News from the Home Front

News from the Home Front

While the Civil War dominated the headlines, life continued on as normal as possible for everyday citizens. Farmers still had fields to tend, blacksmiths forged their wares, and families worked, traveled, and went to school. This roadtrip takes you on an adventure into the daily lives of 19th century folks who were doing their best to maintain a regular life. Along the way you’ll learn about blacksmithing, agriculture and even the timepieces our ancestors wore. This roadtrip will allow you to glimpse daily life in the years 1861 to 1865.

John Harris / Simon Cameron Mansion - Harrisburg

This quaint stone residence was originally the home of John Harris Jr., the founder of Harrisburg. He settled this land and built his house around 1766. It was later bought by Simon Cameron, Lincoln’s Secretary of War, and is now headquarters for the Historical Society of Dauphin County as well as a museum. One of the must-see artifacts on your trip through the museum are the 14-foot French mirrors in the parlor. Simon Cameron acquired these beauties during his time as Ambassador to Russia. And it doesn’t take long to see why he went through the great trouble of bringing them home to Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania National Fire Museum - Harrisburg

Torching and burning towns was a major weapon for the Confederate Army, and firefighters played a crucial role in saving Pennsylvanian towns and cities. The Pennsylvania National Fire Museum tells the story of firefighting through Civil War times and beyond. Located inside a beautifully restored 19th century firehouse in historic Harrisburg, visitors are welcomed to stop by for a look at their display of rare firefighting memorabilia. Some of the highlights include the oldest known hand pumper in the United States, built in 1791, a red-painted hose carriage from the 1850’s, as well as vintage helmets and uniforms.

Broad Street Market - Harrisburg

Make a pit stop at the Broad Street Market for some farm-fresh produce, meats, and prepared foods. Darting back to 1860, this farmer’s market is a historic part of Harrisburg. The market was an important supplier of food for Camp Curtain, the largest Union deployment. And even today, it’s a great source for a snack and some much-needed relaxation.


Eat Here: Bricco - Harrisburg

Downtown Harrisburg’s premier world-dining experience, located at International Place on Chestnut Street. Fine Italian and Mediterranean cuisine, with a menu that rotates seasonally to deliver rustic, soulful dishes from the South of France, Italy, Greece and Spain. Open for lunch and dinner.

Sleep Here: The Milestone Inn on the River

A distinguished riverfront mansion, with four overnight guest rooms that are simply perfect for romantic getaways and restful weekend escapes. With luxurious amenities and full breakfast every morning is the perfect place to recharge during your trip.