Wednesday, October 23, 2013

42 acres added to Kennesaw battlefield

Hays field between fortified hills (TPL)
A 42-acre site that includes Nodine's Hill, scene of fierce fighting in June 1864, has been added to Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park, the Trust for Public Land and the National Park Service announced Wednesday.

The land includes remnant Union entrenchments, rifle pits, and cannon placements, according to the announcement. The battle occurred as Federal forces maneuvered to Atlanta, which they took by early September. The hill is named for the Union commander whose brigade assaulted the Kennesaw position June 20 and June 21, 1864.

Known as Hays Farm, the property is adjacent to a 58-acre, 40-home subdivision built after an unsuccessful conservation attempt in 2005, according to the trust.

Arrow points to acquisition. Map courtesy of Georgia Battlefields Association
A a Civil War Trust post by historian Philip Secrist refers to Nodine's Hill: "Kirby’s and Nodine’s brigades gained and lost the hill several times on June 20. Reinforced the next day, and under direct orders from an impatient (Union Gen. Oliver O. Howard, the two tried again, succeeding this time in holding the ground despite counterattacks (by Confederates) and heavy concentrated barrages of artillery. The fighting here on this and nearby hills in mid-June was especially close and personal, combative and aggressive – often hand-to-hand and frequently continuing into the night."

Funding for the $1.76 million addition came from the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), officials said.

“(The park) is a great destination for both history enthusiasts and nature lovers, and this addition to the park offers something for every visitor,” said Curt Soper, Georgia state director for The Trust for Public Land, in a statement. “It was particularly important to protect Nodine’s Hill in the Civil War’s sesquicentennial years and permanently preserve the site of fierce fighting in the Atlanta Campaign.”

• More details on acquisition

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