A few months ago we took an extensive tour around the historic Gettysburg Battlefield in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. The Battlefield is part of the Gettysburg National Military Park. We’ve featured several articles, posts and photographs from our tour already here on our travel blog. If you’ve never visited the battlefield before, you definitely need to add it to your bucket-list. It’s an eye-opening, educational and humbling experience.
One thing that we’ve never talked about or featured in our other articles was General Meade’s Headquarters at the Leister Farm property, located on Taneytown Road at the intersection with Hunt Avenue. It’s a must-see when visiting the museum and/or battlefields.
If you want to learn about General Meade’s Headquarters at Leister Farm, we highly recommend that you visit THE BATTLE OF GETTYSBURG website online. They have a very extensive and accurate article with all of the historical facts right on their website. It’s a great read if you want to learn more.
To see it in person, you’ll find a little parking lot, pull-off spot right across the street that you can pull into and then walk across Taneytown Road to see it. You can walk right up to it and take photographs of it. It’s free to visit.
There are times during the year that they’ll open up the Leister House and a park ranger will be there to give you all kinds of history on it. During the other times of the year, you can walk onto the property and peer inside the windows.
On the day that we visited, there were two park rangers there and they gave us all kinds of great information about it. General Meade and his war staff took over the house and farm during the Civil War (briefly) and held war meetings inside the house. There is a informational board there that gives you the names of those in attendance, their rank and their importance during the war.
Along the one side of the house is a nice porch, that’s how you enter it. Once inside you’ll find two small rooms that you can tour. Once is a bedroom that is sparsely decorated and then the main living area room which has a wooden table, two chairs and a hutch. I guess this served as both the kitchen, dining and living room. There is an old fireplace in that room too.
As you walk around outside of the house you’ll see a garden area. To the back of the house you’ll see several beautiful old apple trees. As you’re standing there you can see some of the Civil War monuments and memorials out on the battlefield and there is a walking trail that runs along the side of the house that you can use to go see those.
You’ll find it on your Gettysburg Battlefield driving tour map and you can visit it at the beginning or at the end of your driving tour, since the entire driving tour forms a big winding loop. If you’re visiting the museum, you’ll find it right down the road (about a 3-4 minute drive). It’s definitely a must-see when visiting the Gettysburg Battlefield.