Oct 17

Once again, the “ball” has been returned to the top of the monument for Knap’s Pennsylvania Battery on Culp’s Hill. This view was taken facing northwest at approximately 12:00 PM on Sunday, October 16, 2011.

After another act of vandalism, the ball or sphere on top of the Culp’s Hill monument to Independent Battery E, Pennsylvania Light Artillery (Knap’s Pennsylvania Battery) has been returned. We decided to take pictures of it before it disappeared again.

The monument was dedicated on September 11, 1889. The speaker for the dedication ceremonies, the Reverand D. Nicholl, stated, “It is eminently proper therefore that upon this field should be erected monuments which shall be perpetual memorials of the patriotism and bravery of the commands participating in the battle by which the decisive victory, so far reaching in its effects, was achieved.” This image was taken facing northeast at approximately 12:00 PM on Sunday, October 16, 2011.

Of course the vandals don’t care about the story behind the monument. They just see an easy target to ruin. This view was taken facing northeast at approximately 12:00 PM on Sunday, October 16, 2011.

Recent incidents of vandalism include the fact that on Thursday evening, October 12, 2008, the ball on the top of the monument was stolen. This view was taken facing southeast at approximately 12:00 PM on Sunday, October 16, 2011.

It was replaced on July 8, 2009 at a cost of $3000. This image was taken facing southwest at approximately 12:00 PM on Sunday, October 16, 2011.

The first ball received was not a complete sphere (it was flat on the top) and had to be replaced. The image was taken facing north at approximately 12:00 PM on Sunday, October 16, 2011.

The new ball was thrown down the slope of Culp’s Hill shortly after it was installed. The photo was taken facing northwest at approximately 12:00 PM on Sunday, October 16, 2011.

So finally it has been returned to the top of the monument, and supposedly is fixed with epoxy or a similar adhesive. The photo was taken facing southwest at approximately 12:00 PM on Sunday, October 16, 2011.

There are still challenges to be met before one sees the monument looking as it did in 1889. The photo was taken facing southwest at approximately 12:00 PM on Sunday, October 16, 2011.

The bottom of the monument is still missing the Pennsylvania State Seal, and has been missing it for “years.” It’s not like the National Park Service doesn’t know what the seal looks like so that they can make another copy, and/or raise money to have another copy made. The photo was taken facing northwest at approximately 12:00 PM on Sunday, October 16, 2011.

The Pennsylvania State Seal is still on the monument to Knap’s Battery located on Powers Hill. This image was taken facing southwest at approximately 4:30 PM on Thursday, April 10, 2008.

Also, the monument to Knap’s Battery on Culp’s Hill has flank markers. Here’s the right flank marker. The battery was facing towards Benner’s Hill on July 2, 1863 and was credited with doing good work in driving the Confederate artillery from that location. But where is the left flank marker? The photo was taken facing northwest at approximately 12:00 PM on Sunday, October 16, 2011.

The last time we saw it was about three years ago discarded behind the National Park Service maintenance buildings. Nobody has made it a priority to take it to Culp’s Hill and dig a hole and place it in the ground. This view was taken facing north at approximately 8:30 AM on Sunday, November 9, 2008.

But we should be happy that the ball is back on top of the monument. The image was taken facing southeast at approximately 12:00 PM on Sunday, October 16, 2011.

If you get a chance, go see it before it disappears again. This view was taken facing southeast at approximately 12:00 PM on Sunday, October 16, 2011.
If you can find a copy, the best book on Knap’s Battery is Hurrah for the Artillery! by James P. Brady. Amazon currently has some copies. The image was taken facing north at approximately 4:00 PM on Sunday, October 16, 2011.


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