New Web Site Helps Visitors Experience the Heart of the Civil War

New Web Site Helps Visitors Experience the Heart of the Civil War; Washington, Frederick, and Carroll Counties are Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area

(Frederick and Hagerstown, MD)- The Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area has announced the launch of the new Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area web site, www.HeartOfTheCivilWar.org.
Executive Director Elizabeth Scott Shatto said, "With one foot in the north, and one foot in the south, the story of the Civil War, its causes, battles, heroes and villains...its very meaning can be told nowhere better than in this part of Maryland," explains Shatto. "The site is designed to help visitors plan their trip to experience 'the heart of it all': the sites, towns, and battlefields that were significant during the Civil War."
"Think of this area as your 'base camp' for driving the popular Civil War Trails and visiting the battlefields and sites of Antietam, Gettysburg, Monocacy, South Mountain, Harper's Ferry, Baltimore and Washington, D.C.," says Shatto. A certified Maryland Heritage Area, and a partner in the Journey Through Hallowed Ground National Heritage Area, The Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area (HCWHA) is located in Carroll, Frederick and Washington counties in Maryland. With comprehensive Civil War event listings for the area and site-specific information, this web site is a must-use resource for anyone planning a trip to Civil War sites.
The web site guides users to discover the region based on themes that fully examine the Civil War story. "On the Home Front" explores the region from the border-state experience, where divided loyalties were experienced first hand. Frederick, Hagerstown and Westminster are featured as historically significant cities, and as places where visitors may enjoy shopping districts, dining, and cultural events in addition to museums and heritage sites. "In the Heat of Battle" walks the visitor through hallowed ground and landscapes where armed conflicts occurred such as South Mountain, Antietam, and Monocacy. Sites like the National Museum of Civil War Medicine, cemeteries, and hospital centers tell stores from "Beyond the Battlefield." This theme tells a compelling story of compassion and struggles of the dying by revealing how the local residents cared for the wounded and the medical procedures used to treat the wounds of battle.
The single bloodiest day in American history took place at Antietam National Battlefield in Washington County, but there were dozens of other battles, skirmishes, and important actions that took place here during the Civil War. No other part of Maryland saw as much conflict. "This is an exciting time as our heritage area looks ahead to the Sesquicentennial of the American Civil War starting in 2009 with events commemorating the 150th anniversary of John Brown's raid on Harpers Ferry, including many incidents that happened in Washington County, and in other parts of Maryland," said Tom Riford. Riford is the president of the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the chairman of the Washington County Delegation of the Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area.
The significance of the Civil War in north-central Maryland is indisputable; Washington, Frederick, and Carroll counties experienced the horrors of war firsthand, and each played a leading role in the state's Civil War history.
The new web site was financed in part with State Funds from the Maryland Heritage Areas Authority, an instrumentality of the State of Maryland. To find out more about visiting the Heart of the Civil War Heritage or to request a travel packet, email info@heartofthecivilwar.org, call 800-999-3613 or visit www.HeartOfTheCivilWar.org.
The Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area promotes the stewardship of our historic, cultural, and natural Civil War resources, encourages superior visitor experiences, and stimulates tourism, economic prosperity, and educational development, thereby improving the quality of life of our community for the benefit of both residents and visitors. The heritage area offers grants to municipalities and non-profit organizations.