Gettysburg and July 4, 2020: Four Historians Respond

Gettysburg and July 4, 2020: Four Historians Respond

After the gathering of armed militia at Gettysburg National Military Park on July 4, 2020, JCWE editors asked four historians to respond, three of whom have especially intimate connections with the park, one of whom had expressed his outrage to us. Their responses are below in this special Muster post in response to the many events occurring during the Summer of 2020.

Scott Hancock, Gettysburg College, connects his own BLM demonstrations and reactions by often armed militia at the Gettysburg National Military Park with the lyrics of the Public Enemy’s 1990 title track in a post entitled “Fear of a Black Planet (Part I).”

Peter S. Carmichael, the Robert C. Fluhrer Professor of Civil War Studies and Director of the Civil War Institute at Gettysburg College, offers some personal reflections of as a witness to the events and as a Civil War era scholar with intimate connections to the site in “Gettysburg National Military Park and July 4, 2020: Personal Reflections.”

Jennifer M. Murray, Oklahoma State University, sheds light on the history of white supremacist gatherings at Gettysburg National Battlefield and contextualizes the July 4, 2020 armed militia event in “Ground Zero: The Gettysburg National Military Park, July 4, 2020.

Mark Grimsley, The Ohio State University, reflects on the Black Lives Matter movement and its current disruption of the white privilege embedded in the American cultural landscape in his essay titled “All the Stars Aflame.”

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