Anybody who enjoys learning about the Civil War, taking scenic river cruises, or both, needs to block 35 days off in their calendar next spring.
American Cruise Lines has announced a new cruise, called the Civil War Battlefields Cruise. It will depart from New Orleans on May 4, 2024, and will conclude in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, on June 6, 2024. The 35-day itinerary, which travels through 13 states, includes stops at nearly every major battlefield of the Civil War — including Fort Sumter, Shiloh, Antietam, and Gettysburg.
“Led by a dedicated onboard Civil War historian, you will travel from the banks of the Tennessee and Mississippi Rivers to the hallowed grounds of the East Coast, exploring America’s major Civil War battlefields, places of remembrance, and reflection,” American Cruise Lines explains.
“Along your journey, recognized authorities will share in-depth, untold stories of the people, places, and events that took place during this historic time when our nation was divided.”
Indeed, the cruise will be led by Civil War scholar Bertram Hayes-Davis, who is the great, great, grandson of Jefferson Davis. Known for having been president of the Confederate States from 1861–1865, Davis had also represented Mississippi in both the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives.
“This cruise is one of the most holistic views of the Civil War ever offered,” Hayes-Davis said in a statement.
“Guests will experience the people, places, and events of the war, as they visit the battlefields and stand where history was made,” Hayes-Davis continued. “This is a unique opportunity to see the entire scope of the battles of the Civil War and put them in context to each other and the entire conflict.”
The Cruise And Its Itinerary
The Civil War Battlefields Cruise, which will also include land excursions, will take place on three ships and sail the Mississippi River, the Tennessee River, the Potomac River, the East Coast Intracoastal Waterway, and the Chesapeake Bay.
The cruise will focus on all three major theaters of the Civil War.
For instance, on days 1–8, you’ll cruise from New Orleans to Memphis aboard American Cruise Lines’ American Melody while learning about the Anaconda Plan and the Vicksburg Campaign. Then, on days 9–14, you’ll cruise in Tennessee from Nashville to Chattanooga aboard American Symphony while learning about the major land campaigns of the Civil War’s western theater.
Next, days 15–17 will be spent on a land package following General Sherman’s famous “March to the Sea,” while days 18–26 are a cruise from Jacksonville to Norfolk, Virginia, aboard American Eagle learning about the Union’s naval power.
Days 27–33 feature a cruise from Norfolk to Washington, D.C. and Baltimore aboard American Eagle. Attendees will then disembark and travel from Baltimore to Sharpsburg, Maryland, to visit Antietam.
Finally, days 34 and 35 feature a land excursion to Gettysburg.
Know So You Can Book
The cruise fare includes a pre-cruise hotel stay in New Orleans, the 35-day exploration of Civil War battlefields, daily excursions and entertainment, and all transportation and hotels between cruise segments. The fare also includes all meals and beverages as well as tips, gratuities, and port charges.
The price per person begins at $24,700 depending on stateroom selection.
You can learn more about the cruise including the itinerary at American Cruise Lines’ Civil War Battlefields Cruise.
Be sure to also check out our river cruises content, including: