At 7 AM on September 17, 1862, General John Bell Hood’s Division emerges from its bivouac in the woods near the Dunker Church and enters the battle of Antietam north of Sharpsburg, Maryland. Crossing the Hagerstown Pike north of the church, Hood’s small division of about 2,000 soldiers, confronts Union troops south of the “Bloody Cornfield.” In less than one-half hour, Hood’s soldiers halt the advance of the Union First Army Corps, drive them back into and through the Cornfield and pursue them beyond it northern boundary.
This 1.8 mile tour/hike covers, at a casual pace, Hood’s attack and Union resistance to it, in tactical detail. Maps and images are used to assist in the presentation of the tour.
Highlights of the tour include:
- a brief status report on the battle prior to the entry of Hood’s Division
- beginning near the Antietam Visitor Center, the route of Hood’s attack is followed from its bivouac near the Dunker Church, along the Hagerstown turnpike, through and beyond the “Bloody Cornfield” and back to the Visitor Center
- description of the fighting including accounts of units familiar to many, such as Hood’s Texans and Mississippians, the Hampton Legion and Union troops from the western “Iron Brigade” and Meade’s Pennsylvania Reserves to the gallant stand of Union gunners from the 4th & 5th U.S. Artillery
- a summation of the attack, including casualty analysis, as we return to the Visitor Center
To book this tour, contact the Antietam Visitor Center bookstore at 301-432-4329.