FEARLESS FRIDAY: Sherfy Battlefield Garden

In this edition of Fearless Friday, we’re highlighting one of the newer service projects that Gettysburg College is involved with: Sherfy Battlefield Garden. This summer will mark the fourth planting season at Sherfy, which was developed in 2013 by Hannah Grose ’13. The garden is located just off of Emmitsburg Road by the house that, in 1860, belonged to Joseph Sherfy and his family. Bullet holes mar the brick walls of the farmhouse, testifying to the fighting that occurred all over the fifty acres of Joseph Sherfy’s farmland on the last two days of the Battle of Gettysburg. Sites of heavy fighting during the battle, like the Peach Orchard, Devil’s Den, Little Round Top, and Big Round Top were all part of the family’s land in 1863. The house itself also became a field hospital while the armies tangled nearby.

Today, thanks to Hannah Grose, new life sprouts every season on the land that once saw so much destruction. Sherfy Garden represents true teamwork between the College and the larger community. The Gettysburg Foundation, a local organization dedicated to supporting education about the battle, owns the garden and works with the Center for Public Service (CPS) to maintain it by recruiting volunteers and raising awareness about the project. The Civil War Institute helped to get the project off the ground in 2013 through financial contributions as well. Sherfy Garden’s historic location and its new community mission make it a unique service opportunity on campus that works to promote food justice in our area.

Issues of food justice are particularly important in Adams County. Sherfy Garden donates all of its produce to the Campus Kitchens Project, which is another service program supported by CPS. Over the three years that Sherfy Garden has been operating, nearly two thousand pounds of fresh vegetables and herbs have been given to the Campus Kitchen where they are used to make meals for community members that are currently dealing with food insecurity. With Spring in full swing, Sherfy is gearing up for another bountiful growing season.

Consider volunteering your time this semester to plant and help maintain the garden! Please contact Emma Korowotny ’18, the program coordinator for Sherfy Garden, at koroem01@gettysburg.edu for more information.

For further reading about the garden’s history and creation, check out the links below!