Our history books have well chronicled the battle at Gettysburg and the occupation of York, but the true heart of the Union was the pure industrial might and commitment of its citizens to preserve the United States of America. Berks County, home to the Ringgold Light Artillery, P&R Railroad, iron furnaces and numerous stops along the Underground Railroad, serves as an outstanding example of the innovation and dedication that were the driving forces behind this turning point of American history.
Discover the deeper history of the Civil War. Take a ride on Pennsylvania’s Americana Region’s Civil War Trail.
Tour details below. This tour is ideal for a weekend Visit.
Reading Railroad Heritage Museum (Open Sat 10am-4pm and Sunday 12pm -4pm)
500 South Third Street, Hamburg, PA 19526
The staff will enthusiastically guide you through the history of the P&R Railroad and the many contributions the train made to the Union’s victory over the Confederate South in the Civil War.
Berks History Center (Open Tuesday thru Saturday 10am-3pm)
940 Centre Avenue, Reading, PA 19601
Explore the library, archives and exhibits for the stories of the four firsts in Greater Reading: the Ringgold Light Artillery, Ringgold Band, Ladies First Aid Society, and the first Civil War.
Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site (Open Wed thru Sunday 9am – 3pm)
2 Mark Bird Lane, Elverson, PA 19520
Living history demonstrations help you feel the concern of villagers to the proximity of battle as they work to produce pig iron, a vital component in the manufacture of Civil War weapons.