Gettysburg, in Adams County, Pennsylvania, was founded in the 1780’s by James Gettys. It was called Gettys-town but was renamed in 1800. It became the county seat of Adams County and was incorporated to the Union in 1806. The towns position on the cross roads, made it a prosperous town. It was also a seat of learning, having two colleges. The Lutheran Theological Seminary was founded in 1826 and Pennsylvania College in 1832. The momentous events of 1863 destroyed the tranquillity of the town. The blood, shed on the battlefields here has transformed the town into an icon of those parts of the world that hold Equality paramount.
Today tourists come to pay homage to the dead soldiers, to soak in the ambience of the site of one of the most classic utterances of all time, Lincolns Gettysburg Address and to try and make sense of the human motivations that lead to the kind of carnage that took place here.
Students come to the Gettysburg College of Liberal Arts, to learn leadership skills. Living and studying in an environment of war museums, cemeteries and memorials, the College aspires to nurture future leaders who will find an alternative to war as an option for settling differences.
THE BATTLE OF GETTYSBURG:
This was one of the decisive battles of the Civil War. It was fought between July 1 and 3, 1863. By the time General Lee of the Confederacy acknowledged defeat and withdrew his troops, he had lost 28,000 brave young men. The Union forces under General Meade lost 23,000.
THE GETTYSBURG ADDRESS:
The Union had won the Battle of Gettysburg; the Confederates had lost not only the Battle, but all hopes of getting foreign recognition. An era of military occupation of the Confederate States was commencing. Abraham Lincoln, the man who was entrusted with the task of resolving the fractured country into a cohesive whole, had the unenviable task of addressing the people at the dedication of the Gettysburg National Cemetery. Adding to the complexity of his task was the fact that the soldiers who had given their lives on opposite sides of the battle front were offspring of those who had fought together 87 years previously to rid America of Colonial Imperialism.
In a mere 272 well-chosen words, Lincoln conveyed to his listeners at Gettysburg on Nov 19, 1863 the cohesiveness of the American struggle to see that government â€˜of the people, for the people and by the people shall not perish from the earth.’ This message has resonated through the years that followed and has fostered a growing global commitment to Liberty and Equality.
GETTYSBURG NNATIONAL MILITARY PARK:
The Park is spread out over 690 acres encompassing the battlefield. Over 1600 monuments of the Civil War are on display here including the canon that fired the first shot in 1863. The Soldiers National Monument in the Gettysburg National Cemetery marks the spot from which Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address.
Other monuments include National Civil War Wax Museum, Dobbin House, Wills House and the Eisenhower National Historic Site.
The college was established in 1832 and was then known as Pennsylvania College. It is a residential facility and houses 2600 students. The college is dedicated to building leaders through a state of the art programme in Liberal Arts. The college employs innovative teaching techniques such as experiential learning, extensive career network, co-curricular and off campus services.