Just before the 160th Anniversary of the Battle of Antietam the American Battlefield Trust transferred a 7.6 acre tract to the National Park Service. Many of you know this property as the Katie Poffenberger farm which lies just opposite the Visitor Center and south of the Dunker Church. The Trust had originally purchased this property in 2016. Since that time, many of you have assisted the Save Historic Antietam Foundation (SHAF) in clearing much of the non-historic trees out of the old pasture field.
This area is critical to understanding the fighting that took place there on September 17, 1862 around mid-day as men from the Union XII Corps held the ground just west of the Dunker Church. They would be force back by Confederates from Joseph Kershaw’s Brigade and then the 27th North Carolina and 3rd Arkansas regiments attacking across this field.
On July 12, the Antietam Institute sent a $2,500 contribution to the American Battlefield Trust (ABT) specifically targeting removal of non-period structures on the Katie Poffenberger farm on the Antietam battlefield. The ABT had launched a campaign to raise funds for removal of structures from three different battlefields, one of which was this property at Antietam. The Institute’s donation was for 10% of the total cost of building removal and property reclamation for the Antietam Battlefield portion. The Finance Committee worked directly with Mr. Tom Moore, Lead Philanthropic Advisor for the ABT, who was most enthusiastic in receiving our donation. David Duncan, President of the Trust, sent a gracious letter thanking the Antietam Institute for its commitment and for working as a partner with shared preservation goals.
Even though this property belongs to the NPS, the ABT has committed to bringing it back to its wartime appearance. The removal of non-historic structures will be made possible through our donation and grants from the Maryland Heritage Areas Authority and the Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area.