Join us for what has become an annual tradition commemorating Antietam, one of the Civil War’s seminal battles. We will start with an afternoon hike that winds around Antietam National Battlefield (www.nps.gov/anti/), followed by an evening drive through the annual Memorial Illumination (www.nps.gov/anti/planyourvisit/luminary.htm). We finish the night with an optional dinner at the historic Old South Mountain Inn (www.oldsouthmountaininn.com/).
The hike is a moderately difficult 11 miles (2.5 blisters) over mixed surfaces (roads, farms, woods) and rolling hills on one of the best preserved Civil War battlefields. Shorter options are available. Highlights of the hike include Antietam National Cemetery, the Visitor Center, and Antietam Creek, as well as the Dunker Church, West Woods, Cornfield, North Woods, East Woods, Mumma Farm, Sunken Road, and Burnside Bridge—all infamous as sites of brutal fighting.
The Illumination commemorates this bloodiest single-day battle in American history with 23,000 candles representing that day's casualties. During the hike, you'll see the many volunteers preparing the candles, making the Illumination all the more moving and impressive.
After the Illumination, many of us will have dinner at the Old South Mountain Inn, which dates from colonial times. Dinner participation is limited and requires a $10/person deposit that goes toward its cost.
This is a great way to learn about Civil War history. All are welcome, including kids and leashed dogs. If you are interested, let me ([masked]) know and I will send detailed information about the meeting time and place, and the event. If you would like to be included for dinner, let me know as well.
If the Illumination is cancelled due to weather, it will be rescheduled for December 8, as will the hike. There is no guarantee of dinner reservations for the alternate date.
Pix from previous Antietam hikes/Illuminations/dinners: