Preservation News: Cold Harbor

Emerging Civil War

The Cold Harbor battlefield is the most popular of the many sites in the Richmond National Battlefield Park. This is probably due to several factors, which include the preserved earthworks (impressive) or the legend that 7,000 men were killed in 15 minutes (incorrect). In 1864, the battlefield extended roughly 7 miles. The frustrating thing for visitors and interpreters alike has been that that until recently only a small portion of the battlefield was preserved and open to the public. The Park contained a small visitor center and was positioned roughly at the center of the battlefield; however it was not the scene of the most vicious fighting that occurred on June 3, 1864. One thing the Park did have was a portion of the generally unappreciated action that took place on June 1.

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