Saturday, November 15, 2008

CWL---Studying for the LBG Exam's Questions on Monuments

On the 2006 Gettysburg Licensed Battlefield Guide exam, there were 20 black and white, photocopied photos with all lettering digitally chiseled off the image. Test takers had to pick the name of the monument from a list of 22 or 24 monument names. I identified one equestrian monument and that was due to the tree in the background. I took the full amount of time on the Saturday morning test of 200+ questions.

So, that Saturday afternoon I started shopping in Gettysburg for photo album books, compact disks, and maps. Here's a short list of what I have bought in the past two years; the list is ranked from most helpful for test preparation.

1. Monumental Battlefields: Monuments and Markers at Gettysburg, Monumental Battlefields, Inc., 2002. The set consists of four compact disks, maps, and a booklet with lists of the monuments and markers with map and compact disk coordinates. The 3500 color photographs of all monuments taken from four sides, the avenue markers, the flank markers, the hospitals' markers, the headquarters' markers, distinct topographic features, artillery pieces and buildings and other miscellaneous items is probably the most comprehensive collection of all the many collections of Gettysburg battlefield.

Distinctive features include zoom-in features to read the engravings and moderately extensive maps with the locations of the monuments. Recalling that the price was a round $20, it is also probably the best buy. Relative to exam preparation, it is easy to use and allows for a quick review. I plan to spend a half an hour a night for three weeks compiling a list of the likely monuments to appear on the exam.

2. Stephen Recker's Virtual Gettysburg, by Stephen Recker, Another Software Miracle Inc., 2002. Is truly a marvelous preparation resource for the LBG exam. One compact disk is packed with tours, period photographs, and battlefield preservation history. The guided tour of the battlefield with LBG Gary Kross who gives the tour while you are looking at what he is point to. The tour also contains 99 panoramic (360 degrees) views of the battlefield. It is as if the viewer is standing beside Garry Kross and is able to turn completely around to see what is to the right, rear and left of the Kross. Also, There is an extensive collection of period photographs of the battlefield, the monuments, and maps. The entire Kross tour is also on three audio compact disks; CWL used them for a two hour automobile tour of the battlefield and then returned to the motel room, booted up the computer and took the same tour and reviewed the period photographs at the same time. A spiral bound book is included which contains the transcript of the tour and a map of the tour stops. For this exam taker, Virtual Gettysburg is essential. The price is $129 and for the dollar investment gives ample returns.

3.Gettysburg: The Complete Pictorial of Battlefield Monuments, D. Scott Hartwig and Ann Marie Hartwig, Thomas Publications, 2007. A reprint of the 1988 Granite House publication that was updated in 2003, this 72 page stable bound magazine size booklet has the essentials. All of the many monuments and markers are pictured: bronzes, Union and Confederate state memorials, commemorative monuments, regimental monuments, as well as the more recent additions up to 2003. Regimental markers are pictured by state. At $8.95 its a good buy. CWL has turned the book into a flashcard resource by using a bookmark to cover the photograph titles. Also, CWL notes that the photographs do not have the clarity of digital images and suspects that the photographs were take in the mid-1980s.

Top Image Source: William Bretzger, Gettysburg 365

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