View Full Version : Perryville Battlefield Endangered

chad greene
03-26-2008, 12:30 PM
Hello All,
Anyone who has been at Perryville knows what a pristine site it is, but now we have our first big problem. This article appeared in the Danville paper today. We have been fighting this for a 3 months but Danville Planning and Zoning finally caved on Wed. I urge all of you to call or write the City Council at the City Hall of Perryville, Kentucky and let them know that this is a bad idea. This farm is located on Hayes Mayes Rd. directly behind the battlefield. The light and noise from this development will impact the historic site.
We are asking that you call the Perryville City Council at 859-332-8361 and voice your opinion. The city council meeting will be held on April 3rd at 7:00 P.M. at the city building on Merchant's Row. Make the meeting if you can. Let them know the nation is watching and we value our hallowed grounds. Civil War Battlefields can never be replaced sub-divisions can be moved elsewhere. Do we need more sprawl or beautiful green fields?
ACT NOW- Hundreds are responding to this call to arms.

Zoning request approved for land in Historic Perryville

A controversial rezoning request made by zoning commissioner Pete Coyle in November was narrowly approved Wednesday by a 5-4 vote. Coyle submitted the request to the Danville-Boyle County Planning and Zoning Committee to redesignate several acres of land zoned as agricultural to highway-commercial, single-family and multi-family housing, which he plans to sell for development purposes.

The property is on West Second Street, and a part of the Coyle family farm.

Since the request was made, residents and those interested in preserving the area's historical attractiveness attended meetings to voice concerns on how future developments would be overseen. Concerns were brought up about the possibility of Coyle selling the property, moving to Florida and leaving it in the hands of a developer who may not have the same passion for the historical value of the area as Coyle is said to.

In January, P&Z Director Paula Bary advised Coyle and his engineer to come up with restrictions and covenants for the committee to review, which they did.

Although Coyle was not present Wednesday for the continuance of the discussion, his engineer and newly-appointed attorney were. Several committee members were confused about Coyle's statement, recorded from January's meeting, indicating he was fine with giving the Perryville Battlefield and the City of Perryville all the rights of overseeing development in the area.

Doug Gooch, with AGE Engineering, said what Coyle meant was after the covenants and restrictions were accepted, "Coyle is willing to turn over enforcement of covenants and restrictions, all the enforcement rights," but said the design of the buildings would be maintained within the restrictions.

Daughters of the Confederates' Spokesperson Sherry Robinson, who has been in opposition to most of the idea, told the commission there were still questions as to why certain things were not in writing that Coyle had "given a gentleman's word" about. She said things like an agricultural easement or creation of a walking path on Old Mackville Road were not spelled out.

State funding sought by committee

Previously, Coyle said he was in talks with the battlefield's preservation committee, who was working with the state to secure funding on taking control of some of the land. Chris Kolakowski, director of the Perryville Enhancement Project, said that movement with the state has since stalled, but that his group and the state parks department were still interested.

Perryville Mayor Anne Sleet said talks about enforcing any covenants or restrictions has not been discussed.

"Our attorney said this was not to even be discussed until a plat was finalized through P&Z," Sleet said. She said Perryville is still working to create an ordinance to protect its historical buildings.

"I feel like Mr. Coyle is being asked to make a lot of commitments, but no one is willing to make one back to him," said Commissioner Jeffrey Baird.

An exchange took place between Baird and Kolakowski about a discrepancy in the difference between the city of Perryville being listed on the National Registry of Historical Districts, and the core battlefield preservation area. Kolakowski did demonstrate the entire city of Perryville is on the registry, but added Coyle seemed to be doing his job.

"Two independent federal agencies have identified it as nationally historic. But I would say that Pete (Coyle) has done a good job of laying it out for us, by offering to let us enforce the area," Kolakowski said.

Chairman Gary Chidester said most of the concerns would be met when the plats are presented to the board for approval, but offered some tough love for Coyle. He said Coyle had placed his engineer in a very tough position by not being at the meeting.

"He needed to be here to talk to these people, and I think it's unfortunate that he's not. We recommended he be here," Chidester said.

Baird said he felt Coyle was making the appropriate concessions, and felt the restrictions are in very good faith. He made the motion to accept the zone change with the exception that the wording be changed that the covenants can be enforced by the battlefield and the City of Perryville, not the design of the development.

Jerry Leber seconded the motion, and also in favor were Hugh Mahon, George Johnson and John Forsythe.

Committee members Chidester, Tommy Norville, Chris Hill and Becky Scholtz were opposed.

Copyright The Advocate-Messenger 2008

03-27-2008, 12:37 AM
I posted this already but Ill do it again.



Call em and let em know how you feel about this issue. We can do this. We reenact to preserve the past and our history, now is the time to do more than just dress up and shoot at each other. OFF AND ON people, lets get busy..


03-28-2008, 06:29 AM
I have already called to oppose the construction, I was on the phone for only a couple of min. and the receptionist was very plesent even though I am sure she had alot of calls before me and more after. If you have or haven't been there then you still need to call and oppose this as it is a very beautiful area and the men who fought and died there deserve the pease.

03-31-2008, 09:37 AM
Fellers and Ladies.
This is very easy, only takes literally 2 minutes of your time. Hardcore, progressive, mainstream, or spec 'tater- we are all in this for the love of our history. Do something about it and make the phone call.
Drew Gruber

04-02-2008, 11:54 PM
http://www.kentucky.com/news/state/story/363927.html This article ran in today's Lexington Hearald Leader Enjoy

04-03-2008, 11:10 AM
150 Calls.. Great going.. Lets GET BUSY!!

04-03-2008, 08:29 PM
Hi everyone,

Sent out a mass email to all the history department faculty, students, and friends here at PSU Altoona a few days ago to call in.

As soon as anybody here's what came of the meeting, could you let us know?

Thank you,

chad greene
04-03-2008, 08:36 PM
Good Fellows and Gracious Ladies,
Round one is won!!!!!!
The good and wise Perryville City Council persons voted down the zoning change!
Caution this is just round one. We must remain vigilant about this battlefield as well as all others. We here at Perryville THANK YOU for your support and enthussiasm that surely brought on much of this vote. I must ask you to continue to voice your opinions to the Perryville City Council to attend to a historic preservation ordanance that they have been considering for some time. This is so important to protect the viewsheds around our pristine battlefield.
Again let me thank you from the bottom of my heart for helping save our hallowed ground.
I would further invite you to come and visit and participate at the battlefield. Please do not think that the reenactment is the only time you can come. The battlefield has all the means to help with your living history impressions and they will make you most at home.
As Facilities Director for the Perryville Enhancement Program I am in charge of all the buildings on Merchant's Row. We would gladly accept any help you would offer there and if you have experience with hammers, paintbrushes, or plain hard work we could use you. Certainly Dr. Polk's Office and house soon will be available for living history impressions. We welcome you here. This is truly yours. Fairly Earned!!
If the need comes for us to call and support your efforts for preservation let us know. We owe you one and will gladly return the favor.
This fight for us will not be the last. We are in a society that wants to pave over and build up everything. Let us set this pristine place aside! Let the world grow up around us.
Your Pard,
Chad Greene

04-03-2008, 08:53 PM
That is fantastic news to hear Round one has been won!! I've never been to the Perryville Battlefield, and hope that one day soon I can make that venture from PA to KY to see it's beauty, and to pay my respects to those soldiers who fought and died at Perryville.

04-03-2008, 11:46 PM
THree Cheers and a Tiger.. another blow struck for Preservation!

04-04-2008, 09:07 PM
Thank you so much for posting these articles! Everything is clear to me now. From some of the postings on the other thread, I had the impression that a developer had already purchased the property and now the rules were being somehow unfairly changed. But now I see that the property is currently farmland and had not even been re-zoned for building! As the article states, there was "no evidence to suggest a zone change was necessary", that "development would have a negative effect on the roads surrounding the battlefield and the city’s infrastructure" and this is the last piece of undeveloped land within the city. It is great that the proposal was turned down. I would hate to see the Perryville battlefield end up like much of the Franklin battlefield.

04-10-2008, 06:43 PM
I would hate to see the Perryville battlefield end up like much of the Franklin battlefield... .... or Seven Pines, or Ox Hill, or Savage Station.... :(

Craig L Barry
04-14-2008, 04:15 PM
Good job, ladies and gentlemen. This story is planned for upcoming edition of Camp Chase Gazette. This is a rough draft. It will read (about) as follows:
Another major battle took place recently at Perryville, Kentucky. This one was a victory for both North and South alike, as well a great example of how effective a grassroots campaign can be. Answering an Internet based "call to arms," from the Authentic Campaigners and The Civil War Re-enactors Forums, Civil War living historians from all over the country deluged Perryville City Hall with telephone calls expressing their opposition. As of April 2, city council had received over 169 phone calls against the proposed development. As Paul Calloway, founder of the Authentic Campaigners Forum, put it, “We helped stop that Perryville preservation threat - now that’s real news, how re-enactors calling each other to action via a website had an impact on a threatened Civil War battlefield. The (local) newspaper articles even mentioned the "Call to Arms" as being instrumental in getting the development stopped.”

The Battle of Perryville, fought October 8, 1862, finalized Confederate General Braxton Bragg's famous "Kentucky Invasion" with a tactical victory for the Confederacy, but an eventual retreat that set the stage for the end-of-year Battle of Stones River outside Murfreesboro, Tennessee just shy of three months later. Kentucky never left the Union, though it did share two state governments (one US, one CS) for a time. The battle was the largest fought in Kentucky during the Civil War. It is widely considered hallowed ground, and one of the very few western theater reenactments held on the actual battlefield land.

The latest battle for Perryville, Kentucky had its beginnings when the City Council received a proposal from the planning commission to approve re-zoning of 34 acres for single family dwellings near the Kentucky state battlefield park. The original battle was not fought on this parcel of land per se, but the housing would be in “line of sight” from the state battlefield park where large national Civil War (re)enactments have been held in 2002 and 2006. In fact, the land in question was close enough to be used for parking during the 2006 (re)enactment. As a result of the proposal, the CWPT added Perryville to its list of top ten endangered battlefields. Immediately thereafter, spurred on by new threads started on the two largest Civil War internet forums for a “call to arms”, re-enactors united and calls began pouring into the Perryville City Council. On April 3, the Perryville City Council voted down the proposed rezoning project. While buoyed by the recent success, of even greater significance is the cooperation between all segments of the Civil War reenactment hobby to achieve a major victory for battlefield preservation, a fight that we still carry on. Battlefield preservation is more than donating funds once in a while to a Civil War preservation trust, cleaning up debris at the battlefield or re-enacting on the land. And this victory showed what the hobby can do when the bickering stops and we all pull together as a team. Kudos to all re-enactors who answered the call to arms.

Doug Cooper
04-19-2008, 03:48 PM
Perhaps it would be more useful to have preservation articles in CCG that deal with important issues that are NOT resolved...and links to CWPT and other organizations in the magazine so all your readership can get involved early. Victories are nice, but let's reserve space for current battles as well. Lead, rather than follow, since CCG is "the voice of CW Reenacting."

You might start with CWPT's Top Ten Most Endangered Battlefields and pick one or two to concentrate on for 2008-2009. It might make a real difference and elevate CCG to the level of advocate for preservation.