Rogers Introduces Legislation to Honor and Preserve Mill Springs Battlefield
On Tuesday, January 15, 2013, U.S. Congressman Harold “Hal” Rogers (KY-05) recognized the 151th anniversary of the Battle of Mill Springs by reintroducing bipartisan legislation to honor and preserve the historic Civil War site, Mill Springs Battlefield. Occurring on January 19, 1862 in Pulaski and Wayne counties, the Battle of Mill Springs was the first significant victory for the Union Army in the west and blazed a trail for Union troops to move from Kentucky into Tennessee. The Mill Springs Battlefield Association (MSBA) has led efforts to acquire, preserve and maintain this battlefield for future generations; to date, over 50,000 Civil War enthusiasts have visited the 500-acre battlefield. U.S. Reps John Yarmuth (KY-03), Brett Guthrie (KY-05) and Andy Barr (KY-06) joined as cosponsors to this bill.
“This year I am proud to reintroduce legislation to commemorate the historic Battle of Mill Springs and honor those who gave their lives on Kentucky soil. This battle notably affected the outcome of the Civil War, and impacted our nation’s history,” said Rogers. “While the battlefield is already a National Historic Landmark, and a treasured part of our community, I am proud to stand with Members of the Kentucky delegation in seeking to include this historic site into the National Park Service so that we may ensure its preservation for years to come.”
Rogers reintroduced binding legislation (H.R. 298) that directs the National Park Service (NPS) to conduct a study to evaluate incorporating the battlefield into the national park system. If approved by Congress, the federally-led analysis would consider the economic and educational impacts that inclusion of Mill Springs would have on surrounding communities, impact to landowners, and cost of federal government operation. Currently, the Mill Springs Battlefield is being preserved and maintained through private sources, but adding the Mill Springs Battlefield site into the National Park Service will ensure its preservation for generations to come. Previously, Rogers secured over $1.35 million in federal funding to enhance the visitor experience at Mill Springs.
The Battle of Mill Springs was the second largest battle to take place in Kentucky and the first significant Union victory in the western theater of the Civil War. In addition, the battle also marks the death of Confederate General Felix Zollicoffer. The battle highly contributed to the outcome of the war, as the main Confederate defensive line that was anchored in eastern Kentucky was broken so that the Union army could move through Kentucky and into Tennessee for the major battles at Fort Donelson and Shiloh, Tennessee.
Rogers has served Kentucky’s 5th Congressional District since 1981. With a focus on economic development, job creation, fighting illegal drugs and preserving Appalachia’s natural treasures, he has a reputation for listening to his constituents and fighting for the region he represents. For more information visit www.halrogers.house.gov<http://www.halrogers.house.gov/> .