The creaking of the wheels, the smell of sweaty leather harnesses, the rumble of horse drawn vehicles, and the tramp of perspiring men through clouds of dust comprised some of the sights, sounds and smells in the Maryland countryside in September 1862 as the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia brought the war to the north and the Union Army of the Potomac pursued the invader. The two armies – approximately 125,00 men in all – met in battle on South Mountain, Antietam Creek, and Harpers Ferry. They all had their memories and stories, and so did the farmers and citizens of the small towns in their paths. On Monday, August 26, John Schilt and Laura Marfut will share some of those experiences captured in the second edition of John’s book, Roads to Antietam.
Laura Marfut is a retired U.S. Army colonel with 32 years of service, including 12 years on the Joint Staff and two tours in Afghanistan. She taught high school in Washington County, Maryland and served as President of the Mason-Dixon Council, Boy Scouts of America. Laura became an Antietam Battlefield Guide in 2019, adding Harpers Ferry and South Mountain credentials the following year. She volunteers for Hospice and as an Antietam Battlefield Ambassador. She and her husband Ed live in Hagerstown, Maryland.
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.
Come join leading historians and scholars as they discuss intriguing topics about their latest works and research on the Maryland Campaign and the Civil War during our Civil War Summer Lecture Series.
These indoors programs are sponsored by the Jacob Rohrbach Inn and will be held in McKinley Hall at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church on Monday evenings at 7:00 p.m. The church is located at 209W Main Street with a small parking area off the alley. More parking is available on Main and Hall Streets. These lectures free and open to the public. Each week we hold a drawing in which the proceeds support the Save Historic Antietam Foundation. Be sure to check our Facebook page for updates and changes to the schedule.