A few days ago I wrote a post about Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, and the historical significance that the Battle of Gettysburg played during the American Civil War. I thought I would post a photo taken just outside of Gettysburg. The, “Cashtown Inn” became the headquarters of the Confederate Army a few days before and during the Battle of Gettysburg, July 1-3, 1863. The small town of Cashtown, located approximately eight miles from Gettysburg, was transformed into a Confederate Army camp. Upon hearing that Union Army forces were heading in his direction, General Robert E. Lee, Commander of the Confederate Army, ordered his troops to gather and stay at Cashtown until the location of Union troops was better known. Lee affirmed there was to be no movement until the Confederate Army could be united.
Historical documents note a decisive move on the part of Confederate General Henry Heth. On June 30th, 1863, Confederate General James Johnston Pettigrew led his troops to the outskirts of Gettysburg in search of supplies and shoes. Spotting Union cavalrymen, Pettigrew ordered his men to retreat back to Cashtown, and reported his findings to General Heth. Despite having this extremely important information, and for reasons unbeknownst to anyone but himself, General Heth asked higher ranking General A.P. Hill if he had any objections to his moving troops into Gettysburg to search for shoes. General Hill reportedly replied, “None at all.” Heth proceeded to move the troops into Gettysburg where Union forces fired upon the Confederates. General Heth ordered his men to fire back. The Battle of Gettysburg had begun, and the fateful determination to move into Gettysburg by General Heth, notwithstanding his awareness of Union cavalrymen located close by, was decided inside the Cashtown Inn.
Many buildings were used as field hospitals during the Battle of Gettysburg; the Cashtown Inn was no exception.
Fast-forward to present, the Cashtown Inn is a lovely place to stay, with each room named after a General who stayed there during the famous battle of Gettysburg. This building (and the exterior area) has an energy of its own. Having spent several nights here, what I felt I cannot deny. Let’s just say this building is much more than bricks and mortar. If you have the opportunity to visit Gettysburg, you might want to take a short drive to the Cashtown Inn. Your mind might wander to the Summer of 1863, where the road in front of the building was not asphalt but dirt; can you hear the approaching clanging sounds of rifles slung over well-worn shoulders? Do you see the faces of young men as they parade past you, preparing to defend a cause perhaps not truly known? Here is an artist’s rendition of the event:
– photo courtesy of http://photo.accuweather.com
– photo courtesy of examiner.com
The above photo was taken in the early 1900s. I must tell you I’ve seen this actual photo. It is located with the Cashtown Inn’s photo collection. There is something unusual about this photo. I shall leave it at that for now!