Lawmakers introduce bill to add parts of Newtonia Battlefield to Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield

Published: Dec. 5, 2021 at 3:06 PM CST
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REPUBLIC, Mo. (KY3) - Missouri U.S. senators and representatives have introduced a bill in an effort to make one Civil War site in southwest Missouri part of the National Park Service.

Sens. Roy Blunt and Josh Hawley and Rep. Billy Long introduced the bill Thursday. The legislation calls for adding parts of the Newtonia Battlefield, located in Newton County, to the Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield in Republic.

If this happens, the boundaries of Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield would be expanded and Newtonia Battlefield could become part of the National Park System.

“Newtonia Battlefield would be a valuable addition to the National Park System,” said Sen. Blunt in a news release. “As the site of two Civil War battles, including the last major engagement fought in Missouri, the history of Newtonia is important to gaining a better understanding of the deadliest war in U.S. history and how it impacted our state and nation. Making Newtonia Battlefield a part of the National Park Service has long been a priority for the local community, which has spent years and significant resources to preserve the site.”

”I introduced in the House a bill that would allow the Department of Interior to increase the size of Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield,” said Rep. Long. “These additional 624 acres contain historical relevance to the Battle of Newtonia and should be included in the battlefield. The American people deserve to know the history of our Civil War and visiting the battlefields that helped shape our nation is an important way to learn our history firsthand.”

Two notable Civil War battles were fought on the Newtonia Battlefield. The 1862 battle was among the very few Civil War engagements that included Native Americans fighting on both sides. The battle at Newtonia in 1864 was the last major engagement of the Civil War in Missouri.

The bill is backed by the American Battlefield Trust and Newtonia Battlefields Protection Association. CLICK HERE to read the bill.

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