Summer at Spangler Farm

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The George Spangler Farm Becomes a Classroom for Local Students

May 13, 2021

Historic Gettysburg-Adams County (HGAC) hosted an educational event at the historic George Spangler Farm & Field Hospital, bringing together building trades students from Adams County Technical Institute and multimedia students from Gettysburg Area High School.

“This event was a great opportunity for the Gettysburg Foundation to partner with HGAC and their Investing-In-Youth Initiative,” said Spangler Farm Site Coordinator Paul Semanek. “The George Spangler Farm is not only an ideal location to learn about history, but also to learn and see traditional building techniques,” added Semanek.

During the event, Adams County Technical Institute students learned about the preservation process from HGAC barn preservation specialist David Mclay and Warehaus architectural practice lead Erin Himmelberger.

Warehaus had partnered with the Gettysburg Foundation in the award-winning preservation, restoration and rehabilitation efforts of the George Spangler barn, summer kitchen, smokehouse and farmhouse from 2010-2019.

While trades students learned preservation techniques and participated in some hands-on construction of a scaled-down barn structure, Gettysburg High School multimedia students filmed the process under the direction of instructor Kasey Smith. The footage collected during the event will be used as part of an upcoming three-part program.

With preservation and education at the heart of the Gettysburg Foundation’s mission, Semanek sees the opportunity for more community and student-based events at Spangler. “We’re already planning on future cooperative programs,” said Semanek. 








The Foundation will comply with any state-mandated COVID procedures

The Gettysburg Foundation opens the farmstead to visitors on weekends (Fri-Sun) throughout the summer. 

They also open during the anniversary days of the battle, so this year that period is July 1-4.






2021 Spangler Farm News

Readers may remember that in 2019 HGAC had forged a partnership with the Gettysburg Foundation on a number of initiatives scheduled in 2020.  Of course, the pandemic prevented these programs from happening.  But we are pleased to announce that this valuable partnership is back in action and our “Summer at Spangler” program will participate in the Foundation’s Spangler Farm summer schedule in 2021! 

The Foundation opens the Farm to the public every June through August on weekends.  Every weekend features different reenactors or living historians depicting various facets of the times:  military units; medical services; civilian life during the period, etc.  The Foundation docents also address many aspects of the Farm from family history to life on a 19th Century farm to the impact of the battle on this critically placed farm.  Of course, the barn, winner of the HGAC Barn Preservation Award in 2017, is the centerpiece of the farm and various presentations take place in it.  But the overwhelming focus of the presentations is on the role of the barn and property in the weeks before and after the battle, especially its role as the 11th Corps Field Hospital.

It is this bounded view of the barn that belies its importance as a premier example of the Standard Pennsylvania Barn.  It stood there for years prior to the battle and continues to lend its majesty to the farm.  That is why representatives from HGAC and the Preservation Committee will be at the Spangler Farm every Sunday starting June 11th through Sunday, August 13th.  We will also be there for the season-opening Spangler Farm Family Day on Saturday, May 29th.  We will be addressing the barn not so much in its medical role but rather as a notable example of regional vernacular architecture in its own right.  Centered on an exhibit space under the forebay, HGAC docents will address topics such as its construction and its place in the life of a farm.  Also, tours of the barn will be conducted.

Be assured, your docents will be ready to represent HGAC to a large and diverse audience, enthralling visitors with their knowledge of our iconic Pennsylvania Barn.  They will also help cement this emerging partnership between HGAC and the Foundation with its important promise of future possibilities. 

Questions can be directed to Greg Kaufmann at or 931-217-0269.

Historic Gettysburg-Adams County, Inc.
  PO Box 4611, Gettysburg, PA 17325