AUGUST 8, 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
National Park Service News Release
National Park Service Seeks Public Comment on the Shepherdstown Battlefield Special
Resource Study/Boundary Study/Environmental Assessment
WASHINGTON - Today, the National Park Service (NPS) released the Shepherdstown Battlefield
Special Resource Study/Boundary Study/Environmental Assessment for public comment through
October 3, 2014. The NPS will hold two public meetings during the comment period.
The NPS preferred alternative -Alternative 2A- proposes a boundary adjustment of Antietam
National Battlefield to include the Shepherdstown battlefield. The special resource study
determined that the battlefield does not meet NPS criteria to become its own stand-alone
unit of the national park system.
During the public meetings the NPS planning team will explain the study outcomes,
answer public questions and take public comments. Historian Thomas McGrath, author of
Shepherdstown: Last Clash of the Antietam Campaign, September 19-20 1862, will present
research on the events that occurred during the two-day Shepherdstown battle. McGrath
served as an advisor to the NPS planning team, providing historical information and research.
The meetings are as follows:
Tuesday September 9, 5 to 8 p.m.
(with presentations at 5 and 6:30 p.m.)
Antietam National Battlefield Visitor Center
5831 Dunker Church Road, Sharpsburg, Md.p>
Thursday, September 11, 5 to 8 p.m.
(with presentations at 5 and 6:30 p.m.)
Clarion Hotel & Conference Center
233 Lowe Drive, Shepherdstown, W.Va.
Congress directed the NPS to complete the special resource and boundary studies
to evaluate the national significance of Shepherdstown battlefield and its suitability
for inclusion in the national park system. The law specifically directs the NPS to assess
the suitability and feasibility of designating Shepherdstown battlefield as a stand-alone
unit of the NPS or adjusting the boundary of either Antietam National Battlefield or Harpers
Ferry National Historical Park to include Shepherdstown battlefield. The special resource study
evaluates Shepherdstown battlefield as a potential new stand-alone unit while the boundary
study evaluates its potential addition to Antietam or Harpers Ferry.
The public comment period is open August 8 to October 3, 2014. The NPS invites
the public to share thoughts on the alternatives, the proposed boundary and to identify
concerns with the study. Comments will be accepted electronically at
www.parkplanning.nps.gov/SHBA, orally or in writing at the public meetings and
written comments can also be by mailed to:
Regional Director, National Capital Region
C/O Jordan Hoaglund-Planning
National Park Service, Denver Service Center
12795 West Alameda Parkway, PO Box 25287
Denver, CO 80225-0287
Mailed comments must be postmarked by October 3, 2014, to receive consideration.
Before including a personal address, phone number, e-mail address, or other personal identifying information in a written comment, commenters should be aware that their entire comment-including their personal identifying information-may be made publicly available at any time. While anyone wishing to comment may ask the NPS in their comment to withhold their personal identifying information from public review, the NPS cannot guarantee it will be able to do so.
For more information visit parkplanning.nps.gov/SHBA.
Click Here to Send an email to SBPA
CEMENT MILL PURCHASE CELEBRATED
On Saturday morning, April 5, a sign was erected and dedicated to commemorate the purchase
and preservation of the Historic Cement Mill property. This property is part of the site of
the 1862 Battle of Shepherdstown. The property contains structures from an 1829 Cement Mill
that was the beginning of the Industrial Revolution in Jefferson County. The structures
include the ruins of the mill, six kilns on the bank of the Potomac River, a large kiln south
of River Road and the remnants of an office building. Some of the kilns on the river show
damage from Union artillery shells sustained during the Battle of Shepherdstown.
In late 2011, the Civil War Trust purchased 18 acres of the Cement Mill property and in late
2013, another small parcel, contiguous to the Cement Mill property, was purchased. The entire
property was deeded to the Jefferson County Historic Landmarks Commission (HLC). Ultimately,
the HLC intends to donate the parcel to the National Park Service (NPS). A conservation
easement has been placed on the property and it has been included in the National Register of
The total cost of the purchases was $445,000. The funds to complete the purchases came from
the Land and Water Conservation Fund administered by the NPS, WV Transportation Enhancement
Grants, the Civil War Trust, Save Historic Antietam Foundation Inc., the office of Governor
Earl Ray Tomblin through the efforts of then-Delegate John Doyle, the Shepherdstown Battlefield
Preservation Association Inc., and the American Battlefield Protection Program of the NPS.
The Civil War Trust has negotiated to purchase another parcel contiguous to the Cement Mill
property which will result in the preservation of 20.2 acres of the original Cement Mill
property. Importantly, the Cement Mill property is contiguous to 59 acres already saved through
the use of conservation easements. In total, 104 acres of the core of site of the Battle of
Shepherdstown have been saved and preserved.
This effort has been the result of the work of the Shepherdstown Battlefield Preservation
Association Inc (SBPA) and its individual members. SBPA is a non-profit corporation,
organized in 2004 dedicated to saving and preserving the core of the site of the Battle of
Shepherdstown. Slightly more than $1 million has been raised through grants and membership
contributions during the last ten years.