With a new Congress comes a renewed push for the inclusion of the Mill Springs Battlefield into the U.S. National Park Service.
In recognition of the 151st anniversary of the Battle of Mill Springs — also known as the Battle of Logan Crossroads — U.S. Congressman Harold “Hal” Rogers (KY-05) reintroduced on Tuesday bipartisan legislation to honor and preserve the historic Civil War site.
Rogers has long been a supporter of including the 500-acre battlefield into the National Park Service, and this newest bill has U.S. Representatives John Yarmuth (KY-03), Brett Guthrie (KY-05) and Andy Barr (KY-06) as cosponsors.
“This year I am proud to reintroduce legislation to commemorate the historic Battle of Mill Springs and honor those who gave their lives on Kentucky soil,” Rogers said in a press release. “This battle notably affected the outcome of the Civil War, and impacted our nation’s history.
“While the battlefield is already a national historic landmark, and a treasured part of our community, I am proud to stand with members of the Kentucky delegation in seeking to include this historic site into the National Park Service so that we may ensure its preservation for years to come,” Rogers added.
The Battle of Mill Springs occurred on January 19, 1862 in Pulaski and Wayne counties and was the first significant victory for the Union Army in the west. The Confederate defeat at Mill Springs blazed a trail for Union troops to move from Kentucky into Tennessee.
In addition, the battle also marks the death of Confederate General Felix Zollicoffer, who has a memorial dedicated to him at the site.
For years, the Mill Springs Battlefield Association (MSBA) has led efforts to acquire, preserve and maintain the battlefield for future generations.
New Mill Springs Battlefield Executive Director Stephen McKinney is prepared to work toward making the Mill Springs Battlefield a national park — which involves a massive undertaking to ensure the site and its operations meet all requirements as such.