American Battlefield Protection Program 2007 Grant Awards
The American Battlefield Protection Program announces the awarding of 19 grants totaling $492,184 to assist in the preservation and protection of America’s historic battlefields. The funds will support a variety of projects at battle sites in Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Georgia, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, North Carolina, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Virginia, and Vermont. Funded projects include battlefield surveys, site mapping, National Register of Historic Places nominations, preservation and management plans, cultural landscape inventories, educational materials, and archeological surveys.
The American Battlefield Protection Program funds projects conducted by federal, state, local, and tribal governments, nonprofit organizations, and educational institutions. The ABPP’s mission is to safeguard and preserve significant American battlefield lands for present and future generations as symbols of individual sacrifice and national heritage. Since 1990, the ABPP and its partners have helped to protect and enhance more than 100 battlefields by co-sponsoring 328 projects in 37 states and the District of Columbia.
Brief descriptions of each grant project follow, listed by grant recipient.
Alabama Historical Commission
In August of 1864, Fort Morgan was engaged in both the maritime battle of Mobile Bay and the following two-week siege during the Civil War. Fort Morgan was in use until World War II, but today is in poor condition as a result of deferred maintenance and incompatible materials used for previous repairs. This grant project will identify and assess the condition of the fort's masonry, recommend treatment options, and prioritize preservation needs.
Branchburg Historical Society
The American Revolutionary Battle of Two Bridges took place on December 8, 1776, when local patriots from New Jersey intercepted a party of loyalists attempting to cross the Raritan River and join the British in New Brunswick. In Phase Two of a two-part project funded by the ABPP, the Branchburg Historical Society will conduct an archeological survey and prepare a National Register nomination for the battlefield.
Buckland Preservation Society
The Battle of Buckland Mills was among the Confederate cavalry's last victories of the Civil War, and marked a turning point in the Bristoe campaign. Building on the work of a previous ABPP grant, a preservation plan will be developed for this Virginia battlefield. The goals of the plan are to recognize, preserve, rehabilitate, and protect the battlefield, and promote a heritage tourism/research center.
Burlington Community & Economic Development Office
Burlington, Vermont, played significant roles during the War of 1812-both in fighting that took place there August 2, 1813, and in support of other crucial battles of the war. This project will conduct a cultural landscape inventory of Burlington's sites associated with the War of 1812. Limited archeology will help determine boundaries for the development of a National Register nomination, while a series of public presentations and brochures will inform the public about these resources, and the importance of their preservation.
Central Virginia Battlefields Trust, Inc.
Harris Farm was the location of the last major battle of the Spotsylvania Court House campaign of the Civil War. On May 19, 1864, a Confederate attempt to turn the Union right flank was beaten back with severe casualties. Brochures and three wayside exhibit panels will be created to interpret the Harris Farm battlefield.
Citizens for Fauquier County
This grant project will identify and document Civil War battlefields Auburn I and II. The opening actions of the Bristoe Station Campaign took place at Auburn on October 13 and 14, 1863, and caused setbacks for Confederate forces. A National Register nomination will be prepared, as well as detailed GIS maps and photographs.
Western Missouri Civil War Round Table
Eight miles east of Independence, Missouri, Confederate and Union forces clashed at the Little Blue River on October 21, 1864, during the Civil War. After five hours of battle, the Union forces lost their defensive position on the west bank of the river and retreated to Independence. This grant project will fund the preparation of a National Register nomination for the Little Blue River battlefield.
Coastal Heritage Society
This project will identify and document the 1779 Revolutionary War Battlefield of Savannah, Georgia - an attack on the British-occupied city by allied French, American, Polish, and Haitian forces. The battle is considered one of the greatest British victory's of the war, and engaged an estimated 8,000 to 12,000 troops. Using the recently discovered Spring Hill Redoubt location, primary document research, and GIS mapping, limited archeological investigations will help define potential battlefield areas.
Fauquier County Government
Twelve Civil War battlefields are located in Fauquier County, Virginia - part of the Northern Virginia, Gettysburg, and Bristoe campaigns and Cavalry Operations along the Rappahannock. This grant project will build support for community-based preservation planning for these battlefields through a series of public seminars and educational material.
Guilford Battleground Company
The Battle of Guilford Courthouse was the most significant battle of the Revolutionary War's Southern Campaign, and is considered the "turning point" in America's fight for independence from England. Through a series of televised public service announcements, printed brochures, and a community forum, this project will mount a campaign to promote battlefield preservation in central North Carolina.
Heidelberg College Center for Historic and Military
On January 22, 1813, British and Indian forces attacked the Americans at Frenchtown along the River Raisin in what was one of the worst American defeats of the War of 1812. The massacre of prisoners and wounded soldiers after the surrender inspired the rallying cry "Remember River Raisin." This project will document the areas of the battlefield currently outside the defined National Register boundary, create detailed GIS maps, assess the potential of archeological resources, and identify and evaluate threats to these resources. Public meetings will be held to discuss the significance of the newly identified battlefield areas and preservation issues.
Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center
The June 1, 1637, Battle of Mystic Fort changed the English-Indian balance of power in Southern New England and opened the area to greater European settlement. The Mystic Fort battlefield can potentially yield information about the Pequot Indian community during this period of extreme social and political upheaval. This project will identify areas for archeological investigation, create a detailed GIS map of these sites, and develop a strategic, long-range preservation and education plan.
Nevada County Industrial Development Corporation
During the Camden Expedition of the Civil War, Union and Confederate forces skirmished at the Arkansas battlefields of Elkin's Ferry and Prairie D'Ane in April of 1864. Both battles resulted in Union victories. Now part of the Camden Expedition Sites National Historic Landmark, a preservation plan for these battlefields will be prepared and include the establishment of priorities for land protection. Public meetings will be held to develop community consensus and present the plan's recommendations.
Preservation Society for the American Revolution
The Preservation Society for the American Revolution is a new non-profit organization, established as a national advocacy group for the preservation of Revolutionary War and War of 1812 sites. This grant project will fund the establishment of a website for the fledgling organization, consensus building, and other membership development activities.
Building on the work of a previous ABPP grant, a preservation and management plan and National Register nomination will be developed for the Saltville, Virginia, battlefields. During the Civil War, the saltworks produced two-thirds of all the salt consumed by the Confederacy. Union forces attacked the vital and heavily fortified saltworks twice. The October 1864 battle is known for the determined Confederate defense of the saltworks and the post-battle executions of wounded African American soldiers. In December 1864, Union forces captured and destroyed the saltworks, diminishing the production of this vital resource for southern military and civilians.
Rhode Island Marine Archaeology Project
A preservation and management plan will be developed for Fort Butts, a Revolutionary War earthwork in Portsmouth, Rhode Island. First built by Colonial troops, Fort Butts was greatly expanded by British and Hessian troops during their occupation in December 1776. During the Battle of Rhode Island in August 1778, the fort became the center of the American line, although the British regained it after the Colonial force retreated. The fort's location on top of a rocky hill has limited disturbance to the site, and as a result, it is the largest intact Revolutionary War earthwork in Rhode Island.
Rutherford County Board of Commissioners
Gilbert Town played an important role in several Revolutionary War campaigns in North and South Carolina. It was a staging ground and campsite for various Colonial and British commands from 1776 to 1783. A phased comprehensive preservation plan is being developed for Gilbert Town. This grant project will fund Phase One, which will include the identification of cultural and archeological resources, and public and private meetings to gather community and landholder input.
South Carolina State Park Service
Eight Revolutionary War battlefields and numerous associated historic sites are located within the fast growing Charlotte, North Carolina/Atlanta, Georgia corridor-encompassing six different counties. A regional battlefield preservation plan for those battlefields and sites will be developed. This project will also build consensus among local, state, and national governments, and conduct public programs to increase support for and awareness of these significant battlefields.
War Memorial Museum of Virginia Foundation
The May 5, 1862, Battle of Williamsburg was a bloody, inconclusive rearguard action that marked the end of the first phase of the Peninsula Campaign during the Civil War. A cultural resource survey will assess the conditions of specific portions of the Williamsburg battlefield-Redoubts No. 1 and 2 and Fort Magruder in James City County, Virginia. A Phase I archeological investigation will be undertaken and a National Register nomination form will be prepared.