Throughout the world, Gettysburg is known for its role in the American Civil War and President Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. Far fewer know what our area was like before the battle or even further back, when the first European
settlers arrived.

The land that now comprises the center of Adams County was purchased from the Iroquois Indians by the family of William Penn in 1736. At the time there was no official Gettysburg, Adams County, state of Pennsylvania or United States. Within a few years 150 families had "leap-frogged" over the English Quakers and Germans, who had settled to the east of here, to this area, then known by the name of its main tributary, Marsh Creek. Many of these settlers were Scots-Irish who had left Northern Ireland to escape English persecution.

Information on Gettysburg

Gettysburg, home to the Battle of Gettysburg (1863) of the American Civil War, draws in large numbers of tourists every year to visit the historical sites around the small community as well as the battlefield itself. Gettysburg has many activities and tours to offer to vacationers and tourists that are interested in the Gettysburg area and the history of the community and the battle. A narrated tour via double-decker bus and tours of the Jenny Wade house are two examples. Ghost tours are also popular with tourists, profiling various locations reported to be haunted. One of the most popular times to visit Gettysburg is in the Summer and early Fall months, about June through October.

A popular attraction in Gettysburg is the reenactment of the Battle of Gettysburg which is held every summer for the three days around the Fourth of July. Events include tours, ghost stories and reenactments.

Although known primarily for its proximity to the battlefield, the Borough of 7490 residents is also known for its institutions of higher learning. The Lutheran Theological Seminary was founded in 1826 and Gettysburg College was established in 1832. Harrisburg Area Community College also has a campus just outside of Gettysburg.

Centrally located in Southern Pennsylvania, Gettysburg is 52 miles from Baltimore, 90 miles from Washington, DC, and 102 miles from Philadelphia. The main thoroughfare is US Route 30 (The Lincoln Highway) which was the first trans-continental highway.

Gettysburg Pennsylvania is a beautiful place with lots of history, but if you wanted to go more Appalachian you could visit the Hocking Hills in Ohio. The Hocking Hills are surrounded by state parks and forests. There are plenty of activities to do including: hiking, fishing, rock climbing, zip lining, horseback riding, camping, atv riding, and canoeing.  For more information on the area and where to stay, visit

A Brief History

Gettysburg was founded in 1786 and named after Samuel Gettys, an early settler and tavern owner. The confluence of six major roads of the period caused it to be attractive to travelers and settlers alike.

In 1858 the Gettysburg Railroad completed construction of a railroad line from Gettysburg to Hanover. The Gettysburg Railroad Station opened in 1859. Passenger train service to the city ended in 1942. The station was restored in 2006 and currently operates as a museum.

For three days in July of 1863, a costly battle raged between the Union and Confederate armies in and around the Borough. Over 51,000 casualties occurred during this battle. Although the Civil War continued two years following the battle at Gettysburg, the battle is viewed as the turning point of the war.

The Dobbin House Tavern, which is one of the most famous restaurants in Gettysburg, was once home to Reverend Alexander Dobbin in 1776. The restaurant has since been authentically restored and provides an ambiance that was once present during the historic days of Gettysburg. The Dobbin House is lit by candles while the wait staff serves authentic foods from two centuries ago dressed in Civil War attire. Other historical attractions are the hotels and bed and breakfasts around the borough. The Gettysburg Hotel is a popular destination for tourists because of all the history that the hotel holds. The Gettysburg Hotel is located in the heart of downtown Gettysburg, within walking distance to historical sites, restaurants and shopping. The hotel has been in business since 1797 and in 1863 witnessed events that took place during the three day battle.