Spring Into History April 2020

Spring Into History April 2020

Franklin County has more than 300 years of American History. Take a moment and look back throughout history and browse the Spring into History web page. Check out the timeline. Explore a critical period of American history through the lens of Franklin County.

  • Underground Railroad of Franklin County
  • Franklin County as John Brown’s northern headquarters
  • America’s Civil War comes to Franklin County.

Discover more about Franklin County’s chapters of American history. Peruse the Spring into History booklet online and step back to a time when natives roamed the land of current Franklin County hunting and foraging. Take a virtual visit to sites of famous forts, a presidential birthplace, and a community devasted by Civil War retaliation.

Check out the Spring into History Cryptogram puzzle below. Answer on Wednesday with another Spring into History puzzle.

Spring into History Crytogram April 13

 

Dykeman Spring & Park

Dykeman Spring & Park

Dykeman Spring is the centerpiece of the 56-acre Dykeman Park in Shippensburg. Another water feature of the park is Dykeman Pond, which sits in front of an Italian-style manor house. The original Dykeman Manor House was constructed in 1855 and in 1871, altered to an Italianate style with distinct geometric features like the six-foot square cupola. Next to the pond is a limestone hatch house,constructed in 1871 and used when the site was a trout hatchery.

The early inhabitants of the area were the Delaware Indians, around 1730. Drawn to the waters of the Indian Head Spring, the natives built small dwellings around the spring. Later, the spring attracted nearly 20,000 Confederate soldiers, who camped at the site in late June 1863. These troops headed east to the Battle of Gettysburg and clashed with Union troops. More than one-third of the men perished.

In 1999, the Dykeman Spring was recognized on the National Register of Historic Places.

 Dykeman Pond Coloring Page

Dolly Harris Memorial Dedication Set For November 2

Dolly Harris Memorial Dedication Set For November 2

A special memorial dedication at Cedar Grove Cemetery for Civil War heroine Frances “Dolly” Harris Lesher is set for Saturday, November 2, the 174th anniversary of her birth. The ceremony will begin at 1 PM at the cemetery located at 130 North Franklin Street. The public is invited to attend the dedication.

During the Invasion of PA in June 1863 that initiated the Gettysburg Campaign, Confederate soldiers marched through Greencastle on Carlisle Street, past Dolly’s home at 37 North Carlisle Street.  Col. William Roane (A-let) Aylett, of Pickett’s division and great-grandson of patriot Patrick Henry, said, “Why the bravest woman I ever saw was a Pennsylvania “girl” who defied Pickett’s “WHOLE” division as we marched through the little town called Greencastle.  She had a United States flag as an apron which she defiantly waved up and down as our columns passed by her and dared us to take it from her.”  She called them traitors and scoundrels. Under the circumstances of an affidavit, Private John T. Boyd Sr., CO K, 57th Regiment VA Vol.  said, under oath, quote “as to her wearing a badge I remember she wore one and think it was a Lincoln badge. As Gen. Armistead passed by, she waved the stars and stripes at him and he saluted her.”

Dolly is the only woman from Franklin County who is considered to be a Civil War heroine and was the only woman buried with military honors upon her death in February 1906. For no known reason, a headstone was never erected on Dolly’s resting place in the Cedar Grove Cemetery, Chambersburg, PA. The generosity of Dr. Paul Orange funded the cost of the obelisk headstone to be placed on her gravesite.

Descendants of Frances “Dolly” Harris and her husband John Lesher, from VA, TN, FL, and MO, will be in attendance at the November 2 dedication.

 

Monterey Pass Battlefield Hosts Campfire Pork Roast

Monterey Pass Battlefield Hosts Campfire Pork Roast

Monterey Pass Battlefield, is hosting a campfire pork roast on June 29, 11 AM to 5 PM. All the trimmings will be served with the roast plus corn soup and beans cooked in kettles over the campfire. Beverages include lemonade and iced tea.

Throughout the 125-acre site will include living history portrayers, speaking during the day. Geo caches will be placed on the walking trails. Period artisans will be displaying their wares., including soap and honey.
Tickets to enjoy the whole day at the site are $20. Take-out meals are $15. Monterey Pass includes the battlefield, museum, and walking trails with interpretive signage. The battlefield is the site of the second largest confrontation in Pennsylvania, fought as part of the retreat from Gettysburg in the late hours of July 4 and early hours of July 5.

The Monterey Pass Battlefield Park is a 125-acre natural, cultural and historical park, located along PA Route 16. The park includes Rolando Woods, Happel’s Meadow Wetlands, and Monterey Pass Museum. The history of the area dates back to 1747, when immigrants looking for a new life traveled through the area to Appalachia on the Great Wagon Road. Discover more on June 29.

Battle of Monterey Pass

Battle of Monterey Pass

Fought during the retreat of Gettysburg, the Battle of Monterey Pass is the second largest Civil War battle fought on Pennsylvania soil with 10,000 from both Union and Confederate forces. The fight took place in the late hours of July 4, 1863 and the early hours of July 5, 1863 during solid darkness and a torrential downpour on a precarious mountainside, spanning two states and four counties.

After the Confederate defeat at Gettysburg, General Robert E. Lee was faced with returning troops, supplies, artillery, wagons, and wounded across South Mountain to Virginia. From July 3 to July 6, the retreating Confederate troops moved across South Mountain. There were two routes the Confederate army took.  One was along the Chambersburg Pike to Cashtown, onto Greenwood—today known as Fayetteville—and south to Hagerstown. A shorter route traveled winding mountain roads through Fairfield Gap and across Monterey Pass to Hagerstown.

A twenty-mile train of Conestoga-style wagons retreated on the longer route through Cashtown and was led by Brigadier General John Imboden. With so much rain, there was much mud. The multitude and weight of the wagons made an arduous and long retreat.

The exodus via the shorter route through Fairfield Gap and across Monterey Pass did not escape the terrible impacts of the rain. Men marched on flooded roads and thick mud. In many Confederate soldier’s diaries and letters, it was referred to as Mount Misery or the quagmire. The conditions made night travel even more dangerous because visibility was so limited.

On July 4, Union troops led by General Judson Kirkpatrick removed the Confederate sentries at Fairfield and were able to advance toward Monterey Pass. Brigadier General George Custer charged the Confederates with the 6th Michigan Cavalry, allowing Kilpatrick’s men to reach and attack the wagon train. Ultimately, the Union forces captured more than 1300 Confederate men and destroyed nine miles of wagons.

Today, the site of the battle is along PA Route 16, just east of Waynesboro. The battlefield land is preserved by the local municipality, Washington Township, and houses the Monterey Pass Battlefield Museum, open weekends from April to November. The museum interprets Civil War history, depicts details of the Battle of Monterey Pass, and portrays the historical significance of the region.