Amenities: You quickly get into Civil War mode by staying at the Federal Pointe Inn, located at 75 Springs Avenue, (formerly Meade School). Upon entering our third floor room, we are greeted by two large 150th Anniversary Civil War prints hung on the walls. One depicts Pickett's suicidal Confederate charge across the wheat field (7,000 killed) on the final day of battle with Union canon and rifles relentlessly firing from higher positions. The other, surrender by weary Confederate troops.
This is a good place to stay to absorb history in Gettysburg. The old school has been restored and outfitted with quite large rooms and vaulted ceilings. One problem we encountered was dryness; hopefully they will fix the humidity situation.
We had high speed wireless internet, on-site parking, a daily newspaper, bottled water, a 32" flat-screen TV with HBO, and a Keurig coffee maker.
Bathroom: Enjoyed the granite showers and modern fittings.
Hotel Features & History: The Federal Pointe Inn offers charm and sophistication in a relaxed boutique hotel. There are 18 unique guestrooms and suites with modern amenities. A great restoration project!
Hotel Activities: Relax with a glass of wine or craft beer from the Pointe Pub.
Breakfast: Morning coffee.
Lunch: Enjoy the tea and scones from 3-4 pm.
Drinks: The Federal Pointe Pub serves a selection of gourmet treats and good old-fashioned pub favorites like the savory jumbo lump crab cake, hearty French dip, and fresh caprese salad. One can sip on a fine wine and browse the collection of class photos that adorn the former classroom walls, or get a lesson in first-rate flavors by sampling one of the 26 craft beers - Wednesday through Saturday from 4pm to 11pm in the quaint schoolhouse pub.
Service: The staff were cheerful and attentive.
Nearby Attractions: The location is a short walk to the main downtown intersection area where we found good restaurants.
Room Cost: Range: $139-$169
Room Tip or Suggestion: There's no elevator, so if you are handicapped or have difficulty with heavy bags, best stay on the first floor.
Proviso: I was a guest of The Federal Pointe Inn; however, editorial material above is solely my own and not reviewed by my host.
Abraham Lincoln and Mike Keenan
Federal Pointe Inn: A Grand Hotel
Federal Pointe Inn, an Ascend Hotel Collection Member in Gettysburg
Mike Keenan is a travel columnist for Troy Media. He produces a travel podcast -
http://whattravelwriterssay.libsyn.com/ accessible on iTunes and Stitcher Radio and has been published in every major newspaper across Canada including the Globe and Mail, Toronto Star, and Toronto Sun. He has been published in National Geographic Traveler, Buffalo Spree, Stitches, West of the City, Seniors Review and Hamilton-Burlington's View Magazine. With hundreds of reviews, photos and helpful votes, he has earned Trip Advisor's "Top Contributor Badge" and is considered an "Expert" in both Hotels and Restaurant reviews. Mike posts photos to Pinterest where he has a following of five thousand viewers.
Gettysburg by the numbers
The park is a vast battlefield of close to 24,281square km (6,000 acres). Inside, there are 371 cannons, most with original barrels, (carriages are reproductions) and 1,328 monuments, markers and memorials.
The three-day bloody battle in 1863 led to ultimate Confederate defeat in America's Civil War. (April 12, 1861 - May 9, 1865)
Most soldiers used muzzle-loading muskets with mini balls, lethal at 183 metres (200 yards) and effective at 914 metres (a thousand yards). The cavalry used smaller guns, carbines, efficient at 457 metres (500 yards). Distinguished by forest-green wool uniforms, sharpshooters equipped with 7 kg (15 lb.) rifles picked off officers such as
General Reynolds, killed on the first day and replaced by
General Abner Doubleday of baseball fame.
Each regiment employed a fife and drums corps with 50 different drum beats and commands to learn, cadences indicating orders to assemble for breakfast, retreat, move forward, etc.
In the Union army, 200,000 soldiers were under the age of 16 while 300 were not yet 13.
The Pennsylvania monument (1910) is the largest in the park. One-third of those fighting (34,900) were from Pennsylvania, with all of their names recorded.
90,000 horses were used at Gettysburg.
After the battle, the tiny town of 2,400 residents had to contend with 7,058 corpses (3,155 Union, 3,903 Confederate), another 33,264 wounded (14,529 Union, 18,735 Confederate), heaps of amputated limbs and 5,000 dead horses and mules creating a stench that permeated the area for weeks.
At Trostle's farm, artillery shell holes remain in the grain floor. This was
Dan Sickles's headquarters. In 1914, he died, 51 years after the battle, outliving all other generals. He was responsible for Gettysburg National Park in 1895, persuading Congress to pass a bill.
More than in both World Wars (405,399), 622,511 died in the American Civil War, 66% from disease and 33% from wounds. At Gettysburg, 32,000 were wounded of which, 8,000 died. 94% of the casualties were caused by bullets, less than 1% from bayonets and about 5% from cannon.