Exploring Gettysburg

This morning I felt like I took a step back into my mother’s childhood in Gettysburg. Though I’ve visited the town where my parents grew up a handful of times, most visits have been during the holidays and centered around Thanksgiving dinner or fun times at my grandmother’s house.

It was such a treat to spend a few hours late this morning walking around downtown Gettysburg with my mom and listening to her stories.

Perhaps my favorite stop of the day was our first stop at the church where my parents got married in 1977.

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It is such a gorgeous church both outside and inside.

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My parents had a candlelight service and I loved picturing them on their wedding day. The church reminded me a lot of the church in Love Actually and even had a little balcony toward the back of the church. I was tempted to run upstairs and start singing “All You Need Is Love” like the fabulous choir did in the movie.

We then drove to downtown Gettysburg, parked the car and had fun popping in and out of the shops around the square.

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My grandpa’s old office was located on the second story of the Adams County National Bank building pictured above.

We got a little turned around as we were walking around, but thankfully Abraham Lincoln was there to direct us around the square.

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We knew Honest Abe couldn’t give us the wrong directions.

The shops in downtown Gettysburg and along Steinwehr Avenue were filled with fun trinkets, decorations and souvenirs.

Check out The Little Mermaid and Harry Potter nesting dolls!

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Ariel has some funky tan lines.

My mom and I had a good time guessing what the smallest doll nested inside of the bigger dolls would be.

Whoever thought Hagrid should be painted on the smallest Harry Potter doll must not have seen the movies or read the books because I’m pretty sure Hagrid is a borderline sasquatch.

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The cards in some of the shops kept us amused with their funny sayings and one-liners.

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And for those of you out there with kids who are just beginning to enter the dating world, perhaps this courting candle might intrigue you?

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According to folklore, a young woman’s suitor had to leave when a candle held in the above chamber burned down to the metal. Her father could turn the wooden peg to adjust the candle height, depending on his approval of the suitor, giving him more or less time with his daughter.

We popped into Kilwin’s for some fudge before checking out a few more stops and taking an ice cream break!

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We arrived at Mr. G’s as the shop was opening and had the best time talking with Mr. G about this history surrounding the historic house where his ice cream shop is located.

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My mom and I split a cup of his homemade pumpkin and butter pecan ice cream and couldn’t stop raving about the creaminess of the ice cream. It was delicious and well worth a stop!

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We ate our ice cream on the patio outside and Mr. G pointed out the bullet holes that were left by union soldiers during the Civil War that remain in his building today.

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I’m so glad we had the chance to speak with him because we would’ve walked right by the bullet holes without even noticing them. Gettysburg is filled with such rich history and it seems like everywhere you go a story is waiting to be told.

Now we’re back at my grandma’s house and she’s just waking up from a nap, so it’s time to grab some lunch and head back out! I’m trying to soak in as much family time as I can before heading back to Ocala tomorrow.

Comments

  1. says

    That sounds like such a beautiful little town, I LOVE historical places. It was such a treat to live in Charleston for 4 years, the whole place was history! And that ice cream definitely looks amazing! Haha and I love that Hagrid was the tiniest, very ironically fitting.

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  2. says

    What an awesome trip! I visited Gettysburg when I was in 8th grade and had an amazing time. So much history and so many stories. I remember my history teacher telling me that if we looked out in some of the fields at night, we could see lights that were supposedly the ghosts of soldiers who had lost their lives throughout the war. I did see a couple of lights, but what really got me when I was there was just a certain “feeling” that I got. It was a great experience!! Also, I think it is so cool that you got to visit the church your parents were married at :) I hope you enjoy the rest of your mini family reunion!

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  3. says

    What a neat little town! If you don’t mind my asking, how did your parents get from Pennsylvania to Florida? As someone who has lived in pretty much the same place her entire life, I’m always interested in how and why other people make big moves!

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  4. Sarah @RomneyRyan2012 says

    There should be an Abe Lincoln in each town- especially to help with directions. But I doubt my dad would even ask Lincoln-my dad’s one of those men who just never ask for directions. Ugh.Oh, and I LOVE history and am so blessed to live in richly historic area!
    p.s.- I love you’re mom’s top! Where did she get it? She’s so pretty :)

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  5. Melissa says

    My parents actually met on a tour of Gettysburg battlefield’ though they were both living in DC at the time! I have been there several time and it is really strange seeing you go to places I have been! I love all the wall hangings with silly/ romantic/friendly quotes on them in the stores!

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  6. Lisa says

    I’m not sure i have ever left a comment, but one of my husbands best friends met his wife who is from Adams County, and they were married in the same church as your parents 4 years ago.
    We live around Harrisburg, (the state capital)
    Enjoy the rest of your trip north and the fall temperatures :)

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  7. Katie says

    I love all the pictures!

    I live in the DC area and I absolutely love to visit Gettysburg. It’s such a cool little town and yet filled with so much history.

    -Katie

    (P.S. It was George Washington who “couldn’t tell a lie.” Not to nit pick, but I thought you should know!) :-)

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  8. Holly says

    Hi Julie!!

    I’ve been a reader of your blog for years and I’ve read your previous posts about visiting Gettysburg and your grandparents in the past and always have been meaning to leave a comment. I grew up in Gettysburg and now live in Fairfield, PA which is just a few minutes outside of Gettysburg. I’ve always loved Gettysburg and was just at Mr. G’s this weekend and had the pumpkin ice cream too! Sooo yummy!!
    Also – I read your previous post about Hauser Estate Winery – that’s where my husband proposed to me two years ago :) I love this area and always run the battlefield! You’ll have to let me know if you ever come back to visit, I’d love to meet up some time!! Always been a big fan of your blog. Thanks for sharing Julie!!

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  9. says

    I had no idea there was so much other than the battlefield in Gettysburg, now I want to visit. I grew up in an old historical town and love love love and miss that atmosphere!

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  10. says

    I love seeing pictures of my hometown! I’m glad you enjoyed gettysburg and come back often.

    Also isn’t Mr. G’s the best!? their coconut ice cream is literally to die for. I have to get it every once in while! Enjoy your family time!

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  11. says

    Hi Julie! I’ve been reading for a long time (and won the Oreck vacuum giveaway earlier this year!! That vacuum is AMAZING, by the way.) but haven’t really commented. I just wanted to let you know that I love the way to approach healthy living and am always inspired by you! I actually just started my own blog (3 days ago!) and definitely credit healthy living bloggers like yourself. If you have a moment, I’d be so excited if you stopped by said hello!

    And that ice cream looks delicious!! I wish I had some now. :)

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  12. says

    Gettysburg looks like such a cool city! I need to go sometime! I love how historical cities always have the coolest stories.
    Kilwin’s makes the BEST fudge. There’s one not far from my college and on nice days they leave the doors open and let the delicious smells waft down the streets. They’re so mean (:

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  13. Sheila says

    So cool to hear about your family history in Gettysburg! I decided on a whim to sign me and my boyfriend up for a 5k that the Gettysburg- area YMCA hosts this summer and I’m so glad we did! The race, if you’re ever in the area June-ish, is a loop through the battlefield! Very tough (and very hot) but an overall fantastic experience! Next year we’re making a whole weekend out of it.

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  14. says

    I blog quite often and I really appreciate your information.
    This article has truly peaked my interest. I am going to bookmark your blog and keep checking for new information about once a week.
    I subscribed to your RSS feed as well.

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