Skip to main content

Civil War Trust

Visit the Historic Civil War Antietam Battlefield –

As far as the worst days of the Civil War, the Antietam battlefield saw the single bloodiest day in the history of the U.S. military on September 17, 1862. Miller’s Cornfield in Sharpsburg, Maryland was witness to the clash between Union Major General George B. McClellan and Confederate Maj. Gen. Robert E. Lee, which resulted in some 23,000 casualties.

After the battle of Antietam, facts show that though McClellan’s larger force struggled in the face of attacks from the famous Gen. “Stonewall” Jackson, Lee was eventually forced to withdraw across the Potomac in defeat, ending his invasion of the North. However, President Abraham Lincoln was frustrated at McClellan’s timidity during this Civil War battle and after, as he was unwilling to pursue and cripple the defeated Army of Northern Virginia.

As is clear from the Battle of Antietam summary, this Civil War battlefield is an important part of United States history and the results of the fighting on the Antietam battlefield were an important part of the slow-turning tide in the war. The Antietam National Battlefield park has preserved a great deal of the battlefield, and offers several different opportunities to learn about the battle and honor those who fell. Many visitors suggest that just being there one can feel the lingering spirits of those who fought valiantly for their country and beliefs.

The National Park Service manages the park, the visitor center, the Pry House Field Hospital Museum, and the adjoining Antietam National Cemetery. The cemetery houses Union soldiers from the Civil War, as well as U.S. soldiers from the Spanish-American War, both World Wars, and the Korean War. The visitor center offers exhibits about the Battle of Antietam, while the Field Hospital Museum focuses on battlefield medical care from the war. Along with documentaries about the battle, tours of the extensive battlefield and several preserved monuments are available, offering visitors a number of avenues to connect with this historic battle. 

Our Sponsors

Powered by Blackbaud
nonprofit software