Antietam National Battlefield Park
Antietam National Battlefield is a National Park
Service protected area along Antietam Creek in Sharpsburg,
Washington County, northwestern Maryland. It commemorates the
American Civil War Battle of Antietam that occurred on September 17,
The area, situated on fields among the Appalachian
foothills near the Potomac River, features the battlefield site and
visitor center, a national military cemetery, stone arch Burnside's
Bridge, and a field hospital museum. Today, over 330,000 people
visit the park each year.
In the Battle of Antietam, General Robert E.
Lee's first invasion of the North ended on this battlefield in 1862.
Established as Antietam National Battlefield Site August 30, 1890,
the park was transferred from the War Department August 10, 1933,
and redesignated November 10, 1978. Along with all historic
areas administered by the National Park Service, the battlefield was
listed on the National Register of Historic Places on October 15,
1966. Additional documentation on the site was recorded by the
National Park Service on February 27, 2009.
Antietam National Cemetery, covers 11.36 acres
and contains 5,032 interments (1,836 unidentified), adjoins the
park. Civil War interments occurred in 1862. The cemetery contains
only Union soldiers from the Civil War period. Confederate dead were
interred in the Washington Confederate Cemetery within Rosehill
Cemetery, Hagerstown, Maryland; Mt. Olivet Cemetery in Frederick,
Maryland; and Elmwood Cemetery in Shepherdstown, West Virginia.
The cemetery also contains the graves of veterans and their wives
from the Spanish-American War, World War I and II, and the Korean
War. The cemetery was closed to additional interments in 1953. Two
exceptions have been made, the first in 1978 for Congressman Goodloe
Byron and the second in 2000 for the remains of USN Fireman Patrick
Howard Roy who was killed in the attack on the USS Cole. The
Antietam National Cemetery was placed under the War Department on
July 14, 1870; it was transferred to the National Park Service
on August 10, 1933. The gatehouse at the cemetery's entrance
was the first building designed by Paul J. Pelz, later architect of
the Library of Congress
The Antietam National Battlefield Visitor Center
contains museum exhibits about the battle and the Civil War. The
movie "Antietam Visit" depicts the battle and President Abraham
Lincoln's visit to Union Commander General George B. McClellan. A
documentary about the battle is also shown. Park rangers offer
interpretive talks. An audio tour is available for purchase to
accompany the self-guided 8.5-mile driving tour of the battlefield
with eleven stops.
The Visitor Center was constructed in 1962
as part of the Mission 66 plan. It is being considered for
replacement with a visitor center that is more keeping with the
historic nature of the Battlefield.
Pry House Field Hospital Museum
The Pry House Field Hospital Museum is located in
the house that served as Union Commander General George B.
McClellan's headquarters during the battle. Exhibits focus on period
medical care of the wounded, as well as information about the Pry
House. The museum is sponsored by the National Museum of Civil War
5831 Dunker Church Road
Sharpsburg, MD 21782
Phone (301) 432-5124
Traveling East on Interstate 70:
Exit 29A onto Rt. 65
south. Ten miles south on the left is the Visitor Center.
Traveling West on Interstate 70
from the Baltimore/Washington area:
Exit 29 onto Rt. 65 South
towards Sharpsburg. Travel about 10 miles south to the Park
Visitor Center entrance which will be on your left side.
Optional Route: Exit 49 onto
Alternate Rt. 40 West towards Middletown. Continue through
Middletown, over South Mountain to Boonsboro. Turn left onto Rt.
34 to Sharpsburg. When you enter town, turn right (north) onto Rt.
65 and the Park Visitor Center will be on your right a mile north
Traveling North-South on
Exit 1, Rt. 68, six miles
east to Rt. 65. Turn RIGHT at light on Rt. 65. Five miles south on
the left is the Visitor Center.
Open All Year
Open From Memorial Day To Labor Day 8:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Open From Labor Day To Memorial Day 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas,
and New Years Day
Commemoration, Saturday of Memorial Day Weekend
Anniversary of the Battle of Antietam (Sharpsburg), September 17.
Independence Day Commemoration (Saturday closest to the 4th)
The Memorial Illumination on the 1st Saturday in December.
Did You Know?
Henry Kyd Douglas, the youngest staff officer for Gen. Thomas
"Stonewall" Jackson was a native of the Sharpsburg area.
His family home was just 4 miles west of the Battlefield. His
uniform and personal library are part of the Battlefield