American Battlefield Protection Program
  • A portion of the battlefield landscape at Little Bighorn

    American Battlefield Protection Program

    Cultural Resources National Park Service

Battlefield Preservation Publications

Recent Publications

The papers and presentations for the 2014 "Fields of Conflict" Conference, held in Columbia, South Carolina, are available to the public. 

The Civil War Trust, through a grant from ABPP, has identified a multiplicity of funding sources for the preservation of battlefields across the country.


Civil War

The Civil War Sites Advisory Commission Report on the Nation's Civil War Battlefields
The CWSAC was established in 1991 because of national concern over the increasing threat to the preservation of Civil War sites. The 15-member Commission, appointed by Congress and the Secretary of the Interior, undertook a two-year study that identified the nation's historically significant Civil War battlefields, determined their relative importance and their current condition, assessed threats to their integrity, and recommended alternatives for preserving and interpreting them. The Commission's Report, which summarizes its findings, was presented to Congress in July 1993.

CWSAC Report on the Nation's Civil War Battlefields, Technical Volume II: Battle Summaries
The Civil War Sites Advisory Commission studied and prioritized 384 battlefields. This compendium provides historical summaries and statistical information for each battle.

Draft State by State Updates to the Civil War Sites Advisory Commission Report (2010)
Congress directed the Secretary of the Interior, acting through the ABPP, to produce an update to the 1993 Civil War Sites Advisory Commission Report on the Nations Civil War Battlefields. The State by State updates address preservation activities carried out at the battlefields since 1993; changes in the condition of the battlefields since 1993; and any other relevant developments relating to the battlefields since 1993.

Shenandoah Valley Civil War Sites Study
The Study of Civil War Sites in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia was authorized in 1990 by Public Law 101-628 to identify significant Civil War sites in the Shenandoah Valley, to determine their condition, to establish their relative importance, to assess short- and long-term threats to their integrity, and to provide alternatives for their preservation and interpretation. The report studied 15 battlefields: Front Royal; First Winchester; Opequon; Second Kernstown; Second Winchester; New Market; First Kernstown; Tom's Brook; Cool Spring; Fisher's Hill; Cedar Creek; Cross Keys; Port Republic; Piedmont; and McDowell. The study, which was produced by the ABPP, was delivered to the Secretary of the Interior and Congress in September 1992.

Revolutionary War/War of 1812

The Revolutionary War and War of 1812 Historic Preservation Study
The Study identified 677 significant places associated with both wars. The study report presents information about at-risk battlefields and associated properties, establishes preservation priorities among the sites, and provides information about model programs at the Federal, State, and local levels that can be used to help protect Revolutionary War and War of 1812 sites. The report, which was produced by the ABPP, was delivered to the Secretary of the Interior and Congress in 2007.



Archeology Laws: A Guide
The site summarizes in plain English the key laws and regulations that protect archeological resources. Understanding these laws is an important step in preserving and maintaining fragile archeological resources.

Managing Archeological Collections
Covers all aspects of caring for archeological collections -- the activities dealing with all kinds of archeological collections (i.e., objects, records, reports, and digital data) in all kinds of places (i.e., the field, the archeologist's office, the lab, and the repository.) The information provided is designed to assist those who are interested in or need to learn more about preserving and managing archeological collections over the long term.

The Secretary of the Interior's Standards and Guidelines for Archeology and Historic Preservation
The Standards and Guidelines are intended to provide technical advice about archeological and historic preservation activities and methods.

Strategies for Protecting Archeological Sites on Private Lands
Strategies identifies a wide variety of tools that are being used to protect archeological sites, summarizes the benefits of each, and notes features of these tools that merit special attention. Case study examples of actual archeological protection projects are presented to illustrate the use of selected protection strategies. Information on lessons learned and keys to success highlight experiences in communities all across the country. Finally, excerpts from selected documents provide examples of language that has been used in easements, ordinances, and plans for protecting archeological sites.


Guidelines for the Treatment of Cultural Landscapes
The Secretary of the Interior's Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties and the Guidelines for the Treatment of Cultural Landscapes provide guidance to cultural landscape owners, stewards and managers, landscape architects, preservation planners, architects, contractors, and project reviewers prior to and during the planning and implementation of project work.

The Historic American Landscapes Survey Guidelines
The Historic American Landscapes Survey (HALS) mission is to record historic landscapes in the United States and its territories through measured drawings and interpretive drawings, written histories, and large-format black and white photographs and color photographs for the HABS/HAER/HALS Collection at the Library of Congress.

Protecting Cultural Landscapes: Planning, Treatment and Management of Historic Landscapes (Preservation Brief 36)
Preservation Brief 36/Protecting Cultural Landscapes provides preservation professionals, cultural resource managers, and historic property owners a step-by-step process for preserving two types of cultural landscapes: historic designed and vernacular. While this process is ideally applied to an entire landscape, it can address a single feature, such as a perennial garden, family burial plot, or a sentinel oak in an open meadow. Preservation Brief 36 provides a framework and guidance for undertaking projects to ensure a successful balance between historic preservation and change to the landscape.

Sustainable Military Earthworks Management [Currents #5]
Military earthworks management is an evolving science that requires an integrated approach to natural and cultural resource management. Many landscape stewards in the public and private sectors employ a variety of techniques in an effort to expand the range of successful management practices. Currents #5 identifies management concepts for the landscape as a whole and develops a management strategy for militray earthworks. Although specific approaches to earthworks management differ based on individual conditions, the management fundamentals outlined in Current #5 apply to every situation and are explored in detail in the online publication.

Vimy Declaration for the Conservation of Battlefield Terrain (draft, 2000)
The "Vimy Charter for Conservation of Historic Battlefield Terrain," is a draft declaration on managing battlefield terrain that addresses the key components of planning, research, inventory, and treatment facing battlefield managers internationally. The Charter is the result of an an international workshop hosted by Veterans Affairs Canada that focused on management approaches to battlefield terrain.


ABPP Grant Product File Structure and Naming Guidance
This technical paper provides data management advice for our program. File names which are too long cannot be transferred into the respective grant’s archive without modification. ABPP has developed a file naming standard which helps product archiving. The use of brief file names, which require no modification post-submission, is preferable to longer explanatory file names.

Guidance for Developing a Battlefield Preservation Plan
This technical working paper emphasizes the importance of good planning to successful battlefield preservation efforts and recommends a number of planning elements to include in battlefield plans.

Guidelines for Identifying, Evaluating, and Registering America's Historic Battlefields
National Register Bulletin #40 offers guidance to State historic preservation offices, Federal agencies, local governments, preservation professionals, and interested individuals in preparing nominations to the National Register of Historic Places for historic battlefields.

Standards and Guidelines for Preservation Planning
Preservation planning is a process that organizes preservation activities (identification, evaluation, registration and treatment of historic properties) in a logical sequence. The Standards for Preservation Planning discuss the relationship among these activities while the remaining activity standards consider how each activity should be carried out. The Guidelines for Preservation Planning link the Standards with more specific guidance and technical information. They describe one approach to meeting the Standards for Preservation Planning. Agencies, organizations or individuals proposing to approach planning differently may wish to review their approaches with the National Park Service.

Articles and Brochures

Altogether Fitting and Proper: Saving America's Battlefields (CRM Magazine Vol. 20, No. 5)
This 48-page periodical includes articles about conservation easement programs, grassroots battlefield preservation efforts, legal aspects of land protection, heritage tourism, landscape treatments, useful computer technologies for battlefield planning and management, and creating successful battlefield preservation partnerships.

America's Hidden Battlefields: Protecting the Archeological Story
A full-color brochure explaining the importance of protecting the fragile archeological resources beneath the battlefield landscape. Developed in cooperation with the Society for Historical Archaeology.