly served for a time as the headquarters of Union Maj. Gen. Oliver O. Howard during the battle. Currently (as of last year) it was serving as starting point and the first stop for yet another of Gettysburg's numerous Ghost Tours!

    Image (9).jpg JENNIE WADE HOUSE - Jennie Wade was the only citizen of the town of Gettysburg who was killed during the three days' fighting there. While attending to household duties at her home she was killed by a bullet on the morning of July 3rd, 1863. The house is now used as a museum and contains many marks of the great conflict. Of course this was really the home of Jennie's sister who had just given birth and Jennie was there taking care of her. All three of these private museums were along the Baltimore Pike and Steinwehr Avenue approaches to Cemetery Hill.

    East Cemetery Hill
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    ARMY OF THE POTOMAC - Site of 11th Corp Headquarters on Cemetery Ridge. (sic) Statue of Maj. Gen. Oliver Howard, U.S.A.

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    MONUMENT TO RICKETTS' BATTERY ON CEMETERY RIDGE. (sic)

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    STATUE OF UNION SOLDIER ON EAST CEMETERY RIDGE (sic) - Here Meade's troops stopped the Confederate attack on July 2nd evening.

    Gettysburg National Cemetery
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    THE NATIONAL CEMETERY - This aerial view clearly shows the rows of markers for both the known and unknown Northern dead who were interned here. The known dead total 3,555 and are buried in eighteen different groups, each state having its own individual section. The New York State Monument which is in the foreground and in the rear and center stands the National Monument which is near the spot where Lincoln delivered his immortal speech of dedication and is the nation's tribute to her sons who gave their lives as the price of victory on the field of Gettysburg.

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    SOLDIER'S NATIONAL MONUMENT - This monument, located in the National Cemetery where more than 3600 Union soldiers are buried, is near the exact spot where Lincoln delivered his immortal Gettysburg Address.

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    NEW YORK STATE MONUMENT IN NATIONAL CEMETERY - This structure is one of the most imposing on the battlefield and stands within the National Cemetery. It overlooks the section in which lie the dead of the Empire State. The known dead in the National Cemetery are buried in eighteen different groups, each state having its own individual section. New York State has erected this memorial to her group, which constitutes 867 graves, the largest state group in the cemetery.

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    LINCOLN'S SPEECH MEMORIAL - The Lincoln Speech Memorial, located in the National Cemetery near the spot where on November 19, 1863, at the dedication of the Soldiers' National Cemetery, Lincoln delivered the World-Famous Gettysburg Address. It is a Speech Memorial and not intended as a Lincoln Memorial.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2017
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  8. George Thomas

    George Thomas Cadet

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    Fascinating view of the Jennie Wade house with all the grass to the left and the trees behind it. That space has been swallowed up by the hotel next door and an expansion of the adjacent gift store.
     
  9. Jimklag

    Jimklag Captain Silver Patron

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    Amazing postcards, James. It's great that you held on to them all these years.
     
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  10. E_just_E

    E_just_E 1st Lieutenant Forum Host

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    That whole area has really changed. This is a view North from Baltimore Street at the Southern edge of the town, taken around the days of the Gettysburg address in November of 1863. The Wade house is behind and to the right of the photographer (click to enlarge) :

    Shower05200925.jpg
     
  11. frontrank2

    frontrank2 1st Lieutenant Forum Host

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    Where's General Pickett's Buffet? :hungry:
     
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  12. JOHN42768

    JOHN42768 2nd Lieutenant Trivia Game Winner

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    Very enjoyable, thanks
     
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  13. Mike Serpa

    Mike Serpa Captain

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    I didn't know Cliff Arquette was a Civil War buff. I remember him as Charley Weaver on Hollywood Squares.
     
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  14. James N.

    James N. Captain Forum Host Civil War Photo Contest
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    Cemetery Ridge
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    HIGH WATER MARK OF THE REBELLION - This unusual and artistic memorial, marking the end of Pickett's Charge, also indicates the termination of one of the most gallant offensives recorded in history as it was here that the tide of the Confederacy success (sic) was turned. Although there's no mention of the Copse of Trees here, the following postcard makes up for it.

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    PICKETT'S CHARGE - JULY 3, 1863 - Men of Pickett's division reached the Union lines here and at the Copse of Trees to your left. Fierce hand-to-hand fighting took place in this area before a Union flank attack ended the threat. (1964) This shows one of the then-brand-new interpretive markers installed for the Centennial of the battle in 1963. Note also the telephone poles along the Emmitsburg Road whose lines have since been relocated or buried!

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    On display in the Cyclorama at Gettysburg, this scene taken from Paul Phillipoteaux's famous painting of the Battle of Gettysburg, shows Union Light Artillery driving hard to relieve guns that have been knocked out of action at the angle. (1964) The Cyclorama had only been reopened to the public the year before our visit in its home in the new 1963 Visitor Center, also known as the Cyclorama Center after the NPS acquired the National Museum and moved park headquarters there. Today, both visitor centers are nothing but memories, both demolished after the last move to the current NPS Visitor Center.

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    GENERAL MEADE'S HEADQUARTERS - Gen. Mead (sic) and his staff arrived upon the field of Gettysburg from Tarrytown (sic) at midnight on the first day of battle and established his headquarters on the west side of Tarrytown Road (sic), in the rear of Cemetery Hill. (sic) From this point he directed the battles of the second and third days. The homely little cottage, still preserved, shows the marks of shot and shell. Of course the house is located on the Taneytown Road on the reverse slope of Cemetery Ridge.

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    THE MINNESOTA MONUMENT - One of the many beautiful memorials on the battlefield at Gettysburg, Pa., dedicated to the brave men who fought so gallantly here. In the background is a view of the Pa. State Monument. (1964)

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    FATHER CORBY MONUMENT - The Irish Brigade, composed mostly of New Yorkers, was ordered into battle, but prior to their entrance into the fight, Father Corby asked permission to talk with the men of the brigade for a few minutes. He delivered a momentous talk before pronouncing an absolution for all his men. Immediately thereafter they were commanded into battle and displayed remarkable service and fortitude.

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    Spring view, showing one of the many scenic drives around the Gettysburg National Military Park with the Major General Sedgwick Monument in the distance. This view is on Sedgwick Drive, the prolongation of Hancock Avenue, shortly before it reaches Little Round Top.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2017
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  15. James N.

    James N. Captain Forum Host Civil War Photo Contest
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    Last edited: Sep 9, 2017
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  16. Jimklag

    Jimklag Captain Silver Patron

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    Nice glob of pigeon poop on the good Father Corby. I'd have thought they would wash that off for a postcard photo.
     
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  17. James N.

    James N. Captain Forum Host Civil War Photo Contest
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    Although that's regrettably true, the 1863 Hotel - formerly a Holiday Inn - is nevertheless where we'll all be staying again at this month's September to Remember gathering!
     
  18. James N.

    James N. Captain Forum Host Civil War Photo Contest
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    Before that, he was a regular guest on the old Tonight Show when it was hosted by Jack Paar. I remember one night he was regaling the audience with an unflattering verbal picture of Joe Hooker at Chancellorsville! His carved soldiers are featured on postcards in my other Centennial thread but since I'd already posted them and they weren't really of the battlefield itself I chose not to repeat them here.
     
  19. Mike Serpa

    Mike Serpa Captain

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    I'll look for the carved soldiers thread.
     
  20. James N.

    James N. Captain Forum Host Civil War Photo Contest
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    Use the link above and scroll down past the photographs to the scanned material.
     
  21. Tom Elmore

    Tom Elmore First Sergeant

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    Still have some of these. I also once stayed at the Peace Light Inn.
     
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