GETTYSBURG, Pa. (AP) — On the Civil War battlefield where President Abraham Lincoln gave a speech that symbolized his presidency and the sacrifices made by Union and Confederate forces, thousands gathered Tuesday, historians and everyday Americans alike, to ponder what the Gettysburg Address has meant to the nation.
Civil War historian James McPherson and U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell were scheduled to speak to mark the 150th anniversary of the speech. Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett also will deliver remarks.
The event comes near the end of a momentous year for the park, city and college that share the name Gettysburg, as hundreds of thousands of visitors took part in historical re-enactments and ceremonies.
Lincoln's Gettysburg Address — first delivered here nearly five months after the major battle that left tens of thousands of men wounded, dead or missing — will be read by a re-enactor to mark the anniversary. The ceremony included a wreath-laying at the Soldiers' National Cemetery. There also will be a graveside salute to U.S. Colored Troops at noon, and a tree planting ceremony in the afternoon.