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  1. #1
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    Battlefield Expansion Legislation

    Forbes moves to expand battlefield boundaries
    By F.m. Wiggins (Staff Writer)
    Published: November 6, 2009

    PETERSBURG - Congressman J. Randy Forbes, R-Va., testified before Congress in support of the Petersburg National Battlefield Boundry Modification Act. The bill introduced by Forbes earlier this year would modify the boundaries of the current battlefield to include an additional 7,200 acres of land adjacent to its present boundaries, mainly provided through donations.

    "This legislation would provide for the expansion of Petersburg National Battlefield in Petersburg, Virginia which will serve to increase heritage tourism in the Commonwealth of Virginia and enable Americans to learn more about the years of the Civil War," Forbes testified before Congress.

    Petersburg National Battlefield currently contains 2,659 acres across a wide swath of land from City Point in Hopewell to Five Forks Battlefield in Dinwiddie County.

    Forbes said the battlefield is an integral part of the local community, an important tourist destination for the state and a touchstone of America's past.

    Petersburg National Battlefield Park Superintendent Bob Kirby said preserving the additional land is critical before the sprawling development "we know is coming to the area."

    Kirby added that while the bill is important and extends the boundaries of the park, there's one thing it doesn't provide - funding.

    "We still have a long way to go," Kirby said. "This is just the House side of the legislation, there has to be a Senate bill and then it all has to go to conference."

    Kirby said that he was actually in Washington to attend the hearing and was very proud of Forbes' actions.

    "This is going to contribute vitally to heritage tourism in Virginia," Kirby said. "The Petersburg Campaign lasted nine and a half months and 106 major actions during that campaign took place in the park and on these 7,200 acres. Nearly one-quarter of the war was fought here."

    He said that in the nearly 176 miles of land, the 106 actions were either "class A or class B" actions, meaning that the battles had a significant determination on the outcome of the war or the campaign.

    "The premise is that we would have some sort of interpretive devices on these parcels," Kirby said. "But that could take years or decades."

    - F.M. Wiggins may be reached at 732-3456, ext. 3254 or fwiggins@progress-index.com.

    Online at: http://progress-index.com/news/forbe...eld_boundaries
    Sincerely,
    Emmanuel Dabney
    Atlantic Guard Soldiers' Aid Society
    http://www.agsas.org

    "God hasten the day when war shall cease, when slavery shall be blotted from the face of the earth, and when, instead of destruction and desolation, peace, prosperity, liberty, and virtue shall rule the earth!"--John C. Brock, Commissary Sergeant, 43d United States Colored Troops

  2. #2
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    Williamsburg, Va
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    Re: Battlefield Expansion Legislation

    Thank you for posting this. This is excellent news especially with base realignment right around the corner.
    Drew Gruber

    3rd Regiment USV- Buffington's Boys,

    http://www.linkedin.com/in/drewgruber

    "God knows, as many posts as go up on this site everyday, there's plenty of folks who know how to type. Put those keyboards to work on a real issue that's tied to the history that we love and obsess over so much." F.B.

    "...mow hay, cut wood, prepare great food, drink schwitzel, knit, sew, spin wool, rock out to a good pinch of snuff and somehow still find time to go fly a kite." N.B.
    Now thats living history.

  3. #3
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    Re: Battlefield Expansion Legislation

    Forbes bill to expand battlefield passes committee
    By F.M. Wiggins (Staff Writer)
    Published: November 20, 2009

    PETERSBURG - The bill to expand the boundaries of the Petersburg National Battlefield took a step forward Wednesday when the House Committee on Natural Resources approved it.

    Earlier this month, Congressman J. Randy Forbes, R-Va., testified before Congress in support of the bill, H.R. 3388. The bill, introduced by Forbes earlier this year, would modify the boundaries of the current battlefield to include an additional 7,200 acres of land adjacent to its present boundaries, mainly through donations.

    The bill provides no new federal spending for the acquisition of the land.

    "The Petersburg National Battlefield is an integral part of the local community, an important tourist destination for the Commonwealth of Virginia, and a touchstone of America's past," Forbes said. "Expanding the battlefield will serve to increase the economic impact of heritage tourism in the region and enable Americans to learn more about this rich chapter in our tations history."

    Forbes added that he applauded the committee for moving quickly on the legislation.

    The bill has been endorsed by The Conservation Fund, the National Parks Conservation Association and the Civil War Preservation Trust.

    Petersburg National Battlefield currently contains 2,659 acres across a wide swath of land from City Point in Hopewell to Five Forks Battlefield in Dinwiddie County.

    Petersburg National Battlefield Park Superintendent Bob Kirby said preserving the additional land is critical before the sprawling development "we know is coming to the area."

    Earlier this month Kirby attended the hearing and heard Forbes' testimony on the bill in Washington.

    "We still have a long way to go," Kirby said. "This is just the House side of the legislation, there has to be a Senate bill and then it all has to go to conference."

    According to Kirby, another critical reason for the preservation of the land is the length of the Petersburg campaign - nine and a half months - and the number of signifcant actions that occured on the land - 106.

    "Nearly one-quarter of the war was fought here," Kirby said.

    - F.M. Wiggins may be reached at 732-3456, ext. 3254 or fwiggins@progress-index.com.


    Online at: http://progress-index.com/news/forbe...sses_committee
    Sincerely,
    Emmanuel Dabney
    Atlantic Guard Soldiers' Aid Society
    http://www.agsas.org

    "God hasten the day when war shall cease, when slavery shall be blotted from the face of the earth, and when, instead of destruction and desolation, peace, prosperity, liberty, and virtue shall rule the earth!"--John C. Brock, Commissary Sergeant, 43d United States Colored Troops

  4. #4
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    Re: Battlefield Expansion Legislation

    Thanks for posting this. Nice to see Petersburg recognizing its history.

    Drew Radtke

  5. #5
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    Re: Battlefield Expansion Legislation

    House of Representatives Passes Forbes’ Bill to Expand Petersburg National Battlefield

    Washington, D.C., Dec 9 - Congressman J. Randy Forbes (VA-04) announced today that the House of Representatives passed the Petersburg National Battlefield Boundary Modification Act, H.R. 3388. Forbes introduced the bill earlier this year, which would modify the boundaries of the current Petersburg National Battlefield to include up to an additional 7,238 acres of land adjacent to its current holdings. No new federal spending is included in the bill. The bill provides federal authority for the park to acquire the land, mainly through donations.

    The bill has been endorsed by The Conservation Fund, the National Parks Conservation Association, and the Civil War Preservation Trust.

    “The Petersburg National Battlefield is cornerstone of this community and represents an important chapter in American history. Not only will the expansion have a positive impact on heritage tourism in the region, but it will help preserve this significant portion of our nation’s heritage,” said Forbes. “I am pleased that the House moved quickly on this legislation. I encourage my colleagues in the Senate to do the same so the legislation can be signed into law by the President.”

    H.R. 3388 would provide federal authority for the 7,238-acre expansion of the Petersburg National Battlefield. The bill would also allow for the exchange of approximately 1.17 acres of land between Fort Lee and the National Park Service. No new federal spending is included in the bill. The expansion is supported by all parties involved, including each surrounding locality.

    H.R. 3388 passed the House of Representatives unanimously on Monday, December 7.

    Online at: http://forbes.house.gov/News/Documen...umentID=160048
    Sincerely,
    Emmanuel Dabney
    Atlantic Guard Soldiers' Aid Society
    http://www.agsas.org

    "God hasten the day when war shall cease, when slavery shall be blotted from the face of the earth, and when, instead of destruction and desolation, peace, prosperity, liberty, and virtue shall rule the earth!"--John C. Brock, Commissary Sergeant, 43d United States Colored Troops

  6. #6
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    Re: Battlefield Expansion Legislation

    House passes bill allowing battlefield park expansion
    By Michael Buettner (Staff Writer)
    Published: December 10, 2009

    The House of Representatives has passed a bill sponsored by U.S. Rep. Randy Forbes (R-4th) that would allow the Petersburg National Battlefield to nearly quadruple in size.

    The House on Monday passed the Petersburg National Battlefield Boundary Modification Act (H.R. 3388), which would change the boundaries of the battlefield to include an additional 7,238 acres adjacent to its present boundaries. The bill expects the expansion to occur mainly through donations and does not include any federal spending to buy the land.

    The bill has been sent on to the Senate, where it has been referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.

    "Not only will the expansion have a positive impact on heritage tourism in the region, but it will help preserve this significant portion of our nation's heritage," Forbes said in a statement. "I am pleased that the House moved quickly on this legislation. I encourage my colleagues in the Senate to do the same so the legislation can be signed into law by the president."

    The Petersburg National Battlefield currently comprises 2,659 acres across a wide swath of land from City Point in Hopewell to Five Forks in Dinwiddie County. If all the land envisioned in the bill is added to the park, it would grow to nearly 10,000 acres, or nearly four times its present size.

    In analyzing the potential cost of the legislation, the Congressional Budget Office estimated that it would cost about $5 million to acquire a portion of the additional land between 2010 and 2014. The CBO said the National Park Service "estimates the entire parcel has a value of about $30 million and would take 15 to 20 years to acquire."

    Based on those estimates, the CBO "expects that over half of the property would be acquired through purchase (about $20 million over the next 15 to 20 years), while the rest would be accomplished through easements and donations."

    Forbes introduced the bill in July and testified in November at a hearing held by the Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests, and Public Lands of the House Committee on Natural Resources.

    Petersburg National Battlefield Park Superintendent Bob Kirby attended that hearing and told The Progress-Index afterward that preserving the additional land is critical before the sprawling development occurs that "we know is coming to the area."

    - Michael Buettner may be reached at 722-5155 or mbuettner@progress-index.com.

    Online at: http://progress-index.com/news/house...nsion-1.475143
    Sincerely,
    Emmanuel Dabney
    Atlantic Guard Soldiers' Aid Society
    http://www.agsas.org

    "God hasten the day when war shall cease, when slavery shall be blotted from the face of the earth, and when, instead of destruction and desolation, peace, prosperity, liberty, and virtue shall rule the earth!"--John C. Brock, Commissary Sergeant, 43d United States Colored Troops

  7. #7
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    Re: Battlefield Expansion Legislation

    Thanks for posting these updates. Very helpful.

    I cannot tell you how important this bill is to the future of Petersburg National Battlefield. In my mind, Petersburg unfortunately has been the red-headed stepchild of the national military parks. The park--and the battle for that matter--has never gotten the attention that it RIGHTLY deserves. The longest siege in American history, the bloodiest campaign of the war, Grant vs. Lee -- there was so much potential for this park but unfortunately city sprawl and lack of funds prevented the park from reaching its full potential. Unfortunately, your average visitor believes that the Crater was the only event that happened during the 10-month campaign.

    Excellent work by CWPT over the years has protected key ground south and west of the park, land that I hope will be incorporated into the park's boundaries and interpreted for the public. The saving of Reams Station and White Oak Road are two of these success stories. And there is still more than can be saved before the big push of developers come knocking -- property around Deep Bottom comes to mind. The desperate hand-to-hand fighting near Fussell's Mill on 16 August 1864 is one of the most fascinating engagements of the campaign, and is nearly forgotten in Civil War history (I'm still waiting for Bryce Suderow's much-promised book on the Deep Bottom campaigns).

    Todd
    Last edited by tberkoff; 12-13-2009 at 12:34 PM. Reason: grammar
    Todd S. Berkoff

  8. #8
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    Re: Battlefield Expansion Legislation

    This information just came through.

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Contact: Jessica Smith - 202-228-5185

    Wednesday, January 27, 2010 Annie Hughes - 202-224-4447

    Webb Introduces Legislation to Strengthen Preservation of
    Petersburg National Battlefield

    Bill would protect an additional 7,200 acres of Civil War battlefield

    WASHINGTON , D.C. – A longtime advocate for Civil War battlefield preservation, U.S. Senator Jim Webb (D-VA) introduced Tuesday the “Petersburg National Boundary Modification Act,” to protect an additional 7,200 acres of historic battlefields. The expansion would make the Petersburg National Battlefield the largest military park in the United States .

    The legislation would give the National Park Service (NPS) authority to acquire 12 battlefields, totaling 7,200 acres, surrounding Petersburg National Battlefield. This expansion of the park was recommended in the National Park Service’s Final General Management Plan in 2005. Much of this historic land is currently susceptible to industrial and residential development.

    “Petersburg saw nearly one quarter of the Civil War fought in its surrounding area, and the preservation of these battlefields is important for future generations to understand and appreciate the significance of our nation’s history,” said Senator Webb . “Next year marks the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, and this legislation serves as an appropriate and timely means to commemorate this significant historical event.”

    “Additionally, investing in historic landmarks benefits the Commonwealth’s tourism sector,” continued Senator Webb . “154,000 visitors come to Petersburg National Battlefi el d each year, generating more than $9 million in local revenue. For this reason, the legislation is important to our continuing efforts to spur tourism and new jobs in Petersburg and the surrounding communities.”

    Since entering the Senate in 2007, Senator Webb has been a strong voice for historical and natural preservation. In 2009, he championed the “Civil War Battlefield Preservation Act,” which renewed The America Battlefield Protection Program and continued the successful federal partnership that has saved nearly 7,000 acres at 17 battlefields sites in Virginia . Webb also cosponsored the successful “Journey Through Hallowed Ground National Heritage Area Act,” to preserve a 175-mile area encompassing eight presidential homes or sites, 15 National Historic Landmarks, 47 historic districts and the largest collection of Revolutionary War sites and Civil War battlefields in America . Additionally, in October, Senator Webb introduced legislation to establish a Commission to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Civil War.
    Sincerely,
    Emmanuel Dabney
    Atlantic Guard Soldiers' Aid Society
    http://www.agsas.org

    "God hasten the day when war shall cease, when slavery shall be blotted from the face of the earth, and when, instead of destruction and desolation, peace, prosperity, liberty, and virtue shall rule the earth!"--John C. Brock, Commissary Sergeant, 43d United States Colored Troops

  9. #9
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    Re: Battlefield Expansion Legislation

    Webb proposes expansion of Petersburg battlefield
    From staff and wire reports)
    Published: January 28, 2010

    PETERSBURG - U.S. Sen. Jim Webb is proposing legislation to add 7,200 acres to Petersburg National Battlefield.

    The Virginia Democrat said the addition of those protected acres would make the Petersburg Civil War site the largest military park in the United States.

    Under the legislation outlined Wednesday, the National Park Service would be authorized to acquire 12 battlefields surrounding the Petersburg attraction. Webb said much of that land is now vulnerable to development.

    Petersburg was the epicenter of some of the bloodiest battles of the Civil War. Some of the fighting was graphically depicted in the book and the movie "Cold Mountain."

    "Petersburg saw nearly one quarter of the Civil War fought in its surrounding area, and the preservation of these battlefields is important for future generations to understand and appreciate the significance of our nation's history," Webb said.

    The senator said investing in historic landmarks also benefits Virginia's tourism industry. Each year, about 154,000 visitors come to Petersburg National Battlefield and generates more than $9 million in local revenue, Webb said. "For this reason, the legislation is important to our continuing efforts to spur tourism and new jobs in Petersburg and the surrounding communities," he said.

    A similar bill, sponsored by U.S. Rep. Randy Forbes, R-4th, was passed by the House of Representatives on Dec. 7 and sent to the Senate. The House bill - which was introduced in July - expects the expansion to occur mainly through donations and does not include any federal spending to buy the land.

    However, the Congressional Budget Office estimated that it would cost about $5 million to acquire a portion of the additional land between 2010 and 2014. The CBO expects that over half of the property would be acquired through purchase at a cost of $20 million over the next 15 to 20 years, while the rest would be accomplished through easements and donations.

    The expansion of the park was recommended in the National Park Service's Final General Management Plan in 2005. Much of the historic land is currently susceptible to industrial and residential development, Webb said.

    The Petersburg National Battlefield currently comprises 2,659 acres across a wide swath of land from City Point in Hopewell to Five Forks in Dinwiddie County. If all the land envisioned in the bill is added to the park, it would grow to nearly 10,000 acres, or nearly four times its present size.

    Online at: http://progress-index.com/news/webb-...field-1.578279
    Sincerely,
    Emmanuel Dabney
    Atlantic Guard Soldiers' Aid Society
    http://www.agsas.org

    "God hasten the day when war shall cease, when slavery shall be blotted from the face of the earth, and when, instead of destruction and desolation, peace, prosperity, liberty, and virtue shall rule the earth!"--John C. Brock, Commissary Sergeant, 43d United States Colored Troops

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