Continuing to Preserve Battlefield History for Students to Discover
School groups can walk the hallowed grounds of Gettysburg and engage in interactive history exhibits including a rare Cyclorama
The Gettysburg Foundation owns and operates the Gettysburg National Military Park Museum & Visitor Center in partnership with the National Park Service at Gettysburg. Elements of the Gettysburg Foundation’s mission include preserving the lands and buildings that hosted the Battle of Gettysburg, educating the public about the significance of Gettysburg and providing a quality, memorable visitor experience. The Gettysburg Foundation offers a unique, real-life perspective of the 1863 battle and its historical significance today. The Gettysburg National Military Park Museum & Visitor Center offers a remarkable homage to the soldiers, a nod to the civilians, and a remembrance of that time through its inspirational experiences and unique museum artifacts. Proceeds from tickets and other purchases in the Museum & Visitor Center benefit Gettysburg National Military Park and Eisenhower National Historic Site.
School Group Learning Opportunities
Educational groups will experience Gettysburg through awe-inspiring attractions and gain insight into the battle and the lessons of Gettysburg. Glimpse rare Civil War-era artifacts in the museum and immerse yourself in the authentic Battle of Gettysburg Cyclorama painting, the movie experience of yesteryear. Learners can take in the dramatic 1884 oil painting depicting Pickett’s Charge in a 360-degree panoramic immersive experience complete with sound and lighting effects. This must-see example of old-time movies shows students how this example of early entertainment survived several relocations, fires, vandalism and tears before being restored in 2008.
A new temporary exhibit in the Gettysburg Museum of the American Civil War takes students on the soldier’s journey in A Rough Coarse Life: The World of the Civil War Soldier. Witness soldiers’ accounts of surviving war through stories of struggle, historical relics, works of art, documents and other essential items.
If your group wants to tour the hallowed grounds of 1863, visitors can take a bus tour led by a Licensed Battlefield Guide from the Museum & Visitor Center. Walk the unchanged landscape where the soldiers and army leaders did centuries ago. Groups are given the convenient option of having the Licensed Battlefield Guide step on their bus to narrate the tour.
Younger tour groups and future historians are encouraged to explore Children of Gettysburg 1863®, a family-friendly interactive children’s history museum located in the historic Rupp House.
Youth and chaperones can experience hands-on history and discover scavenger hunt objects. On select dates throughout the year, visitors can interact with living historians and enjoy special programming.
If your group is looking for an immersive history lesson, visit the historic Gettysburg Lincoln Railroad StationTM and travel back to 1863 for a virtual reality trip to 19th-century Gettysburg with Ticket to the Past–Unforgettable Journeys. Gain an understanding of the urgency of war, how the station was converted into a field hospital at the early stages of battle and what made this stop a focal point of history. Students will learn about an important historic figure connected to the station during and after the battle.
Follow Cornelia Hancock, Soldier Caregiver and Hospital Heroine; Eli Blanchard, Iron Brigade Soldier, Musician and Amputation Assistant; or Basil Biggs, Gettysburg Resident and Facilitator of the Fallen in your virtual reality experience. Students will catch a glimpse of our 16th President’s arrival to the station, feel the impact of Abraham Lincoln’s iconic Gettysburg Address, and consider how it influences us today.
Start Planning Your Trip
Educational tour groups of 16 students or more receive discounted ticket prices for attractions and exhibits. The Museum & Visitor Center also offers group breakfasts, dinners and boxed meal options. Student groups in grades K-12 need to have one chaperone per every seven students.
For more information about group tours and field trips, visit the Gettysburg Foundation’s website group page and call the Guest Relations team to plan your group visit to explore Gettysburg.