Gettysburg launches Black History Trail

Jean Green, president of the Lincoln Cemetery Project Association, leads a tour of the historic Black cemetery at the unveiling of the Gettysburg Black History Trail on Wednesday.
Jean Green, president of the Lincoln Cemetery Project Association, leads a tour of the historic Black cemetery at the unveiling of the Gettysburg Black History Trail on Wednesday. photo courtesy of Destination Gettysburg photo by Mary Grace Kauffman

Community effort highlights often ‘overlooked history’

Gettysburg, Pennsylvania – June 26, 2024

The diverse people, places and stories that make up the tapestry of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania are celebrated within the new Gettysburg Black History Trail that launched June 26.

Eleven locations on the self-guided trail paint a picture of Gettysburg’s Black heritage. From museums and historic downtown sites to the hallowed ground of the battlefield, each stop on the trail illustrates a chapter in the storied past of Gettysburg’s Black community.

“To highlight this overlooked history is such a wonderful experience for the many visitors who travel to Gettysburg each year,” said Jean Green, president of the Lincoln Cemetery Project Association, one of the partners who helped shape the trail. “They will be amazed at the rich Black history that is now highlighted for them through the Black History Trail.”

Jean Green, president of the Lincoln Cemetery Project Association, leads a tour of the historic Black cemetery at the unveiling of the Gettysburg Black History Trail on Wednesday. photo courtesy of D
Jean Green, president of the Lincoln Cemetery Project Association, leads a tour of the historic Black cemetery at the unveiling of the Gettysburg Black History Trail on Wednesday. photo courtesy of Destination Gettysburg photo by Mary Grace Kauffman

Guided by a digital trail on their mobile devices, users can walk in the footsteps of local historical figures. Basil Biggs, Abraham Brian, Jack and Julia Hopkins, Margaret Palm and Thaddeus Stevens are among the legacies honored in this collaborative community effort.

The Gettysburg Black History Trail locations are:

    • Abraham Brian Farm, Hancock Avenue, Gettysburg National Military Park
    • Gettysburg Beyond the Battle Museum, 625 Biglerville Road
    • Gettysburg Lincoln Railroad Station: Ticket to the Past – Unforgettable Journeys,35 Carlisle St.
    • Gettysburg National Military Park Museum & Visitor Center, 1195 Baltimore Pike
    • Gettysburg National Cemetery, 97 Taneytown Road, Gettysburg National Military Park
    • The Jack & Julia Hopkins House, 219 South Washington St.
    • Lincoln Cemetery, intersection of Lincoln and Long lanes
    • Seminary Ridge Museum and Education Center, 111 Seminary Ridge
    • St. Paul AME Zion Church, 269 South Washington St.
    • Thad’s Place: Home of the Thaddeus Stevens Museum, 46 Chambersburg St.,
    • James Warfield House, 60-114 Millerstown Road, Gettysburg National Military Park
Wayne Motts, president emeritus and historian of the Gettysburg Foundation, delivers remarks at the Gettysburg Black History Trail unveiling Wednesday at Lincoln Cemetery. Behind him, from left to right, are Lincoln Cemetery Project Association President Jean Green, Destination Gettysburg Director of Partnership Amy Welsh and Gettysburg Mayor Rita C. Frealing.
Wayne Motts, president emeritus and historian of the Gettysburg Foundation, delivers remarks at the Gettysburg Black History Trail unveiling Wednesday at Lincoln Cemetery. Behind him, from left to right, are Lincoln Cemetery Project Association President Jean Green, Destination Gettysburg Director of Partnership Amy Welsh and Gettysburg Mayor Rita C. Frealing. photo courtesy of Destination Gettysburg photo by Mary Grace Kauffman

The Gettysburg Black History Trail is the result of a partnership among Adams County Historical Society, Destination Gettysburg, Gettysburg Black History Museum, Gettysburg Foundation, Gettysburg National Military Park, Lincoln Cemetery Project Association, Seminary Ridge Historic Preservation Foundation, and Thaddeus Stevens Society.

“We are pleased to partner with so many community organizations to bring to life this great educational initiative,” said Wayne E. Motts, president emeritus and historian of the Gettysburg Foundation. “After years of work and thought by many individuals and groups, the Gettysburg Black History Trail is available for visitors around the world to experience on a digital platform.”

The trail guide can be found on Destination Gettysburg’s digital platform alongside its Pour Tour and Crop Hop trails. Users can sign up for their free digital passport at BlackHistoryTrail.com.

“The epic battle that took place here represented a fight for freedom,” Destination Gettysburg President and CEO Karl Pietrzak said. “The experiences and contributions of the Black community are an integral part of Gettysburg’s story, and our hope is that the Gettysburg Black History Trail amplifies that message.”

Jean Green, president of the Lincoln Cemetery Project Association, delivers remarks at the Gettysburg Black History Trail unveiling Wednesday at Lincoln Cemetery. Behind her, from left to right, are Wayne Motts, president emeritus and historian of the Gettysburg Foundation; Destination Gettysburg Director of Partnership Amy Welsh and Gettysburg Mayor Rita C. Frealing.
Jean Green, president of the Lincoln Cemetery Project Association, delivers remarks at the Gettysburg Black History Trail unveiling Wednesday at Lincoln Cemetery. Behind her, from left to right, are Wayne Motts, president emeritus and historian of the Gettysburg Foundation; Destination Gettysburg Director of Partnership Amy Welsh and Gettysburg Mayor Rita C. Frealing. photo courtesy of Destination Gettysburg photo by Mary Grace Kauffman

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