South Pittsburgh Reporter - Serving South Pittsburgh Since 1939

Readshaw's annual monumental ride coming up


August 30, 2005

The appropriate anniversary gift should be made of wood, but there will be little of that around when state Rep. Harry Readshaw (D-Allegheny) and A.B.A.T.E. of Pennsylvania stage the fifth annual Ride for the Monuments from Harrisburg to Gettysburg on September 17.

The annual procession, organized by The Alliance of Bikers Aimed Toward Education and Readshaw's Pennsylvania Gettysburg Monuments Project, benefits the trust fund for the continued maintenance of the more than 140 Pennsylvania monuments and markers on the Gettysburg Battlefield. Proceeds also go to the Gettysburg Battlefield Preservation Association for its ongoing restoration of the historic Daniel Lady Farm in Gettysburg, which was a Confederate regimental headquarters and field hospital during the epic three-day battle. Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee spent time at the farm on the first night of the fight.

Last year, nearly 400 motorcyclists raised almost $10,000 on the trek, which begins by the Veterans Memorial Fountain on Commonwealth Avenue behind the state Capitol, and winds its way to Battlefield Harley-Davidson on Route 30 east of Gettysburg.

For the third consecutive year, Lt. Gov. Catherine Baker Knoll is scheduled to join Readshaw in leading the procession.

Sign-up will begin at 11 a.m., with the ride beginning at 1 p.m. A $10 donation is requested for registration. All riders will receive a free “Readshaw's Raiders” T-shirt featuring a new design for 2005.

Battlefield Harley-Davidson in Gettysburg will again provide refreshments and entertainment at the end of the ride, at which time a ceremonial check and awards presentation will take place.

Coincidently, a rededication ceremony will take place on Little Round Top on the Gettysburg Battlefield the same day to mark the completion of the restoration of the 155th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry “Zouave” monument, work funded by the Pennsylvania Gettysburg Monuments Project.

The monument is one of the most photographed on the battlefield. It portrays a soldier from the Pittsburgh-centered unit loading his musket. During the early to mid-1900s, the soldier's hand was lost, possibly to lightning.

With the completion of the work, funded through the efforts of Readshaw and the Camp Curtin Historical Society, the soldier has a new hand.

In addition to Readshaw and ABATE, this year's Ride for the Monuments is being assisted by these co-sponsors: Battlefield Harley-Davidson; Comcast; Pennsylvania Soft Drink Bottler's Association; Dominion Gas; Markel Corp .; and, Klett Rooney Lieber & Schorling.

“As a result of our past motorcycle rides and donations from literally thousands of people, the funds are now in place for the park service to fund the current cleaning and repair needs of these monuments to the heroes of the Commonwealth who fought on their home state's soil to preserve the Union,” Readshaw said. “Our goal now is to ensure that trust funds are in place so that the regular maintenance needs of these monuments are met for as long as America honors what happened at Gettysburg and the sacrifices that were made there.”

More information about the Ride for the Monuments can be obtained by calling 717-731-8955.

More information about the Gettysburg Monuments Project can be obtained by contacting Readshaw's Harrisburg office by phone at 717-783-0411 or by e-mail at


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