Fodor's Expert Review National Museum of Civil War Medicine
The critical role that early medicine played in the Civil War is front and center at this museum, believed to be the only one of its kind. Housed in a former funeral home that prepped the bodies of soldiers who died at Antietam, it's said that ghostly footsteps sometimes echo in the night. By day, a soundtrack of moans and groans plays as visitors wander past a life-size tableau of soldiers preparing to amputate a comrade's leg. A Civil War ambulance, hospital tent, and various surgical instruments testify to the advances in technology that the war fostered. The museum also highlights the documented but barely-known role of black Civil War doctors and nurses, and camp life for black soldiers. Finally, letters written by wounded patients illustrate humanity amid the tragedies of war.