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Date: August 6, 2009
Contact: Anne Strong
Telephone: (301) 279-9697

History Associates Interprets Two Virginia Battlefields

History Associates has guided the installation of seven miles of walking trails and twenty-five wayside exhibits on more than 400 acres of land on portions of two Civil War battlefields which saw decisive Confederate victories in December 1862 and May 1863.

Working in collaboration with the Civil War Preservation Trust (CWPT), History Associates senior historian Garry Adelman, assisted by research historian Halley Fehner, conducted research, drafted the interpretive script, proposed the trail system, and secured the imagery for the wayside exhibits. “Saving these battlefields from imminent development was a significant preservation victory,” said CWPT spokesperson Jim Campi. “But before History Associates’ compelling interpretation of these sites, very few people had an opportunity to really understand the significant events that occurred on this hallowed landscape.”

At Fredericksburg’s Slaughter Pen Farm Battlefield, History Associates worked closely with the National Park Service and CWPT to tell a story of gallantry and lost opportunities. On December 13, 1862, Union troops broke through the Confederate line but were forced to retreat for want of reinforcements. The Union had lost its only real chance for victory at Fredericksburg. Five Medals of Honor were awarded to Union troops for deeds of valor at the Slaughter Pen.

At the First Day at Chancellorsville Battlefield, History Associates described how Confederate general Robert E. Lee seized the strategic initiative by pushing Union forces into the tangled Wilderness of Virginia. With the Union troops bogged down amidst the tangle, Lee unleashed a series of punishing attacks which pushed the bloodied and defeated Union troops back to where they had started.

Using federal, state, and local matching funds, CWPT’s members’ donations have a multiplying effect which has enabled CWPT to forever preserve more than 25,000 acres of battlefield land across seventeen states. For more information about CWPT visit History Associates and the CWPT have worked together on six CWPT battlefields, as well as other projects related to planning and funding issues.

About History Associates
For more than thirty years the historians and archivists at History Associates have demonstrated that history is valuable in the market as well as the marketplace of ideas. They provide professional corporate histories, exhibit content, interpretive planning, historical research, archival services, and collections management services to clients throughout the United States and around the world. History Associates strives to be The Best Company in History®, serving corporate, government, legal, and nonprofit clients from its headquarters in Rockville, Maryland. For more information, call (301) 279-9697 or visit

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