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The Origin of Gettysburg Sentinels

As a veteran himself, Lieutenant Colonel Hewitt’s Gettysburg Sentinels continues to honor soldiers who may have passed over a century or more ago, but whose actions helped shaped our nation’s history. Using trees that either witnessed the events of the Battle of Gettysburg or grew in the area afterwards continues to be a way that we can honor these soldiers and the stories of the land.

The handcrafted items made at Gettysburg Sentinels serve as meaningful reminders of those who gave their lives in order to serve and protect our country.

A Gettysburg Address Witness Tree Magnifying Glass

For example, a Gettysburg Address Witness Tree Magnifying Glass might conjure feelings of pride that a patron is holding something that witnessed President Abraham Lincoln’s two minute morale-bolstering speech.

General John Buford's Witness Tree Bottle Stopper

Using a bottle stopper made from the General John Buford’s Witness Tree might remind its owner of the fact that General Buford was the first to encounter Confederate soldiers and shore up defenses so that other Union soldiers could keep holding high ground.

Spangler’s Spring Witness Tree Pen
A Spangler’s Spring Witness Tree Pen

Or, a Spangler’s Spring Witness Tree Pen might serve as a reminder of the legendary yet temporary truce where soldiers from both sides agreed to lay down their arms for a cool, refreshing drink.

The Story of Gettysburg Sentinels

Meet Bill Hewitt!

Gettysburg Sentinels Founder, Bill Hewitt
Gettysburg Sentinels Founder, Bill Hewitt

Retired Army Lt. Colonel William D. Hewitt founded Gettysburg Sentinels in 2007 to make owning products crafted from wood harvested from the Gettysburg Battlefield accessible to everyone. Many of our products are made from the wood of Witness Trees, which stood during the famous battle in 1863! If we didn't, these trees would most likely be discarded, and these key elements of our rich history would be gone forever.

In early 2022, Colonel Hewitt sold the business to long-time friend and fellow woodworker, Greg Allen. Greg and his wife Tina, who live in a historic house on Chambersburg Road just blocks away from the Battlefield, continue the legacy of Gettysburg Sentinels and its commitment to preserving history through woodworking. Greg recently retired from a company he founded in 1982 and brings a passion for history and woodworking to each product he crafts.

History in Your Hands

It's important to recognize the role that those who served in our military helped in shaping our country. Military personnel - be it those who were drafted in one of the six previously-mentioned wars or those who volunteered - have given up time with friends and family, their livelihoods, and some even their lives.

While there are many different ways that civilians can thank service members for their dedication to their country, veteran-owned businesses like Gettysburg Sentinels not only support those who served, but helps keep the story of those who served long before us.

Click here to learn more about Lieutenant Colonel Hewitt, his vision, and the founding of Gettysburg Sentinels.


Take a look at our unique hand-crafted items made from the wood of the Battle of Gettysburg. Each piece is made with care and attention to detail and is a perfect addition to any history enthusiast's collection. They also make wonderful gifts!

Order now and own a piece of history!

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