Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Welcome back, gunner!

The Artillerist on the 4th New York Independent Battery monument [Captain James E. Smith] located on the south end of Houck’s Ridge [behind Devil’s Den] has been restored and is now standing as a silent sentinel over the area once again. For those who drive through Devils Den area, and then up and around to where Benning’s Brigade of Georgians assaulted the left of Ward’s Third Corps Brigade, the cannon and the Artillerist are well remembered figures that greet you when you reach the top of the ridge.

Damaged several years ago in an ugly attack of vandalism early one morning, the statue was pulled off its pedestal and the head was removed and carried off. Two other monuments, both along Emmitsburg Road, were also damaged. The 114th Pennsylvania Infantry monument [Collis’s Zouaves], was also toppled, but was restored fairly quickly. The 16th Massachusetts Infantry monument also had damage when the ball on top was pulled free and smashed on the ground.

All were members of the Third Corps [Dan Sickles], and were involved in the fighting on the second day, when Sickles, without orders to do so, ordered his corps out of a defensive position just north of Little Round Top, and forward to the Emmitsburg Road. He left Ward’s Brigade and Smith’s Battery to cover his left by stationing them on the south end of Houck’s Ridge. Sickles covered some of the gap between Ward and Graham’s Brigade, stationed in the Peach Orchard a half mile, away by aligning some artillery on the Wheatfield Lane facing south. Sickles move remains a bone of contention to this day, and his actions then, and for the rest of his life, seriously damaged the career and reputation of General George Meade.

The fight of Ward’s Brigade and Smith’s Battery against several assaults by brigades and regiments from the Confederate Army division under General John Bell Hood is legendary. Smith, in particular, fought his battery well, splitting off one section of two guns onto the floor of the “Valley of Death” where they stopped advancing Alabama troops by firing into the boulder field of the “Slaughter Pen”. The other four guns remained on top of Houck’s ridge where they supported Ward’s infantry brigade aligned on the right of the battery.

Park restoration specialists had to travel out west to cast the head for the Artillerist from another copy of the statue.

Welcome back, gunner!

GettysBLOG

We support the Roadmap to Reform!

“Be steadfast in your anger, be sure in your convictions, be moved by the right and certainty that abuse of power must be defeated at every turn; uphold Liberty as the just reward of a watchful people, and let not those who have infringed upon that Liberty steal it away from you. Never loosen your grip on Liberty!" -- GettysBLOG

“Legislation without representation is tyranny.” -- GettysBLOG

Remember in May and November! Before you vote, GettysBLOG!

Copyright © 2005-2012: GettysBLOG; All Rights Reserved.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Veterans Day

In 1918, on the eleventh day of the eleventh month, at the eleventh hour, a pre-arranged cease fire ended the hostilities between the Allies [The United Kingdom, France, The Russian Empire, the Japanese Empire, Italy, Belgium, Montenegro, Greece, Serbia, and the United States] and the Central Powers [the German Empire, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, The Ottoman Empire, and the Kingdom of Bulgaria]. Thus ended "The Great War"..."The War to end all wars".

A year later, President Woodrow Wilson declared that date to be a holiday set aside for the solemn remembrance of the many dead from World War I. It was to be known as Armistice Day, to note the date that Germany signed the Armistice that ended the war.

Thanks to a small grass-roots movement centered in Emporia, Kansas in 1953, Congress passed a law establishing the date with a new name, Veterans Day, to honor all of America's Veterans from all eras. President Eisenhower signed it into law and it became law on June 1, 1954. With the exception of a few years in the 1970s, Veterans Day has been and always will be observed on November 11th, every year.

This year, as in so many other years, we are saddened by still another war ongoing, keeping our brave warriors far from their homes and hearths, in constant danger so that we may live in Freedom, Liberty, and Peace at home.

We ask that you pray for them, and for all Veterans, living and dead, who did their duty.

One of the more familiar pieces about Veterans was written by Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, a Canadian physician serving in France during the War, after witnessing the death of his friend, 22 year old Lieutenant Alexis Helmer. Written in 1915, and published four years later as a small collection of his poems, In Flanders Fields is one of the most poignant remembrances of the price of war, and is applicable to all wars.

In Flanders Fields

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.


We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flanders fields.


Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Remember our Veterans today, Veterans Day 2011. If you see some, thank them for their service.

GettysBLOG

We support the Roadmap to Reform!

“Be steadfast in your anger, be sure in your convictions, be moved by the right and certainty that abuse of power must be defeated at every turn; uphold Liberty as the just reward of a watchful people, and let not those who have infringed upon that Liberty steal it away from you. Never loosen your grip on Liberty!" -- GettysBLOG

“Legislation without representation is tyranny.” -- GettysBLOG

Remember in May and November! Before you vote, GettysBLOG!

Copyright © 2005-2011: GettysBLOG; All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Way to Go Adams Voters! Good Work!

Congratulations to the voters of the Gettysburg Area, for electing the second new school board in the past five years. Let’s hope this one is the right one. The last one was a tax and spend abysmal failure. If spending doesn’t get deeply cut, there will be new faces after the next election. But the folks we elected seem to have their eyes on the spending ball.

And the County Commissioners race got two right. We would have preferred Paul Kellett to Marty Qually, but we also think Qually will do a good job balancing the two Republicans.

Huge congratulations to Paul Martin, a really legitimate “good guy”, and to one of our favorites, Randy Phiel, another legitimate “good guy”.

In Cumberland Township, we eliminated Deb Golden. Perhaps the vendetta against the Paddock family will come to an end now. And the new Supervisors should put an end to the ridiculous spending by the previous Board of Supervisors. The Board of Supervisors has complained about all the tax free land in the township and the untaxable income from retirees. Nevertheless, they failed to learn to live within their means. We hope the new board retires that million dollar loan, and makes other cuts. Less work on the Township property and more on the roads puts tax money where it belongs.

All in all, a successful election. Our hopes are high that local government will make drastic cuts in spending and ease the burdens of the taxpayers.

GettysBLOG

We support the Roadmap to Reform!

“Be steadfast in your anger, be sure in your convictions, be moved by the right and certainty that abuse of power must be defeated at every turn; uphold Liberty as the just reward of a watchful people, and let not those who have infringed upon that Liberty steal it away from you. Never loosen your grip on Liberty!" -- GettysBLOG

“Legislation without representation is tyranny.” -- GettysBLOG

Remember in May and November! Before you vote, GettysBLOG!

Copyright © 2005-2011: GettysBLOG; All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, November 06, 2011

GettysBLOG endorsements for Tuesday's election!

Well, it’s time again for Remember in November!

We’re back with out endorsements for some of the more important races in Adams County.

We’ll start with the County Commissioners. Some good folks here. We recommend the following:

Randy Phiel. Randy is a long time resident of the area, a retired Federal Law Enforcement Officer, and a man active in his community for many years. Randy is solid, and did a fine job as a Supervisor in Cumberland Township where they could use five of him to staff the board.

Paul Kellet is a man for the people. His lawsuit against the current County Commissioners was for the people, to rein in the “wretched excesses” visited on the public of Adams County by the outgoing [thankfully] board of commissioners.

Jim Martin is simply too good a man to pass up. You have to vote for a guy who devotes his life to service, both public and private.

For commissioner, then, we endorse, Randy Phiel, Paul Kellett, and Jim Martin.

For the school board. This is easy. Do not vote for the one incumbent who is running. That is Sally Michael. The incoming school board should be completely new faces. Therefore, we endorse William Hewitt, Denise Weldon-Siviy, Katherine Hewitt, Kristin Woodward, and Jim Henderson.

In Cumberland Township, vote for anyone except Deb Golden. IT is time for new blood here. The same old excuses for higher taxes, the same old excuses for not having enough money. They need to look at how much money they have spent on their own property, which has become a small kingdom for the Supervisors, and a large sandbox for the men who run the heavy equipment. Most days, and especially in the winter, they violate their own noise ordinance. In the winter, they start their equipment at 6:30-6:54 in the morning so the equipment will be nice and warm by the time they finish their coffee and donuts inside the building. Now there’s a place to start to cut costs and save some taxpayer money.

And in the Borough…in the First Ward, we recommend against the ex reporter who is running for office there. He got too much enjoyment out of running a local official out of town, and got in too deep with Levan and his motorcycle heavies. Not the kind of person you want sitting in borough council meetings on your behalf.

We used to think that the voters get what they deserve. That was na├»ve. We have seen too many “good people” change their spots once they get elected. This is why we have the recommendations against in some cases. At least in those case we have a negative record to go by.

Our hopes are high. The Commissioners will all be new regardless of who gets elected. The school board will be new if the voters are careful not to vote for Sally Michael. Five new people are required to undo all that the past two school boards have done.

Good luck at the polls. Don’t stay home and let others vote when you have the right, and the duty to vote. As much as these elected officials in Adams County have come under fire the past several years, you have the obligation to vote to make sure no bozos get elected.

Vote on Tuesday, November 8!!

GettysBLOG
 
We support the Roadmap to Reform! “Be steadfast in your anger, be sure in your convictions, be moved by the right and certainty that abuse of power must be defeated at every turn; uphold Liberty as the just reward of a watchful people, and let not those who have infringed upon that Liberty steal it away from you. Never loosen your grip on Liberty!" -- GettysBLOG  

“Legislation without representation is tyranny.” -- GettysBLOG

Remember in May and November! Before you vote, GettysBLOG! Copyright © 2005-2011: GettysBLOG; All Rights Reserved.

Friday, September 23, 2011

We're Back! Latest on Battlefield, Casino, and an Apology

We must apologize to our very valued readers around the world for our lengthy absence. Ill health and other personal issues have diverted us from keeping you up to date. We appreciate those so loyal that they patiently stayed with us during the hiatus. We thank you all.

First, the Battlefield has never looked better, from an historian's eye. The restoration to 1863 conditions continues, with work currently going on at newly-acquired Powers Hill. The elevation, one of the higher ones in the area located just west of Baltimore Street and north of Blacksmith Shop Road. It was used as an artillery platform during the Battle, with coverage of the lower slope of Culp's Hill, and the Spangler's Spring area.

The recently planted orchards are starting to take hold and show signs of growth. Some of the first planted have actually blossomed.

The Friends continue to build worm fences throughout the Battlefield. We are anxious to see the placement of field dividers in the Pickett's Charge area.

The final work on the Middle Street project [for this year -- more due next year but less disruptive] has pretty much ended and with the paving of the crossing of Seminary/West Confederate Avenue the job has finished nicely.

The only stinkers in the area are the continuing work on the Marsh Creek Bridge on Emmitsburg Road south of the Battlefield, and the "traffic islands" installed along Steinwehr Avenue, especially at Baltimore Street. What were they thinking?

Be aware also that the National Park Service is working to solve a problem of foot-traffic erosion in some of the more popular locations on the Battlefield. Nowhere is it more evident than on Little Round Top. NPS has attempted to control where visitors go on the hill with paths, chained off areas, and signs, all to no avail.

The casino issue was beaten back again earlier this year when the last remaining license was awarded to the Nemacolin Resort out in southwestern Pennsylvania. The majority partner in the Mason Dixon project decided to file a court appeal to that decision. The local backer, David LeVan, stated he wanted no part of the appeal and has filed to sever himself and his financial backers from the Mason Dixon project so they can work toward getting a casino here.

So, how can this be?

Well, the State Treasurer recently presented a report prepared by a casino industry marketing firm to the State Gambling Commission [sorry, we refuse to call it 'Gaming'. That is a purely contrived euphemism to make gambling more palatable to Pennsylvania taxpayers.]

In that report, he indicated that revenues from the current casinos, which have been increasing by double-digit percentage points every month, will soon decline to single-digit increases and eventually would plateau. There are options. One is to increase the number of slots and tables at each casino, but the saturation point of warm bodies walking in the casinos' doors has almost been reached, so increasing the number of machines and tables would not significantly raise revenues. Adding casinos would.

In that report, he also detailed six target locations, including Chambersburg and southern York County as potentially rich target areas for a new casino, and four other locations around the state. This, then is the other option: Chambersburg and York, and there are four options to this solution of adding more casinos.

1. Build a casino in each -- one in Southern York County, and one in Chambersburg.

2. Build a casino in either Southern York County or Chambersburg.

3. Build no casinos in either place.

4. Build a casino geographically in between Chambersburg and Southern York County. Obviously, this would target Gettysburg.

That final option is the reason for David LeVan's recent maneuverings. There is some talk of resurrecting the idea of building a harness racing track near Littlestown and pursuing a license for a casino at that new racetrack. This would likely involve the legendary harness racing stables of Hanover Shoe Farms, located in that area. This is a smoke screen. No doubt LeVan has some other location, as yet unpublicized, in mind, perhaps even the original planned site just east of the York Street/US 15 interchange, but we suspect a spot along US 30 west of town, perhaps near the local airport.

As Susan Starr Paddock, the head of the twice victorious No Casino Gettysburg, so appropriately warned in the local newspapers, the ugly head of a casino near the Battlefield is still with us. There is a bill in the General Assembly that would prevent a casino license being awarded to a location within 10 miles of the Gettysburg National Military Park. We would ask Pennsylvania residents who read this to please contact their General Assembly representative and ask him to support this bill.

We urge our readers, regardless of their location, to visit the No Casino Gettysburg Network site and do all you can to help this issue out.

http://nocasinogettysburg.ning.com/

Gettysburg deserves better than this. There are some things in our society, in our history that rise above money. The Gettysburg Battlefield and the physical context in which that jewel of National Parks sits, is one of those things. Almost 200,000 soldiers fought here on those three days in 1863. Fully one quarter of that number were casualties - dead, wounded, missing, or captured. The significance of the Battle fought here is too important to who the American People are, and what America means, to allow a gambling establishment to tarnish that importance because of money, and the stubborn greed of one man.

GettysBLOG

We support the Roadmap to Reform!

“Be steadfast in your anger, be sure in your convictions, be moved by the right and certainty that abuse of power must be defeated at every turn; uphold Liberty as the just reward of a watchful people, and let not those who have infringed upon that Liberty steal it away from you. Never loosen your grip on Liberty!" -- GettysBLOG

“Legislation without representation is tyranny.” -- GettysBLOG

Remember in May and November! Before you vote, GettysBLOG!!!!

Copyright © 2005-2011: GettysBLOG; All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, September 01, 2011

GETTYSBLOG WILL RETURN SOON THIS BLOG IS NOT FOR SALE.

This blog is not for sale. We are on medical hiatus and will return shortly.

GettysBLOG We support the Roadmap to Reform! “Be steadfast in your anger, be sure in your convictions, be moved by the right and certainty that abuse of power must be defeated at every turn; uphold Liberty as the just reward of a watchful people, and let not those who have infringed upon that Liberty steal it away from you. Never loosen your grip on Liberty!" -- GettysBLOG “Legislation without representation is tyranny.” -- GettysBLOG Remember in May and November! Before you vote, GettysBLOG! Copyright © 2005-2011: GettysBLOG; All Rights Reserved.