Program marks Gettysburg sesquicentennial

One hundred and fifty years ago on July 1-3, American Union and Confederate armies fought each other in the largest, most deadly battle in the history of the Western Hemisphere. In recognition of this milestone anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg, three local presenters will give a program Wednesday from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Alpena County Library.

Titled “Three Perspectives on the Battle of Gettysburg Sesquicentennial,” it will feature Dr. Gregory Adamus, Dr. H. Robert Case and Don Londo.

The format of the presentation will be in five parts. Adamus will start by outlining Day 1 of the battle, followed by remarks from Londo on the Alpena/Michigan connections. Adamus will speak again on Day 2 and then Case will do a show-and-tell with his authentic weaponry. Adamus will conclude the program with an outline of Day 3. An audience question and answer period also will be held.

Londo wrote the Civil War portion and some Civil War biographies for the book “Alpena County, Michigan Sesquicentennial 1857-2007.” For more than two years he has written bi-weekly articles in The Alpena News about Alpena pioneers and their Civil War experiences.

During the past 10 years, Londo has visited almost every major Civil War battle site both in the eastern and western theatres. He has visited Gettysburg Military Park on five separate occasions and has made plans to attend the sesquicentennial reenactments.

Case is going to bring actual Civil War-era weaponry and do a show-and-tell. One will be a five-foot long muzzle loader rifle used by the infantry. The second one will be a breech-loading carbine used by the cavalry. The third will be a black-powder revolver used by officers.

Adamus was a member of the North-South Skirmishers Association, and has participated as an in-uniform demonstrator at many Civil War musters and reenactments. He has visited Gettysburg on five different occasions.

Adamus and his wife first visited Gettysburg in 2009, intending to stay overnight.

“We ended up hiking the entire battlefield for four revealing days,” Adamus said. “Because of the uniquely pristine preservation of the battlefield into the present, historians have combed over every last yard of its story. It’s often joked that ‘more ink has been spilled over the Gettysburg battle than any other.’ Consequently, I have a collection of some three dozen book volumes written specifically on Gettysburg. My bedside reading choice for the last three years has been almost exclusively Gettysburg-related.”

Like Londo, Adamus plans to re-visit Gettysburg during the actual three days of the sesquicentennial celebration.

“There will be a full re-enactment on each of the three days,” he said. “This unique event promises to be the largest re-enactment of any battle of any war in all of world history.”

He plans to bring back lots of photos to later share with the local public during a follow-up photologue presentation sometime in August or September.

Wednesday’s presentation will be held in the library’s conference room, located on the second floor of the library. For more information, call the library at 356-6188.