Heritage of the Bushman Family in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania

Faces of Gettysburg: Heritage of the Bushman Family in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania

 Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, is a solemn testament to the sacrifices made during the Civil War, with its battlefields and historic sites. Among the names etched into the town’s history is the Bushman family, whose legacy intertwines with this hallowed ground’s blood-stained fields and haunted homesteads. Join us as we delve into the fascinating tale of the Bushman family’s connection to the Battle of Gettysburg and their enduring impact on the region.

The Battlefield Connection

When touring Gettysburg’s battlefield, watch for the Bushman name, a key figure in the town’s history. The Masonic Temple, dedicated to Samuel M. Bushman, and the hotel bearing his plaque are noteworthy landmarks. Below Little Round Top, the Michael Bushman farm played a pivotal role in the four-day battle, serving as a Confederate field hospital and witnessing the heroics of Joshua Chamberlain’s Maine regiment. The farm, now part of the National Park, is rumored to be haunted, with tales of campfires and apparitions haunting the night.

George Bushman’s farm on the Baltimore Pike served as a significant Union hospital, treating over 1,200 Union and 125 Confederate soldiers. Notably, Lewis Powell, a Confederate treated here, later joined John Wilkes Booth in the assassination of President Lincoln. The farm became a final resting place for 52 Union and 41 Confederate soldiers, and today, it is a solemn part of the National Battlefield Park.

Lewis Bushman’s farm on Sach’s Road was another crucial field hospital site, treating over 10,000 wounded soldiers, including prominent Union officers. The sacrifices made on these farms are etched into the landscape and history of Gettysburg.

The Rise of Samuel Milton Bushman

Samuel Milton Bushman, born in 1847, emerged from humble beginnings to become a prominent figure in Gettysburg. Starting as an errand boy at age 16, he became the president of the First National Bank, earning the distinction of being the wealthiest resident in the town. Samuel’s opulent lifestyle, marked by extravagant parties and balls, left an indelible mark on the community.

Samuel Milton Bushman Jr., the nephew of the banker, ventured beyond Gettysburg. A veteran of the Spanish-American War and a former Marine, he earned his law degree and eventually settled in Gallup, New Mexico Territory. There, he played a pivotal role in various capacities, from serving as a district attorney to being a corporate officer.

The Bushman Legacy in Jefferson City

Samuel Milton Bushman III, the son of Samuel Jr., and his brother, Uncle Bill, chose a different path, both becoming attorneys. However, Samuel Milton Bushman IV broke away from legal traditions, becoming a merchant and a proud guardian of his family’s heritage. The Bushman legacy continued flourishing as they became an integral part of Jefferson City, blending their roots with the evolving American narrative.

Roots in Revolution and Business Ventures

The Bushman family’s roots trace back to the early 1600s, originating from Hanover, Prussia. Evolving from Bussman to Buschman, the family settled in Strasburg, Lancaster, and eventually, Gettysburg. Two ancestors, Henry Bushman and Michael Everly, fought in the American Revolution, adding a layer of historical significance to the family tree.

In the 1830s, Bushman relatives became silkworm farmers, and later, after the Civil War, they ventured into the candy business, establishing the White Horse Candy Company. Notably, the Bushmans were crafting sweets before the iconic Hershey, Pennsylvania, came into existence.

Reflecting on Bushman family’s journey adds a profound layer of appreciation for the resilience and spirit that shaped America. From the blood-soaked fields of the Civil War to the bustling streets of Jefferson City, the Bushman legacy remains an integral part of the nation’s rich tapestry. God bless America, the land that the Bushmans have loved and shaped for generations.

There’s so much to learn and see in historic Gettysburg. Book your stay at the historic Tillie Pierce House Inn today!