Archive by Author

Safe at Home

31 May

Brett made it! Yesterday, Brett arrived at the National Civil War Museum safe and sound. We’ll be updating the images and videos of his march in the next few days, so stay tuned. It is not too late to donate to the fundraiser, please go to


Almost Home!

30 May

Brett is almost home! last night, he made it to the Peace Church in Camp Hill, and was met by friends from the National Civil War Museum. Brett will return to the Museum on Memorial Day, a fitting tribute to those who lost their lives during the Civil War. We’ll greet him when he arrives, scheduled between approximately 11am-12pm. This time is, of course, an estimate. To donate, please visit

Days 10 and 11

28 May

After entering Pennsylvania, Brett was faced with an amazing storm slashing across central Pennsylvania. He’s fine, but you can see a video of his view of the storm here. Today, Brett will be leaving Shippensburg and entering Carlisle on Walnut Bottom Rd.

Brett will be staying at the Peace Church on Trindle Rd. in Camp Hill on Sunday evening, his last night before his triumphant return to Harrisburg (marching through the ArtsFest!).

On to Sharpsburg

24 May

As we all were enjoying the weekend, the intrepid Brett Kelley has been slogging his way through Front Royal and Stephenson VA, on to Charlestown, WV, and he’s officially breaking through into the north. He’ll be in Sharpsburg, MD until this evening. Our excellent collection of videos and images has been steadily growing, please see the video and image collections on the right of the page!

Brett is Getting Ready, and the Game is Here!

12 May

Brett Kelley is readying himself for his amazing journey by foot from Fredericksburg, VA to Harrisburg, PA. He’ll start off at the Sergeant Kirkland Monument at Fredericksburg and end at the “Moment of Mercy” statue at the National Civil War Museum on May 30th. He’s already made the TV news.

Meanwhile, the alternate reality game “The Jewel of the Valleys” has kicked off with the discovery of this bizarre document in the archives of the Museum.

If you’re a teacher, we’d love you to join The Jewel of the Valleys wiki page, where students and teachers can collaborate on the exciting mystery by sharing information, solving puzzles, analyzing documents, and perhaps bragging a bit?

This poster (above)  also would work well for driving student and public interest in the game (with a QR Code for smartphone/tablet users).

Of course, anyone can play, and the clues will start rolling in on May 15th, the eve of Brett’s departure. You’ll also find this and this quite useful in the game!

Stay tuned, and have fun, and as the mysterious document says..

Civil War Alternate Reality Game in May 2011!

23 Mar

For teachers and students throughout the world: There will be an educational Civil War “alternate reality” game beginning May 15th, 2011, hosted by the National Civil War Museum in Harrisburg, PA.

The game, titled “The Jewel of the Valleys,” is being run in support of the fundraiser “In Their Footsteps: On the March in Pennsylvania,” which benefits the education department of the Museum.

The game will run the length of the fundraiser, in which the brave museum curator, Brett Kelley, will again choose to live the life of a Civil War soldier for two weeks. Last year, Brett chose to live outdoors as a Union soldier (and it coincided with two of the nastiest northeastern blizzards) last February. This year, Brett will be traveling as a Confederate soldier by foot from Fredericksburg, VA to Harrisburg.

The game will kick off with a “QR code” and web address being sent to educators and students around the country. The website will detail a dark and mysterious puzzle to be solved through the use of Civil War era communication technologies and authentic Civil War documents in the Museum’s archives.

Students may work collaboratively are on their own to follow the mystery. The  ultimate objective of the game is to solve the mystery of “The Jewel of the Valleys.” The winner(s) of the game will be announced as Brett reaches the end of his journey- the Civil War Museum in Harrisburg.

How can teachers get their students involved? Make contact by following the National Civil War Museum on Facebook or on Twitter (@NCWM), follow Brett Kelley on Twitter (@cwsoldier24_7), or subscribe to this blog.

This blog will also hail the beginning of the game, and it has been rumored that the mysterious force behind the “Jewel of the Valleys” game may even have social media accounts for students to follow!

Questions? Check the comments below: