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New Market Heights Marker
Noel Kline
Civil War  |  News

American Battlefield Trust Lauds Inclusion of USCT Sites on Annual Preservation Virginia 'Endangered' List

Lack of preservation, interpretation at Civil War sites where units of United States Colored Troops fought prevents broad public understanding of critical elements of American history

Mary Koik, (202) 367-1861 x7231

Jim Campi, (202) 367-1861 x7205 

(Washington, D.C.) — The American Battlefield Trust lauds the inclusion of a listing for Civil War Battlefields at which United States Colored Troops (USCT) fought within Preservation Virginia’s 2021 report on the Commonwealth’s Most Endangered Historic Places. The annual listing, part of a program stretching across two decades, comes during Preservation Month, celebrated each May.  

The report specifically cites New Market Heights, a battlefield the Trust is steadily working to protect and subsequently examining for interpretive opportunities, as well as St. Mary’s/Samaria Church Battlefield, which is threatened with the expansion of an existing landfill. It rightly notes that“Educating the public about these battlefields and the contributions of the USCT, and investments at the federal, state and local levels is necessary to help illuminate these diverse stories of resilience, bravery, and empowerment that have been excluded from the traditional Civil War narrative.” 

“The story of New Market Heights is remarkable, and yet too few Americans know about the day for which 14 Black soldiers received the Medal of Honor,” said Trust president David Duncan. “Nor is it the only example of such bravery that we can elevate and spotlight through preservation. The American Battlefield Trust is committed uplifting the memory of the 200,000 Black soldiers who fought to create a more perfect to Union during this nation’s first century.”  

Other listed sites include: Association Drive Historic District in Reston; Conner House in Manassas Park; Fort Wool in Hampton Roads; Green Book Sites statewide; Turkey Run House in Midlothian; Mount Calvary Cemetery Complex in Portsmouth; Mount Pleasant Baptist Church in Gainesville; River Farm in Alexandria; and Shockoe Hill African Burying Ground in Richmond. 

The American Battlefield Trust is dedicated to preserving America’s hallowed battlegrounds and educating the public about what happened there and why it matters today.  The nonprofit, nonpartisan organization has protected more than 53,000 acres associated with the Revolutionary War, War of 1812 and Civil War. Learn more at www.battlefields.org.  

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