About This Lesson
This account of the Prairie Grove Civil War battle is based on the National Register of Historic Places registration file for "Prairie Grove Battlefield" and other primary sources about the battle. It was made possible by the National Park Service's American Battlefield Protection Program. The lesson written by Don Montgomery, Park Historian at Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park, and Lea Flowers Baker, Education Coordinator at the Arkansas Historic Preservation Program, an agency of the Department of Arkansas Heritage. It was edited by Kathleen Hunter, an education consultant working in Hartford, CT and the Teaching with Historic Places staff. TwHP is sponsored, in part, by the Cultural Resources Training Initiative and Parks as Classrooms programs of the National Park Service. This lesson is one in a series that brings the important stories of historic places into the classrooms across the country.
Where it fits into the curriculum
Topics: The lesson can be used in teaching units on the Civil War, and southern history. It will help students gain a better understanding of how the Civil War affected civilians of all ages and provide an opportunity to examine what and why people remember, and how those memories affect our record of the past.
Time period: Civil War Era
Relevant United States History Standards for Grades 5-12
Relevant Curriculum Standards for Social Studies
Find your state's social studies and history standards for grades Pre-K-12
Objectives for students
1) To place the Battle of Prairie Grove in the context of Arkansas' role in the Civil War.
2) To understand the harsh realities of civil war and its effects on both soldiers and civilians.
3) To learn to analyze oral histories for content and reliability.
4) To consider how events related to the Civil War affected communities across the country.
Materials for students
The materials listed below either can be used directly on the computer or can be printed out, photocopied, and distributed to students. The maps and images appear twice: in a low-resolution version with associated questions and alone in a larger, high-quality version.
1) one map of Prairie Grove Battlefield;
2) three readings from eye witness accounts of the battle and its aftermath;
3) three photos of places associated with the battle.
Visiting the site
Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park is approximately twelve miles west of Fayetteville, Arkansas, on U.S. Highway 62 and is open year round from 8:00 a.m. until dark. For more information, contact: Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park, P. O. Box 306, Prairie Grove, AR 72753, or visit the park's Web site.