Document and Inquiry-Based Virtual Field Trip Opportunities Are Now Available for Middle and High School Students.

Attention Teachers!

If you ever wanted to take your class on a field trip to Gettysburg National Military Park but cannot, for whatever reason, get here, our new Virtual Field Trip opportunities will allow your students to learn directly from primary source materials and from the fields of battle themselves. But much more than this, our new Virtual Field Trip opportunities will allow your students to choose what they would like to see and what they would like to learn, and allow them to ask whatever questions they might have. . .all from their classroom!

Your students’ virtual field trip will begin when they choose the focus question they want to investigate. Having made their selections, they will next. . .

  1. Receive a set of primary source documents that will help them develop questions they will ask a Park Ranger, and help to develop answers to their focus question;
  2. Watch a 15-minute YouTube video of the program sites as a Park Ranger investigates and helps to answer the focus question;
  3. Participate in a virtual question-and-answer session with a Park Ranger!


Once all three parts of the program are concluded, your students will have everything they need to develop and support with evidence their answer to the focus question – a skill set outlined in Common Core, National Council for the Social Studies, and other curriculum standards.


The Focus Questions from which your students can choose are as follows:
Cost of War?

Were the consequences of war, including the destruction and loss of life at Gettysburg, necessary to resolve the country’s issues?

Documents include Elizabeth Thorn account of battle and aftermath, excerpted letters from Philip Hamlin, 1st Minnesota Infantry and Sidney Carter from South Carolina, and President Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. Video includes visit to the Soldiers’ National Cemetery in Gettysburg.


The Tide of Battle?

Was one unit most crucial to Union victory on July 2, 1863 – the second day of the battle of Gettysburg?

Documents include maps of July 2 battle action for the following units: 20th Maine Infantry, 9th Massachusetts Battery, and 1st Minnesota Infantry; after-action report of Colonel Joshua Chamberlain; Minneapolis Journal article from 1895; letter to The Saint Paul Pioneer, August 186


Re-Enlist? (A Virtual Field Trip for 3rd through 6th graders)

Would you re-enlist in a Civil War army for 3 years, after serving for just 3 months and learning about the hard life of a soldier?

Documents include drills from 1861 Infantry Tactics manual, photographs of uniform pieces and equipment, and soldier accounts of camp life and battle action.




Sound Interesting?


Would You Like to Take Your Class on a Virtual Field Trip to Gettysburg?


Follow the Link Below and Reserve Your Spot via Our Google Docs Reservation Form~

Gettysburg National Military Park Virtual Field Trip


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In July, 2016, teachers from across the country spent time at Gettysburg National Military Park and Eisenhower National Historic Site’s  professional development workshop entitled: Days with Documents : Eisenhower Edition. Participants  explored key eras in Dwight Eisenhower’s life. The days focused on his time as a young army officer stationed at Gettysburg, Supreme Allied Commander, and President.  Teachers heard presentations from historians, experienced site visits to the  Eisenhower Farm and looked at primary source documents to enrich their  classroom lessons.

This page will host links to the primary source documents that the educators in attendance used, so for those who attended or were unable to attend, digital access to these documents is available here. Resources for methods for engaging students in primary sources are found at the bottom of this page. All the files have been placed in Dropbox folders and are able to be downloaded. Please comment here or on the Dropbox file itself with ideas or questions.

Click on the link below for the complete document folder in Dropbox:

Days with Documents :Eisenhower edition Complete Dropbox folder

Below is a listing of the essential Eisenhower documents found in the Dropbox folders, click on the headings to go to directly to the document folder or to find more information on selected topics.

Ike D-Day photo PRINT

Primary Source Documents : World War I & World War II

World War I

Even though Ike didn’t fight in Europe during the war, he commanded a tank training camp located in Gettysburg.

  • Two articles related to conflicts between the townspeople and soldiers of the camp.
  • Copy of the speech Ike gave to the trained “tankers” before leaving for Europe  Recruitment poster for the tank corps.


World War II

  • Ike’s messages and famous Order of the Day prior to the D-Day invasion
  • “If D-Day had failed” message he had prepared in case the invasion in 1944 failed.
  • Photo of Ike with paratroopers prior to the D-Day invasion
  • Ike’s message to General George Marshall in Washington, D.C. about the grim discovery of Nazi concentration camps
  • Photo of  Ike visiting a concentration camp.
  • Photo spread of Ike from an April, 1945 issue of Life magazine


Primary Source Documents : Eisenhower’s Presidency

Foreign Relations and the Cold War

Included in this set of documents are a collection of speeches, internal memos, telegrams, political cartoons, news accounts and photographs



U2 spy plane incident

  • Political Cartoon regarding the incident
  • State Department Press Release May 9, 1960
  • Memo of internal discussions about U2 flights February, 1960
  • Memo Authorizing U2 flights April, 1960


Relations with the U.S.S.R.

  • Joseph Stalin themed political cartoons
  • A draft of Ike’s condolence message to the Russian people upon the death of Joseph Stalin
  • Transcript of “Kitchen Debate” between Richard Nixon and Nikita Khrushchev
  • Photo of the “Kitchen Debate”
  • Document detailing the U.S. objectives for Nikita Khrushchev’s visit to Washington, D.C. in 1959



  • Time Magazine cover showing the leader of Poland Wladyslaw Gomulka
  • TASS news report on the Hungarian Revolution, 1956
  • Time magazine commentary on the lack of U.S. response to Hungarian Revolution


Domestic Issues: Civil Rights

School Desegregation and Little Rock Central High School

  • Video: NPS ranger presentation at Little Rock Central High School from Cspan
  • Text of Brown v Board of Education Rulings
  • Ike’s Executive Order directing the use of Federal Troops at Little Rock
  • Ike’s personal notes on the Little Rock Central High School situation
  • Telegram from Little Rock Nine parents to Ike
  • Telegram of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr to Ike about the events at Little Rock
  • Telegram from Arkansas Senator John Stennis to Ike describing how wrong integration is
  • Diary entry excerpt from “Warriors Don’t Cry” by Melba Pattillo Beals (one of the Little Rock Nine)
  • Political Cartoon about school segregation
  • Political Cartoon about Virginia’s resistance to school desegregation
  • Photo of the Little Rock Nine being escorted by soldiers
  • Photo of Elizabeth Eckford being verbally attacked walking to class the first day
  • Newspaper headlines declaring the end of school segregation about the Brown decision


Speeches and Laws

  • 1959 State of the Union Speech
  • Civil Rights Bill 1957 – actual document
  • Civil Rights Bill 1957 text on word document
  • Photo of Ike with African American leaders at the signing of the Civil Rights Bill 1957


Montgomery Bus Boycott

  • Rosa Parks arrest report
  • Poster announcing fundraiser for those impacted by the bus boycott


Emmett Till

  • Telegram from mother of Emmett Till to Ike asking for justice for her son
  • Frederic Morrow memo to Ike on Emmett Till response



Days with Documents :Eisenhower edition Complete Dropbox folder

Click here to see ways to use primary source documents in  lessons and activities

Professional development opportunities  for the 2016-2017  school year will be published on the Gettysburg National Military Park web site Professional Development page on August 15, 2016.