Friday, May 7, 2010

Our Trip to Fort Sanders

Our group from church minus adults and my little guy

Abraham Lincoln reciting The Gettysburg Address

Confederate soldier showing us his pack

Southern Lady
Union soldier explaining the fort

Yesterday I took our kids to Fort Sanders for a field trip. It was in an open field with a recreated version of the fort. It was a very warm day, but not unbearable. We got the opportunity to listen to a confederate soldier and to approach the fort as they did when the original battle took place. He explained, as we approached, at what point we began taking hits from cannons, then a little closer and we would have had to climb over sharpened twigs and branches then at what point they would have begun tripping over wires and taking fire from the union guns. As we approached the fort we were told that the confederates thought the ditch in front was only three feet deep, only to find out once they got there it was about 6-8 ft. deep. Once they entered the ditch they either had to make an impossible climb up the wall or on up the other side which was about 21-27 ft. high with the union army at the top. It was basically suicide for the confederates. An amazing sight to see in person and to walk through.

We also listened to the union commander and soldiers talk about their part in the battle, and some interesting facts about what they had to eat and how they set up camp as they moved about and so forth. We met a southern lady and she explained the clothing she wore and all the layers and why and showed us a few games from that time period. We listened to another soldier as he told us about ammunition and guns of the time. Then at the end we were led back to the fort where we watched a cannon blast listened to Abraham Lincoln recite the Gettysburg Address. Afterwards we had a picnic lunch then headed home.

It was a great day. I was amazed, later at home as I questioned the kids on what they remembered and what was their favorite part, as to how much they learned and remembered about our trip. Even the little guys remembered quite a bit. I learned a lot too. It was an interesting day for everyone.

If you are interested in learning more about Fort Sanders you can visit their website at They will be doing a battle reenactment in October of this year, I'm planning to try to go.

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