Yesterday, the 150th observance of the Battle of Antietam ended with our weekend observance of the issuance of the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation.
The entire week was a spectacular success. The weather was ideal and the visitation was astronomical. The numbers are still being crunched, but my on-the-ground estimate is between 40-60,000 visitors.
The high points for me were the two weeks just prior as I prepared my small contributions to the effort. As the tempo increased so too did the anticipation. Everybody pulled together as we all realized that we'd only have one chance to get it right. The second, and best, of those two high points found me and eight of my friends and colleagues in the Cornfield at 6:30 a.m. in the fog and smoke from distant batteries and musketry as we read, to and audience of 600 early-risers, quotes from men who had participated in the Cornfield fight. It was very evocative and I will remember it as one of the most worthwhile things I've ever done in my career as an educator.
It all went so remarkably perfect.
And now, to rest.
Flopped on my couch, just north of Boonsboro,