The Gettysburg Foundation’s Mission
The Gettysburg Foundation is a non-profit educational organization working in partnership with the National Park Service to enhance preservation and understanding of the heritage and lasting significance of Gettysburg. In addition to operating the Gettysburg National Military Park Museum and Visitor Center, the Foundation has a broad preservation mission that includes education, land, monument and artifact preservation and battlefield rehabilitation—all in support of the National Park Service’s goals at Gettysburg.
The Foundation works to focus on the most remarkable historic events, specifically, the Gettysburg Campaign, the Battle of Gettysburg, President Abraham Lincoln’s unforgettable Gettysburg Address and President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s residence in the Gettysburg community.
The Gettysburg Foundation and the National Park Service Partnership
The Gettysburg Foundation’s broad preservation mission in partnership with the National Park Service includes work in land preservation, battlefield rehabilitation to enhance interpretation of the story of the Battle of Gettysburg, monument and cannon preservation, artifact preservation and education. The Gettysburg Foundation’s Friends of Gettysburg is made up of thousands of members from all over the country and abroad who are committed to preserving Gettysburg for future generations.
As part of its broad preservation mission, the Gettysburg Foundation operates the Gettysburg National Military Park Museum and Visitor Center on behalf of and in partnership with the National Park Service. The Foundation raised the funds for and built the Museum and Visitor Center, which opened to the public in 2008.
The Gettysburg Foundation: Objectives, Goals and Guiding Principles
- To preserve, honor and protect the natural and cultural resources associated with the Gettysburg National Military Park, the Gettysburg Campaign, and the Eisenhower National Historic Site.
- To excite visitors about the past, inspire them to want to learn more about the events that have shaped America and prepare them to become better citizens.
- Return the Gettysburg battlefield, to the extent possible, to the conditions that existed at the time of the Battle of Gettysburg so that visitors may better understand the soldiers’ experiences in one of America’s greatest battles.
- Preserve the Gettysburg battlefield, including its monuments and cannon carriages, unimpaired, for future generations.
- Preserve, protect and acquire key parcels of land related to the Battle of Gettysburg.
- Preserve, protect and acquire key artifacts and documents related to the Battle of Gettysburg, the Gettysburg Campaign and the Eisenhower National Historic Site, helping to ensure a tangible link between visitors and the soldiers and civilians who struggled at Gettysburg.
- Build and maintain a state-of-the-art Gettysburg Museum and Visitor Center to provide for the orientation, comfort and education of visitors.
- Present educational exhibits, programs, services and activities (on- and off-site) that enhance visitors’ understanding of the causes of the Civil War, the significance of the Gettysburg Campaign and the consequences of the Civil War in an effort to excite and inspire all generations interested in American history.
- Provide exhibits, programs and activities that will emphasize the importance of the history of the town while visiting the town itself, as well as the battlefield, to ensure that visitors have the most meaningful Gettysburg experience possible.
- Enlighten and encourage people of all ages to understand and support the importance of preserving and interpreting America’s historic sites and their collections.
- Provide all Friends of Gettysburg, through membership in the Gettysburg Foundation, with the opportunity to join us in achieving these goals through sharing their time, talents and financial gifts.
- The Gettysburg Foundation will inspire people to recognize the historical significance of Gettysburg and the importance of preserving, enhancing, honoring and protecting the natural and cultural resources associated with one of America’s most important places.
- Exhibits, programs and activities will be designed to appeal to the broadest possible audience in terms of age, learning styles, objectives and physical abilities. Exhibits, programs and activities will meet the highest standards for historic preservation, conservation and curatorial care of the collections, and will be designed and developed with maintenance requirements in mind. They will take full advantage of scholarship, technology and learning techniques.
- The Gettysburg Foundation will excite and inspire visitors by making the human connection, personal and emotional, to what happened at Gettysburg. Recognizing that this may be the only visit to a Civil War site for many, the Foundation will use the Gettysburg experience as a lens through which the broader issues of the era can be seen and understood.
- Through its exhibits, programs and activities, The Gettysburg Foundation will encourage visitors to experience everything that Gettysburg has to offer.
A consortium of renowned historians lends its collective support and expertise to promote the Gettysburg Foundation’s mission. Gettysburg Foundation Historians’ Council.
View the Gettysburg Foundations Annual Report here:
Support the Gettysburg Foundation
The Gettysburg Foundation and the National Park Service are committed to working together to ensure the resources associated with the Battle of Gettysburg are preserved for future generations.
By supporting the Gettysburg Foundation, you can help preserve Gettysburg’s battlefield and lessons of bravery, courage and sacrifice, ensuring a legacy of unlimited inspiration.