Is this a reason not to visit them? The OP did not ask about only wanting to visit well-preserved sites.
Originally Posted by mmescher
To not take the Sunken Road walking tour at Fredericksburg because the town has grown up to it's edge would be missing what is a great experience. It includes a walk through one of the most picturesque National Cemeteries associated with the Civil War. That's also a very quite older neighborhood that harmonizes well with the historic surroundings. Yeah, a pity it wasn't preserved intact, but that's no reason to forgo a visit.
... town has swallowed this part and the only remnant is a small part of the stone wall that looks directly into back yards not many feet away.
Yeah, very unfortunate, but two nice regimental monuments nearby and the church still retains some battle damage. Serves as a good model on why perservation is important and should be visited for that reason.
The area around Salem Church is, with the exception of the church itself, buried under strip malls and similar development.
So if you haven't been there in years, why do you even feel you are qualified to write about it? You mentioned the Civil War Trust at the Slaughter Pen Farm, but don't bother mentioning the site of one of the greatest preservation victories of recent years at Chancellorsville: the Civil War Trust's property which saves a hefty portion of the first day's field. Yeah, there's a new upscale housing development nearby. Ouch.... I can see somebody's roof! Oh, poo! Power lines cross the property! Why'd they even bother saving it?
I haven't been there (Chancellorsville) in years so I don't know how much development has further encroached on it.
Huh? Did you miss Chancellorsville clearing. About a mile long and half a mile wide. Historically there were less trees there making it a plain. Chancellorsville clearing includes Fairview Heights from which you can see the distant Hazel Grove area. Fairview Height's impressive set of artillery lunettes are part of that sweeping vista. How'd you manage to miss it. It's only a short drive from the visitor center. Guess you didn't take the complete driving tour.
The main battlefield is still heavily wooded second growth so you have none of the sweeping vistas of some of the more open fields.
This one puzzles me. The woods at Chancellorsville are nothing like they were during the battle. Visibility was barely 5 yards in 1863, not 50 yards. Todays old growth forest doesn't give the visitor any idea of what the interlaced thickets were like during the battle.
...around the visitor center you can walk in the woods a short distance and get some idea of what it was like to try to conduct an organized battle in an area where it was hard to see more than 50 yards in the woods.
Again, I'm sorry, but I think your preceptions of these magnificent battlefields are "incredibly damaged". Its not ALL about what modern buildings can or cannot be seen from them. Look at the ground under your feet. It was soaked with human blood. Compared to say, Seven Pines (Fair Oaks) or the Atlanta area battlefields, I'd say that the F-burg area battlefields are in a remarkably good state of preservation. And downtown Oldtown Fredericksburg is to die for (... and many did).
Of the two, it is hard to say which is the more interesting because they are both so incredibly damaged.
This one made me laugh. The core area of Spotsylvania is the most well preserved of all the F-burg area battlefields yet you somehow managed to not visit it. Again, I have to ask... why do you feel qualified to write a vistor's review of these fields?
... and I haven't been to Spotsylvania.
The overall impression of your post is that none of the F-burg area fields are really worth a visit. Just hit 'em on a quick drive-by. Your entire post shows a deep misunderstanding of the Central Virginia battlefields which you admit you've not visited in-depth.
A possible option is to visit as much of all of them as your time allows, enjoying the remaining portions of each.
Yes, its nice to have a pristine battlefield, but your missing the whole point of preservation if you're just concerned with what's visible or not visible on the horizon. Again, look at the ground under your feet.
Last edited by Bitter_Bierce; 04-13-2012 at 08:07 PM.
- Clement Nottingway
All are lunatics, but he who can analyze his delusions is called a philosopher. - Ambrose Bierce