• Gettysburg National Military Park


    National Military Park Pennsylvania

Gettysburg: A New Birth of Freedom June 30, 2013

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Date: June 28, 2013
Contact: Katie Lawhon, Gettysburg NMP, (717) 338-4402
Contact: Cindy Small, Gettysburg Foundation, (717) 339-2109

"…The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here…that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth." --Abraham Lincoln

Echoing President Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, "Gettysburg: A New Birth of Freedom", is the signature event for the 150th anniversary of the epic battle and defining moment of the Civil War. The free evening ceremony which includes live music, a keynote address by Pulitzer Prize winning historian Doris Kearns Goodwin, and a dramatic multi-media presentation of eyewitness accounts of the battle, will take place Sunday, June 30, 7:30-10:30 p.m., within Gettysburg National Military Park. Seating is available on the lawn north of Meade's Headquarters along Taneytown Road beginning at 5:00 p.m., as well as a large lawn area for those who want to bring blankets and lawn chairs.

The program will begin at 7:30 with music followed by the evening ceremony at 8.

The evening includes:

  • A musical prelude by the United States Army Band, known as Pershing's Own.
  • Country music artist Trace Adkins performing the National Anthem.
  • Voices of History, a dramatic reading of eyewitness accounts written by soldiers and citizens swept into the battle and its tragic aftermath, illustrated images on three stages.
  • Keynote address by Pulitzer Prize winning historian Doris Kearns Goodwin.
  • A candle-light procession to the Soldiers' National Cemetery, where luminaries will mark each of the more than 3,500 graves of soldiers killed in the battle of Gettysburg.

Charlie Gibson, former host of Good Morning America and anchor of World News with Charles Gibson,and National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis will participate as well, along with Gettysburg National Military Park Superintendent Bob Kirby and Gettysburg Foundation President Joanne Hanley. The ceremony is sponsored by Gettysburg National Military Park and the Gettysburg Foundation, with production of "Voices of History" by Rob Schlissel and Empire Entertainment, Inc.

"This commemorative event is meant to appeal to the widest possible audience in a way that honors what happened here," said Superintendent Kirby. "Soldiers and civilians in Gettysburg witnessed some of the most dramatic and horrific scenes of war. The anniversary events provide an opportunity for us to explore the struggle and sacrifice of those whose lives were forever changed by the battle."

Gettysburg National Military Park and the Gettysburg Foundation are partnering with HISTORY® to bring the live webcast of this event to audiences across the world. The program will be broadcast live Sunday, June 30 at 8 p.m. and archived for later viewing for a period of twelve months. To view Gettysburg: A New Birth of Freedom visit History.com/gettysburg150.

In addition, the following sponsors are recognized for making the 150th Commemorative Events possible: Civil War Trust, Church & Dwight Co., Inc.; Event Network; HISTORY; Verizon; EarthCam; The Hershey Company; M&T Bank; ARAMARK; The Coca-Cola Company; Giant Food Stores; Landfall Navigation; PNC Bank; RiverRun Press; Trader Joe's; Williams Sonoma, Inc.; Booz Allen Hamilton; Met-Ed A FirstEnergy Company; Aqua America; Electrosonic; Gettysburg Tour Center.

A full list of programs is available in a commemorative event guide at the Gettysburg National Military Park Museum and Visitor Center information desk, and is also available at the website at http://www.nps.gov/gett/planyourvisit/150th-anniversary-index.htm

Gettysburg National Military Park is a unit of the National Park System that preserves and protects the resources associated with the Battle of Gettysburg and the Soldiers' National Cemetery, and provides an understanding of the events that occurred there within the context of American History. Information is available at www.nps.gov/gett.

The Gettysburg Foundation is a private, 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. Information is available at www.gettysburgfoundation.org.

Did You Know?

Mary Tepe, 114th PA

"French Mary" Tepe, a vivandiere with the 114th Pennsylvania Infantry, assisted with the wounded at Gettysburg and was photographed after the battle by Mathew Brady.