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Thursday, 8 June 2017

Save Slaughter Pen Farm

Save Slaughter Pen Farm

For decades, most people who made the trip to the Fredericksburg battlefield, in Virginia, learned about the lopsided assaults on the Sunken Road at Marye’s Heights. Visitors experienced one facet of the battle to the exclusion of the fighting on the southern end of the battlefield, where the Confederates suffered the majority of their casualties and where no less than six medals of honor were awarded for heroic actions. Most people even those who consider themselves Civil War buffs had never even heard of the Slaughter Pen Farm.

For decades, the scene of some of the most ferocious fighting at Fredericksburg was completely inaccessible. Recall on December 13, 1862, Union General Ambrose Burnside ordered General William B. Franklin to attack Stonewall Jackson's position on the heights south of Fredericksburg. The ensuing fight lasted several hours leaving 9,000 Americans killed, wounded, or captured more than half of the casualties of the entire battle on the muddy farm fields we now call the Slaughter Pen Farm.

Just over ten years ago, thanks to the help of our generous members, we purchased the Slaughter Pen, preserving its wartime character and ensuring the next generation of Americans won't forget this pivotal part of Fredericksburg. This was no ordinary feat, even by our standards. The price a staggering $12 million made it the largest transaction we'd ever undertaken, but well worth the cost when weighed against the historical significance of this hallowed ground.

Thankfully, our friends and supporters thought so too. As it stands today, I am happy to report that we have paid off nearly 70% of the cost of this land. This is a remarkable feat, and I cannot thank you enough for your enduring dedication to the cause.

Yet, we still have more to go. In 2017, thanks to many generous bequests, we only owe $135,000 to meet our annual commitment. Will you please help us meet our annual commitment to protect this irreplaceable piece of hallowed ground? Please help by donating to save the Slaughter Pen Farm.

Video: Union Attack at the Slaughter Pen Farm

Battle Map: Fredericksburg

Article: The True Battle for Fredericksburg

Battlefield: Fredericksburg

The Civil War Trust