• Gettysburg National Military Park

    Gettysburg

    National Military Park Pennsylvania

Adopt A Position Program

Susquehanna University group at work, 2012
Volunteers from Susquehanna University clear brush from a trail near Big Round Top, Spring 2012.
(Angel DeJesus, Gettysburg NMP)
 

General Information and Guidelines

The purpose of the Adopt-A-Position (AAP) program is to engage volunteers in helping to meet goals as established by the Gettysburg National Military Park (GNMP) to maintain the historic setting of the battlefield. Volunteers (VIPs) help us by performing field maintenance and labor that otherwise would not be completed due to budget and/or staffing restraints.

VIPs donate time and labor in preserving regimental positions, battery locations, or brigade lines. In most cases, regimental or battery positions will include a monument. Monuments like any historical feature on the battlefield have additional contributing elements. The elements include the foundation mounds (an important structural element of most of the regimental monuments) surrounding grounds, adjacent fences or walls, earthworks, any trails or walks to the sites, and may include the pasture in which the monument stands. All of these areas are important to the monument and the positions held by the Union or Confederate troops during the battle. The park will provide site assessments to outline the maintenance needs of each site.

Check below for the Fall 2014 Adopt A Position Schedule!

SITE ASSESSMENTS

Volunteer Work May Include:

  • Applying topsoil, seed and straw (materials provided by park) to eroded monument mounds.
  • Raking and spreading grass seed on bare areas (monument mounds, turf areas, etc.).
  • Raking leaves.
  • Clearing brush from fences, stone walls, structures, and fortifications.
  • Re-stacking stone fences; fence restoration.
  • Building and repair fences.
  • Painting fences (paint and supplies will be provided).
  • Clearing pastures of weed growth and exotic shrubbery such as multi-flora rose and Japanese barberry.
  • Painting artillery carriages.
  • Planting seedlings.
  • Repairing and/or maintaining trails.
  • Collecting litter.

Guidelines:

VIPs cannot work directly on a monument due to strict National Park Service technical standards designed for the protection of the physical condition of each monument.

Monument sites can receive treatments varying from general spruce up to labor-intensive landscape work. The park also has "orphan" positions available that include historic stonewalls and/or sections of fences or trails not identified with any particular military unit.

Volunteers will not use chainsaws. Park provided hand tools are limited.

To Adopt A Position:

Individuals or groups interested in the AAP program should contact Amanda Whitmore, the Adopt a Position Coordinator, at (717) 338-4479. A two-year commitment is required of volunteers to work a minimum of one day each during the spring and fall program. The individual or contact representative for a group will arrange a date two weeks before the time that a work party will be at the adopted site and provide the necessary support equipment to accomplish the goals for the site. All work at the project site must be pre-arranged with the AAP Coordinator. The address for the coordinator is:

Amanda Whitmore
Adopt A Position Coordinator
Gettysburg National Military Park
405 Taneytown Road
Gettysburg, PA 17325
(717) 338-4479
e-mail us


 
MD SCV project 2013
The Maryland Chapter of the Sons of Confederate Veterans clear brush on Benner's Hill, Spring 2013.
(Amanda Whitmore, National Park Service)
 

THE FALL 2014 ADOPT A POSITION SCHEDULE

The Fall of 2014 Adopt a Position Program will run from August 31 through November 15, 2014. Contact program coordinator Amanda Whitmore at (717) 338-4479 or e-mail us to arrange for your group's work day. There will be no work performed on Federal holidays or on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Please remember to schedule your work dates two weeks in advance and do not work at your site without contacting the program coordinator.

Volunteer Agreements:

In the past we have required that each group or individual renew their commitment to the AAP program by signing a volunteer agreement every two years. The current agreements will be good for a minimum of two years and will renew automatically unless either the group or individuals involved in the program or the National Park Service cancel the agreement. The contact person for any group who wishes to terminate their agreement should contact the park AAP coordinator. If we do not have your current address, please contact the AAP coordinator with your new contact information.

Progress Report:

During the 2012-2013 season, the AAP volunteers helped the Gettysburg National Military Park (GNMP) by working around 267 monuments which included raking leaves, planting grass seed to help with erosion control, and cutting back vegetation. Additionally, volunteer groups cleared tree branches and leaf debris from the north and south cemetery parking lot areas, picked up trash debris along Chambersburg Pike, painted fences near the Klingel house, and rebuilt fence near the Trostle Barn. Volunteers helped clear vegetation from over 14,700 feet of fencing, repair approximately 2,600 feet of fence, and rebuild approximately 5,687 feet of fence. The AAP program had over 1,200 volunteers who helped us to complete a total of 5,273 hours of work in and around the Gettysburg battlefield and the Eisenhower National Historic Site. Many of our great volunteers went the extra mile and helped us with work that was outside of their normal assigned areas

Without our volunteers this work would not have been accomplished. We here at Gettysburg National Military Park would like to sincerely thank each and every one of you for your participation in the program and for helping us to preserve and maintain the battlefield at Gettysburg. There are still several sites throughout the park that are waiting to be adopted and could use your talented caring hands and watchful eye to help give these areas that extra touch while you enjoy a great day in the park!

Visit our Multimedia page for samples of projects performed by volunteer groups throughout the park in 2012-13! !

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