Dr. Timothy B. Smith has teamed up with the University of Tennessee Press to publish an interesting book titled; The Golden Age of Battlefield Preservation: The Decade of the 1890s and the Establishment of America’s First Five Military Parks. Professor Smith details the Golden Age of Battlefield Preservation, the decade of the 1890s, when Congress created and funded the first five Civil War military parks.
Care to take a guess what were the first five Civil War parks? If you said ‘Gettysburg’ you’d be correct but Gettysburg was not the first park, Chickamauga-Chattanooga was. In fact, of the first five Civil War battlefields to get a national park, three were in the Western Theatre of the war: Chickamauga-Chattanooga, Shiloh and Vicksburg.