On a breezy Saturday afternoon, the Star and Banner visited one of the many important places during the battle that is not currently owned by the National Park Service. The Jacob Weikert Farm, on the Taneytown Road, east of Little Round Top, hosted over 700 wounded and dying soldiers in the barn and house. General Stephen Weed died in the house, and the bodies of artillery Lieutenant Charles Hazlett, and 140th New York Colonel Patrick O’Rorke were also brought here and laid on the front porch. Fifteen year old Gettysburg resident, Matilda Jane “Tillie” Pierce was at the farm during the battle. She provided a detailed account of the suffering here. The barn is the site of the antique shop, Tillie’s Treasures, and is open 10:00 AM- 5:00 PM on Saturdays, and 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM on Sundays.
The Jacob Weikert House. Parts of the home were first constructed in the 1700s, and the majority of the house was built around 1825. The Weikerts purchased it in 1840 from John Hoke. This view was taken from the southeast facing northwest at approximately 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 5, 2008.
The Weikert barn on the left, and the house, to the back right, just west of the Taneytown Road. Today the farm consists of 13.5 acres. At the time of the battle, the Weikerts lived here with their 13 children. The Weikerts raised animals, wheat, corn, apples, and peaches. This view was taken from the east facing west at approximately 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 5, 2008.
The Weikert barn. Although the home was officially a hospital for the Fifth Corps, wounded soldiers from the First, Second, Third, and Eleventh Corps were also brought here. On the evening of July 1st, Tillie Pierce, and Becky Weikert went to visit the barn. As Tillie wrote later in her account of the battle, “Nothing before in my experience had ever paralleled the sight we then and there beheld…” This view was taken from the east facing west at approximately 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 5, 2008.
The north side of the Weikert Barn. Tillie Pierce’s account continued, “There were the groaning and crying, the struggling and dying, crowded side by side while attendants sought to aid and relieve them as best they could.” View from the north looking south at approximately 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 5, 2008.
The west side of the Weikert Barn. After the battle, a damage claim by Jacob Weikert declared losses of 12 acres of wheat, 16 acres of meadow, 11 acres of oats, 3500 fence rails, linens, furniture, and assorted household items. This view was taken from the west facing east at approximately 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 5, 2008.
The west and south sides of the Weikert Barn. Tillie Pierce stated that by July 2, 1863, “the orchard and space around the buildings were covered with the shattered and dying, and the barn became more and more crowded. The scene had become terrible beyond description.” This view was taken from the southwest facing northeast at approximately 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 5, 2008.
The south side Jacob Weikert House. On the porch, covered by a large sheet, were the bodies of Brigadier-General Stephen Weed, Lieutenant Charles Hazlett, and Colonel Patrick O’Rorke. Tillie Pierce said just south of the house, or in front of the house, was a pile of amputated limbs “higher than the fence.” View from the south looking north at approximately 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 5, 2008.
The east side of the Jacob Weikert House. The Taneytown Road is in the foreground. In the bottom left window (basement doorway at the time of the battle) is the room where General Weed was taken to recover from his wound on July 2nd. Tillie Pierce sat with him that day, but he was dead when she came back to visit him on July 3rd. On this side of the house Tillie Pierce also reported an “amputating bench” where arms and legs were removed. View is from the northeast facing southwest at approximately 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 5, 2008.
The rear, or north side of the Weikert House. During the afternoon of July 2nd, Mrs. Weikert and her daughters baked bread for the soldiers. Tillie Pierce recalled, “as soon as one ovenful was baked, it was replenished with new, and the freshly baked loaves at once cut up and distributed.” View from the north looking south at approximately 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 5, 2008.
The west side of the Jacob Weikert House, and the carriage shed which the current owners claim is original to the house. The Weikerts and Tillie Pierce briefly left the house on July 3, 1863. When they returned, they needed to “pick our steps in order that we might not tread on the prostrate bodies.” Mrs. Weikert searched through the house, bringing up all the cloth items that she could spare in order to make bandages. View is from the southwest facing northeast at approximately 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 5, 2008.
This field, on the east side of the Taneytown Road, is where approximately 100 bodies were buried, according to the 1864 map of engineer S.G. Elliott. View from the west looking east at approximately 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 5, 2008.