Gettysburg Foundation Response Regarding the House Passage of HR-7608
Our mission as a 501(c)(3) non-profit philanthropic, educational organization is to operate in partnership with the National Park Service (NPS) to preserve Gettysburg National Military Park and Eisenhower National Historic Site, and to educate the public about their significance.
According to our Articles of Incorporation, it is unlawful for Gettysburg Foundation to lobby for or against local, state, or national legislation; however, as an educational organization, we are committed to share information that may impact our mission.
Recent House legislation (HR-7608) is a bill that, if passed, mandates that within six months, NPS “shall remove from display all physical Confederate commemorative works, such as statues, monuments, sculptures, memorials, and plaques, as defined by NPS, Management Policies 2006, §9.6.1” (Sec 442).
The passing of this bill would have significant impacts to our educational mission. We are continuously monitoring its progress and encourage you to do the same—and take action—as you deem appropriate.
Collectively, these monuments provide insight into and education about the history of this decisive battle and its still-contested popular memory. Of the 1,328 monuments and markers on the Gettysburg battlefield, approximately 350 are specifically Confederate. The NPS is currently working on efforts to provide greater contextualization of these monuments and markers for the visiting public.
As is its policy, the NPS does not comment on pending legislation.
Thank you for your steadfast support for this hallowed and increasingly relevant ground.
August 13, 2020