Celebrating 20 Years!

Celebrating 20 Years!

The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Bradley University (OLLI) is a group of more than 1,000 individuals, age 50 and over, who learn together through three distinct programs: OLLI Classes, OLLI Learning Trips, and OLLI Study Groups.

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Monday, May 3, 2010

Civil War Tour, Day 3 -- April 30, 2010

We ate our breakfast on the hotel’s enclosed veranda and then loaded our luggage onto the bus. After a short jaunt across the river, we arrived at the National Civil War Museum in Harrisburg, PA. Interestingly, the museum opened in 2001, but no one on our tour had seen it. The museum sits high on a hill and offers a beautiful panoramic view of Harrisburg’s hills and valleys.

Bob McClosky, a retired social studies teacher, greeted us as we entered the museum and shared some stories with us. He also showed us reproductions of the items that Civil War soldiers would have carried, and we were surprised to learn that bayonets were most often used as candle holders!

Entering the main part of the museum gave us the opportunity for interactive immersion into Civil War times. We viewed many artifacts including flags, weapons, medical kits, decoding devices, and items from slave trading. A sword from the Veterans of the Grand Army of the Republic of Peoria, Illinois, is proudly displayed in a glass case. The sword was a gift to President Ulysses S. Grant at his second inauguration.

Our days, even the meals, are filled with history. Today, we ate lunch at the Appalachian Brewing Company. Our hosts told us that the building had been a paper factory at one time and was destroyed by the second largest fire in Harrisburg. After our lunch, we boarded the bus again for a one-hour drive to Gettysburg and a wonderful dinner at the historic Fairfield Inn, which is located about eight miles outside of Gettysburg. As we entered, the manager welcomed each guest and then told us about the 252 year-old building. After dinner, we drove back to the 1863 Inn at Gettysburg for the night.

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