Scouting Activities in Historic Gettysburg
Gettysburg Heritage Trail
There is a five part patch that the youth and adults can earn when they visit Gettysburg National Military Park. The program is administered by our local council, York Adams Area Council. The patch consists of five parts: The head of Lincoln, with Gettysburg written beneath it, is earned by visiting the visitors center and electric map. There are then two trails - one confederate (Johnny Reb), one union (Billy Yank), which make up two more parts of the patch. The last two parts of the patch was added after the initial trail was created. One is five white horizontal stars in a red field. This section is earned by visiting the Eisenhower Farm. The part most recently added is The Historic Gettysburg Trail, which is a walk through the downtown area to help visitors imagine what it was like to live in Gettysburg in July 1863. For complete information on which trails to hike, visit the Visitors Center and purchase the Gettysburg Heritage Trail guide book that tells you which trails to hike and how to get the patches after you complete the requirements.
More info is available on the New Birth of Freedom Council's website at - http://newbirthoffreedom.org/programs/gettysburg-historic-trails/.
You cannot complete the entire patch in one weekend, but you can complete a significant number of the parts. If you only have a weekend, it's best to focus on completing some of the segments, and possibly returning for a second trip to complete the rest. Reading the Trail Guide will help you decide which you want to complete. One important note is that the Billy Yank part is a nine mile hike, which will take an entire day. If you are coming when your scouts have off school, I would recommend that you try to make it a long weekend trip, or even go for four full days. If you are coming around the time of the battle, you can check into the reenactment, but beware of some high prices.
The Gettysburg National Military Park is at www.nps.gov/gett
The Eisenhower National Historic Site is at www.nps.gov/eise