Grove Farm: A Visit from the President

Grove Farm: A Visit from the President

History: President Lincoln visited the Grove Farm following the Battle of Antietam to review Union General George McClellan's forces in the area. His visit ended in a fateful decision.

When Robert E. Lee withdrew his Army of Northern Virginia across the Potomac River near Shepherdstown, McClellan sent part of his army in pursuit, while the others rested. Both armies were exhausted and surprised to still be alive. President Abraham Lincoln sympathized with their need for rest, but grew increasingly impatient when McClellan failed to move weeks later.

When Lincoln took a train to visit McClellan on November 7, 1862, McClellan was relieved of duty.

More to Explore: Be sure to visit nearby Antietam National Battlefield, site of the bloodiest single-day battle of the Civil War, which resulted in a Confederate retreat and gave President Lincoln the victory he needed to confidently deliver the Emancipation Proclamation.

Stroll through the tiny town of Keedysville, which overflowed with wounded soldiers after the battle. This pastoral valley is framed by verdant South Mountain, where Greenbrier, South Mountain and Gathland state parks offer camping, hiking and nature exploration. Paddle or float Antietam Creek with a guide to see the famous Burnside Bridge, or plan side trips to Harpers Ferry National Historical Park and the C&O Canal National Historical Park along the Potomac River.

Photo Credits:

  1. "Photograph of President Abraham Lincoln meeting with officers after the Battle of Antietam."
  2. "Photograph of Abraham Lincoln meeting with General George McClellan in his tent." Photos courtesy of Library Congress Prints and Photographs Division.