About the Antietam Institute

Founded in 2021, the Antietam Institute is a member-based educational and philanthropic 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with a mission to study, collect, publish and teach about the Battle of Antietam and the Maryland Campaign of 1862.

Through membership dues and donations the Institute also financially supports the Antietam National Battlefield, other nearby sites, and other organizations doing good work related to the Battle.

Objectives of the Institute

  • Promote and support new historical research into the Battle of Antietam and the 1862 Maryland Campaign
  • Publish a bi-annual journal and other publications related to the Campaign
  • Host annual seminars, conferences, and educational programs
  • Provide a curated repository to disseminate historical information related to the 1862 Maryland Campaign
  • Support and promote community activities that provide education about the Campaign
  • Promote the preservation of historic property
  • Support other groups and non-profit organizations with related goals
  • Support Antietam National Battlefield and other local battlefield sites related to the 1862 Maryland Campaign
  • Be fiscally responsible so that the Institute can continue to successfully pursue its purpose and functions

Board of Directors

Each of the Officers and Directors of the Antietam Institute is an unpaid volunteer with a proven commitment to the cause. They are elected to two year terms. Here are the current Board:

Board of Directors at the Fall Conference, Oct. 2021

Christopher Vincent | President

Christopher Vincent retired after a 24-year career in the Army as a senior non-commissioned officer with light infantry units including combat tours during Operation Desert Storm and Kosovo. Chris earned a master’s degree in Military History from the American Military University. As part of the Sharpsburg community, Chris is the president of the Sharpsburg Historical Society, chair of the Washington County Antietam Battlefield Advisory Board, and is on the Sharpsburg Planning Commission. Chris was drawn to Sharpsburg because his great-great-grandfather served during the Maryland Campaign with the 132nd Pennsylvania Volunteer infantry Regiment. He and his wife Amy also own two businesses in Sharpsburg. His research is primarily focused on the farmsteads of Antietam and the impact the campaign had on the civilians of Sharpsburg. Chris serves as Chief of the Antietam Battlefield Guides and is a certified guide at Antietam National Battlefield and Harpers Ferry National Historical Park.

James Rosebrock | Vice President

James Rosebrock is a retired Army officer and Department of Justice employee, with 45 years of leadership experience in the logistics, security and emergency management fields.  Jim graduated from Niagara University in 1976 with a degree in Russian History.  Jim served with the 82nd Airborne Division during Operation Urgent Fury in Grenada. He is a graduate of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College and the Industrial College of the Armed Forces where he was awarded a master’s degree in National Resource Strategy.  Jim was an instructor for Combined Arms and Services Staff School when he retired with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. He is a National Park Service certified battlefield guide at Antietam National Battlefield and served as Chief Guide from 2011 – 2018.  He has two Civil War related blogs and is currently writing a book on the U.S. regular artillery during the Maryland Campaign.  

Miriam Cunningham | Treasurer

Miriam Cunningham spent two decades working with nonprofits and think tanks in Washington, DC, including the American Historical Association and John Hopkins’s Center for Transatlantic Relations. Her portfolio included program management, grant administration, and donor relations. She holds a BA in Modern European History from the University of Kentucky and a MA in Modern European History with an emphasis on the Weimar Republic and Inter-war period from the American University. Originally from Louisville, KY, Miriam fell in love with living in Washington, DC, before moving to Sharpsburg to own and run the Inn at Antietam with her husband. She also sits on boards of the Sharpsburg Historical Society and the Maryland Bed and Breakfast Association. Now, she’s turned her historical interests to the Civil War and the experiences of soldiers and the community during the Battle of Antietam.

Jim Smith | Secretary

A native of Miami, Florida, Jim began volunteering at Antietam in 2017 and became a certified battlefield guide in 2018. Jim wrote several chapters for Brigades of Antietam and is a regular contributor to the Antietam Journal. He has an MA in history from the University of Georgia and undergraduate and law degrees from Duke University. A corporate lawyer for more than 25 years in the Washington, DC area, he has been with Hilton since 2011. Jim and his family live in Anne Arundel County, Maryland.

Matthew Borders | Director

A graduate of Michigan State and Eastern Michigan University, Mathew Borders holds a BA in United States History with a focus in the American Civil War and a MS in Historic Preservation. Following graduation, he taught at Kalamazoo Valley Community College before excepting a position with the National Park Service’s American Battlefield Protection Program. He worked as the historian for the ABPP for six years, during which time he became a certified battlefield guide at Antietam National Battlefield. In 2019, Matthew was honored to be the recipient of the Save Historic Antietam Foundation’s prestigious Dr. Joseph Harsh Award for his research topic, The Loudoun Valley Campaign of 1862: McClellan’s Final Advance. Currently Mathew is a park ranger at Monocacy National Battlefield in Frederick, Maryland. He along with fellow guide Joe Stahl, have published Faces of Union Soldiers at Antietam, as well as Faces of Union Soldiers at South Mountain and Harpers Ferry.  

James Buchanan | Communication & Information Management Chair

A fourth generation Washingtonian, Jim grew up spending many hours playing with friends on the earthworks of Fort [Benjamin “Grimes”] Davis in his Southeast D.C. neighborhood. He graduated from the city’s public schools, and earned a BA and an MA in history at the University of Maryland, College Park. With a teacher’s certificate, he returned to the D.C. schools to teach social studies. He eventually signed on for 11 years as an associate editor on a Supreme Court history project. That led him to a national organization where he developed law-related education curriculum for high school teachers. Then in 1992, he joined the Federal Judicial Center where he worked until retirement in 2017. Currently, he is a volunteer and certified guide at Antietam National Battlefield.

Lucas Cade | Director

A native of Georgia, Lucas grew up in the Atlanta suburbs and developed an early interest in the Civil War. He received a Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education/Social Sciences from Troy State University and a Master of Science in Economic Development from the University of Southern Mississippi. He moved to Washington County, Maryland and began a 30-year career in business development in the electric utility industry, first with Allegheny Power and most recently FirstEnergy. Lucas has been a long-time advocate of battlefield preservation, and has been active in the American Battlefield Trust and its predecessors for over two decades. He is both a volunteer and a certified guide at Antietam National Battlefield. Lucas lives in Hagerstown with his wife, Julie.

Brian Downey | Director

Brian Downey is a retired information technology manager from Washington, DC now living in Northeast Florida, which is entirely too far from the Battlefield. He is a Cold War era US Navy veteran and former Maryland Terrapin. A life-long student of the Maryland Campaign of 1862, he is the developer and author of the Antietam on the Web site and blogger on behind AotW, sharing his passion for the battle of Antietam online since 1996.

Brad Gottfried | Programs Chair

After earning a PhD in Zoology, Brad Gottfried went on to a 40-year career in higher education, first as a faculty member, administrator, and finally as college president. After 17 years as college president at two colleges, Brad retired in 2017 and moved to Pennsylvania becoming an Antietam Certified Battlefield Guide in 2019. In addition to being a battlefield guide, Brad teaches an online course at Montgomery County Community College and is active with nonprofits. He has written 14 books on the Civil War including six map studies (including The Maps of Antietam), four battlefield studies, and two brigade-level histories. Three additional books will be published in 2021: Lee Invade the North: A Comparison of Robert E. Lee’s Two InvasionsThe Brigades of Antietam (editor), and Lincoln Comes to Gettysburg: The Story of the Formation and Consecration of the Gettysburg National Cemetery. Brad is married and lives in Fayetteville, Pennsylvania.

Laura Marfut | Membership Chair

Laura Marfut retired as a colonel in the U.S. Army with 32 years of service, including 12 years on the Pentagon Joint Staff and two tours in Afghanistan. She graduated from the U.S. Army War College with a master’s degree in Strategic Studies, and also holds master’s degrees in both International Relations and Education. After retirement, she developed the curriculum and taught the Homeland Security program at South Hagerstown High in Washington County, Maryland. Laura was certified as an Antietam National Battlefield Guide in 2019, fulfilling a long-term bucket list goal. She added Harpers Ferry and South Mountain credentials the following year. Laura served as President of the Mason-Dixon Council, Boy Scouts of America. She volunteers with Hospice of Washington County and as an Antietam Battlefield Ambassador. Laura and her husband, Ed, live in Hagerstown, Maryland.

Michael McCartney | Finance Chair

Captain Michael A. McCartney hails from Cleveland, Ohio, received a degree in Chemistry from the United States Naval Academy and earned a master’s degree in International Relations and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College. Captain McCartney’s sea duty assignments spanned eight ships including command of USS SALVOR (ARS 52) and USS CHUNG-HOON (DDG 93) and as Reactor Officer aboard USS NIMITZ. From 2013 to 2016, he commanded USS ANTIETAM (CG 54) homeported in Yokosuka, Japan. He finished his 31 year career in 2021 as the Surface Warfare Deputy for Weapons and Sensors on the Navy Staff in the Pentagon. Captain McCartney earned various awards including the Pacific Fleet VADM Stockdale Leadership Award in 2010. Captain McCartney forged a strong connection between his ANTIETAM Crew and the NPS team at the Antietam Battlefield; conducting battlefield visits, remembrance ceremonies, battlefield displays and lectures all with the goal of instilling the historical battlefield lessons of leadership and courage within his crew. 

Tom McMillan | Director

Tom McMillan has spent a lifetime in sports media and communications – including 25 years as VP of Communications of the Pittsburgh Penguins of the NHL – but his heartfelt passion is history. The author of four books on American history, he has served on the board of trustees of Pittsburgh’s Heinz History Center, the board of directors of the Friends of Flight 93 National Memorial, the marketing committee of the Gettysburg Foundation, and as a docent at the Thomas Espy GAR Post in Carnegie, PA.. Tom and his wife, Colleen, are also volunteer ambassadors at Antietam. A former newspaper sports writer and radio talk-show host who has covered the Olympics, the Super Bowl, the Stanley Cup Finals and the NCAA Final Four, he earned a journalism degree from Point Park University in Pittsburgh.

Kevin Pawlak | Publications Chair

Kevin Pawlak is a Historic Site Manager for Prince William County’s Historic Presentation Division and serves as a certified Battlefield guide at Antietam National Battlefield and Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. He graduated from Shepherd University in 2014, majoring in History with a concentration in Civil War and 19th Century America and minoring in Historic Preservation. Kevin regularly contributes to the Emerging Civil War online blog. He is the author or co-author of three books on the Maryland campaign, including To Hazard All: A Guide to the Maryland Campaign, 1862.

Gary Rohrer | Logistics Chair

Gary is a native and lifelong resident of Washington County. After serving in the Navy during the Vietnam era, Gary earned a BSCE from the University of Maryland and later earned an MBA from Frostburg State University. He became a Registered Professional Engineer and enjoyed a 35-year career in Public Works engineering. His passion for the 1862 Maryland Campaign was sparked by his Boy Scout years camping and hiking the fields of Antietam, South Mountain and Harpers Ferry during the Civil War Centennial and countless visits to Gettysburg. Gary’s thirst for Civil War history grew upon retirement as he became an Antietam volunteer and an NPS Certified Antietam, South Mountain, and Harper’s Ferry Battlefield guide. Gary has toured numerous Civil War battlefields and sites throughout the U.S. and also made extensive tours of both WWI and WWII battlefields across Europe. He is married and resides near Boonsboro, MD.

John Schildt | Director

Reverend John Schildt graduated from Shepherd College, Wesley Theological Seminary and has studied at Western Maryland College, Gettysburg Seminary and West Virginia University. John’s first book, September Echoes, published in 1960, was the first on Antietam since Francis Palfrey in 1887.  This led to an appointment to the Maryland Centennial Committee. He wrote the account of the battle for the Official Centennial Program and was the guest speaker for the 125h anniversary.  John has been a lecturer and guide for several Civil War organizations, Round Tables, and many other groups. John led his first tour of Antietam in 1958. Since then, 2,000 additional tours have followed.  John has written over thirty-five books relating the various aspects of the Maryland Campaign of 1862 and local history. This list includes Drums along the Antietam, Roads to Antietam, Four Days in October, Islands of Mercy, and Roads to Gettysburg. He and his wife and daughter live in Sharpsburg.