Gettysburg Foundation Purchases Gettysburg Railroad Station
Gettysburg Foundation, Jan. 28, 2014 —The Gettysburg Foundation held settlement today to complete the purchase of the Gettysburg Railroad Station from the Borough of Gettysburg for $500,000, not including closing and other ancillary and associated costs.
Gettysburg Foundation President Joanne Hanley stated, “The Gettysburg Foundation is pleased to acquire the Gettysburg Railroad Station from the Borough of Gettysburg.
We are very appreciative of all the hard work of the Borough, who acquired the property in May of 1998 and since then has renovated and preserved this building. The Foundation plans to hold the train station for donation to Gettysburg National Military Park once Congress passes legislation to include the station in the boundary of the park.”
Hanley continued, “Currently the Gettysburg Convention and Visitors Bureau uses the station as a visitor information center, and the Foundation plans to continue this arrangement with the CVB. We look forward to working with the National Park Service on this very important historic structure and are very pleased to be able to be the stewards of this property until it becomes part of the National Park Service. We could not have accomplished this without the tremendous financial support of the Richard King Mellon Foundation and other generous donors. ”
The lasting significance of the Gettysburg Railroad Station, also known as the Lincoln Train Station, came to be on November 18, 1863, when the President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln, arrived here for an overnight stay with local Attorney David Wills and, on the following day, the dedication of the Soldiers’ National Cemetery at Gettysburg; he departed from the Station as well. The building is also important because of its role as a hospital on July 1st and in the battle’s aftermath once rail service was restored to Gettysburg.
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. The Foundation raised funds for and now operates the Museum and Visitor Center at Gettysburg National Military Park, which opened in April 2008. In addition to operating the Museum and Visitor Center, the Foundation has a broad preservation mission that includes land, monument and artifact preservation and battlefield rehabilitation—all in support of the National Park Service’s goals at Gettysburg.
For information about the Foundation, about visiting Gettysburg, or how you can become a part of the history of Gettysburg through your contribution, becoming a member or volunteering, visit www.gettysburgfoundation.org or call 877-874-2478 or the administrative offices at 717-338-1243.
Battlefield Rehabilitation Continues on Gettysburg’s Cemetery Ridge
NPS, January 28, 2014 – Preparations are now underway for C.E. Williams, a contractor for the nonprofit Gettysburg Foundation, to remove the old Visitor Center parking lot on North Cemetery Ridge in Gettysburg National Military Park. Once the asphalt has been removed, the contractor will regrade the area to its historic profile in 1863, and plant meadow grasses. Historic fencing on the site will be built during the Gettysburg Foundation’s “Friends of Gettysburg” annual volunteer day in June.
Since 2009 Gettysburg NMP and the Gettysburg Foundation have been returning key portions of the center of the Union battle line on North Cemetery Ridge to their appearance at the time of the Battle of Gettysburg, 1863. Completed phases include the demolition of the old visitor center in 2009; planting 41 apple trees to reestablish the Frey orchard (North) in 2010; and demolition of the Cyclorama building in 2013.
“These rehabilitation projects allow us to place more and more puzzle pieces together on the battlefield. They improve integrity of the battlefield landscapes and improve our visitors’ understating of what happened at Gettysburg and why it’s so important,” said Zach Bolitho Acting Superintendent, Gettysburg NMP.
Through the generosity of donors, the Gettysburg Foundation is funding this phase of the project by covering the cost of general contracting, construction management and design costs which total approximately $400,000. The Foundation also funded the cost of last year’s demolition of the Cyclorama building which was $750,000.
Joanne M. Hanley, Gettysburg Foundation President, states, “The Cemetery Hill and Cemetery Ridge areas are central in Gettysburg National Military Park’s and the Gettysburg Foundation’s efforts to educate millions of visitors about the battle of Gettysburg, the causes and consequences of the American Civil War, and the lasting significance of this critical time in our nation’s history. Preservation of this site will forever enhance the interpretive value of this critical portion of the Gettysburg battlefield.”
The current phase of the project will begin in February and take approximately two to three months for completion depending on the weather.
The National Cemetery South parking lot, which used to be known as the Cyclorama parking lot will be retained for visitor use. Some modifications to this lot are planned in a future phase of this project.
Additional future phases of the rehabilitation of Cemetery Ridge include reconstructing a commemorative era pathway and moving five monuments to their historic locations. These features were altered during the construction of the Cyclorama building in the early 1960s.
New Superintendent Named at Gettysburg National Military Park and Eisenhower National Historic Site
NPS, January 2, 2014 – Ed W. Clark has been selected as the new Superintendent of Gettysburg National Military Park and Eisenhower National Historic Site, both in Gettysburg, PA. Clark has served most recently as Superintendent of Manassas National Battlefield Park.
"Ed’s deep understanding of park operations and tremendous partnership skills – as well as deep connections to the Civil War community - make him the ideal candidate to lead one of the most significant battlefields in the nation, if not the world ," noted National Park Service (NPS) Northeast Regional Director Dennis Reidenbach. “Ed’s network and skill-set will serve the park staff, community and visitors well." While at Manassas, Clark has been a Service-wide leader for the Sesquicentennial of the Civil War and the broader Civil War to Civil Rights commemorative effort. Clark has also successfully managed Manassas through some challenging projects including bringing the park's General Management Plan to conclusion and he has also worked to create a new sustainable organization during complicated political and financial times. He served as the acting Associate Regional Director for Operations for the National Capital Region of the National Park Service and the acting National Coordinator for National Heritage Areas for the Service. Prior to Manassas, he served as the Deputy Chief Ranger at Shenandoah National Park, and Supervisory Park Ranger at the Blue Ridge Parkway - among other posts. He is currently enrolled in the Senior Executive Service’s Candidate Development Program, identifying him as one of the Service's most promising senior leaders.
“I am thrilled to have been chosen as the new Superintendent of Gettysburg and Eisenhower,” noted Clark. “These landscapes are some of the most iconic in our nation’s history. I’m very proud to be joining the excellent staff and volunteers of these sites and look forward to continuing to work with the many exceptional partners, while becoming involved in the local community.”
Clark is a native of Roanoke, Virginia and holds degrees from Radford University and Ferrum College. Clark is married to wife Heidi, and they have two children, Ben and Reid. Clark replaces Superintendent Bob Kirby, who retires on January 3rd. Ed Clark will begin his new position in early February.