Mar 8



The Old (current) Guide Room at the Gettysburg National Military Park Visitor Center. The room is under the overhang on the north side of the Electric Map Visitor Center. The red sign is where the Eisenhower Shuttle Bus waits for visitors, and the blue sign is where Gettysburg Battlefield Tour Busses pick up customers. This view is from the northwest facing southeast at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008.

On a slow,foggy and rainy Saturday, the Gettysburg Daily was granted the privilege of visiting the inner sanctum of Gettysburg Battlefield knowledge– the Licensed Battlefield Guide Room. These are the final weeks of the guide room and its home in the Electric Map Visitor Center. The space currently contains more items than can be moved into the new visitor center guide room, and other locations for these items are being pursued. We are proud to do our part in documenting “the final days.”



Old Guide Room overhang and entrance. The splotches are raindrops, which allowed this guide to take photographs instead of going out on a tour. View is from the northwest facing southeast at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



Old Guide Room overhang and entrance. The orange chain on the ground is used to block access to the steps on icy days in order to save guides from themselves. View is from the northeast facing southwest at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



Guide Room Window on the north side of the building. Visitors frequently take a look inside to watch the guides at work talking with each other. View is from the northeast facing southwest at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



Some of the items in the Guide Room Window. Guiding at Gettysburg is known as “the peculiar institution,” and the non-food items shown all have their own special meanings. View is from the northeast facing southwest at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



Notice the ample representation of squirrels, elves, and gnomes. Pirate fans among the guides are many. Their wins are few. View is from the northeast facing southwest at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



Guide Entrance Doors. There are three signs on the doors telling visitors that this is not the Visitor Center entrance, but more than a few visitors do not read signs, and attempt to come in anyway. View is from the north facing south at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



The guide room actually consists of three areas, the hallway (shown here), a front room and a back room. When one enters the front doors, as in this picture, the front room is out of sight, immediately to the left of this view. In the foreground on the west wall are cabinets with maps and other historical information. Bookcases are in the back. View is from the northeast facing southwest at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



The hallway showing the east wall with its coatrack and mailboxes for each guide. Water bottles are on the floor in the back of this picture. View is from the northwest facing southeast at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



Entering the front room on a rainy Saturday, one sees guides very patiently waiting for their tours. From left: Ted Gajewski, Dave Eisenhart, Wayne Motts, and Charlie Fennell. View is from the northwest facing southeast at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



The front room looking towards the parking lot. From left: Ted Gajewski (in front of the water fountain), Paul Marhevka (in the area of the sink, coffee cups, coffee pot, and microwave), Dave Eisenhart, Wayne Motts, and Charlie Fennell. View is from the southwest facing northeast at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



The front room from the window. From left: Charlie Fennell, Wayne Motts, Dave Eisnhart, David Gutknecht (under the bulletin board) and Ted Gajewski. View is from the northeast facing southwest at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



Dave Eisenhart (left) and Charlie Fennell in the front room near the refrigerator and snack machines on the east wall. The clock was anxiously looked at over the years as guides hurriedly ate lunch before their tours, or worried if they were going to get out at all. The TV and VCR (are you kidding, what’s a DVD player?) if on at all, were usually on only during the slow winter months because otherwise we found ourselves to be extremely entertaining. View is from the northwest facing southeast at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



In the front room Charlie Fennell guards the food usually left on the table. On the south wall behind him are battle maps for the first, second and third days. View is from the north facing south at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



A closeup of the battle maps. On the calendars shown we kept track of random (not reserved) tours each day on the winter schedule. This system was setup by Captain Dave Weaver, our Licensed Battlefield Guide now stationed in Iraq with the United States Army. View is from the southwest facing northeast at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



Doctors Denny Forwood and David Gutknecht excitedly sit in front of the bulletin board on the west wall of the front room. The telephone was our lifeline to the visitor center desk by which we anxiously awaited calls informing us that we had tours. View is from the east facing west at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



The late and learned Battlefield Guide Jack Wise constructed this board on the front room north wall (above the water fountain) holding the tags of guides who wanted to be in “the morning draw.” White tags represented full time guides. Red tags represented weekend guides. Blue tags represented part-time guides, and green tags represented seasonal guides. This high tech system had guides putting their tag in a coffee can each morning before 7:55 AM. The tags were to be shaken and stirred. The first tag drawn out of the can belonged to the first guide going out with a visitor. The second tag to the second guide, etc… Before the tags and can, guides were randomly chosen by dealing playing cards. The new computer system currently performs the random selection of guides each morning. View is from the south facing north at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



Guides’ view of the world (or at least the Electric Map Visitor Center Parking Lot) from the front room. The scenery was frequently blocked by the Eisenhower Shuttle Bus in front of the window. View is from the south facing north at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



The back room where the studious guides, such as Ed Guy (shown here) wait for their tours. View is from the hallway facing east at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



The back room. Home to some of the guide library. View is from the northeast facing southwest at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



The back room looking to the hallway. The copier is on the right (north) wall. View is from the east facing west at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



The hallway looking to the entrance doors and the Electric Map Parking Lot. The back room is out of sight to the immediate right in this picture. View is from the south facing north at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



Bookshelves on the west wall of the hallway. View is from the east facing west at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008



The hallway looking to the entrance doors and the Electric Map Parking Lot. The mailboxes are on the east wall. View is from the south facing north at approximately 9:00 AM on Saturday, March 8, 2008


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