For Immediate Release: 06/13/06
Preservation Groups Join Forces to Save Historic Cunningham Farm at Gettysburg
The Civil War Preservation Trust joins with the Land Conservancy of Adams County to protect an additional 105.8 acres in Gettysburg
(Gettysburg, Pa.) - The Civil War Preservation Trust (CWPT) announced today the preservation of the historic Cunningham Farm at Gettysburg. The 105.8-acre working farm, the site of a hospital both during and after the battle, will be protected with a perpetual conservation easement.
CWPT was invited to help protect the Cunningham Farm by the Land Conservancy of Adams County (LCAC), a local conservation group with a solid record of success. Together, CWPT and LCAC have protected hundreds of acres of historic land associated with the Gettysburg Campaign. In November, CWPT and LCAC collaborated with the Gettysburg Battlefield Preservation Association to place a conservation easement on the 145-acre Daniel Lady Farm.
During the battle of Gettysburg, the Cunningham Farm was used as a hospital for the wounded of General Lafayette McLaws's Confederate division. Today, the farm retains its wartime appearance and the buildings are in an excellent state of preservation. Recognizing the importance of the property, CWPT and LCAC agreed late in 2005 to take immediate steps to preserve the farm.
Although both CWPT and LCAC contributed money toward the conservation easement, the primary source of funding was a Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection grant. "Our organizations were very happy to come together once more to make certain that our history is protected," said Sydney Kuhn, LCAC land conservation coordinator.
Using the barn as a makeshift hospital, a stable door as an operating table, and the house as a kitchen, doctors made use of the farm while the Cunningham family accommodated the wounded as best as they could. Wounded Union soldiers captured during the battle were also treated on the farm. "At least 17 soldiers were interred on the Cunningham Farm, seven of them in unmarked graves and unknown," noted CWPT President James Lighthizer.
The Land Conservancy of Adams County is a member-supported nonprofit land trust, comprised nearly entirely of volunteers. The mission of LCAC is to permanently preserve the rural lands and character of Adams County, Pa. LCAC's website is located at www.lcacnet.org
With more than 70,000 members, CWPT is the largest nonprofit battlefield preservation organization in the United States. Since 1987, the organization has saved more than 22,000 acres of hallowed ground nationwide, including 697 acres at Gettysburg. CWPT's website is www.civilwar.org.