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Trust to save "Jackson's flank attack" property

All the battlefield preservation campaigns that the Civil War Preservation Trust has initiated have been important, but the current one may top them all. The Trust has announced an effort to purchase the piece of the Chancellorsville battlefield where Gen. Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson made his famous
flank attack, an audacious 12-mile silent march around the Army of the Potomac.

The cost of the 80-acre farm is $1.525 million and much of that will be covered by Virginia and federal matching grants if the Trust can raise $516,667 by Dec. 31, when the state matching grants expire.

Trust president Jim Lighthizer is well known for his hard-sell campaigns for each of the properties the Trust has wanted to buy, and his appeals to save hallowed ground have worked. More than 28,000 acres of battlefield land have been purchased by the Trust in the last decade. Most of it has been or will be transferred to the National Park Service.

He refers to the Jackson flank attack property as "the most historically significant piece of hallowed ground CWPT has ever saved," and "the most dazzling jewel in the CWPT's long and impressive history of preserving hallowed ground."

I agree. I have been to Chancellorsville many times and Jackson's flank attack has always fascinated me, but most of the land where he led his troops was in private hands. We could only look at it from a distance.

I am going to send the Trust a check. I want to be able to walk that land.

By Linda Wheeler  |  December 21, 2009; 10:34 AM ET
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