National Park Service Awards $95,887 Grant For Ruff’s Mill Battlefield Research!

The Friends of the Concord Covered Bridge Historic District has been working with the LAMAR Institute out of Savannah on a proposal to research the Civil War battles fought around the Historic District in July of 1864. I am pleased to announce that the National Park Service has awarded a grant to the LAMAR Institute to carry out this research as part of the American Battlefield Protection Program. This project will conduct historical and archeological investigation to locate and delineate the boundaries of the Civil War Ruff’s Mill Battlefield. Part of the Smyrna line, the Confederate defenses at Ruff’s Mill were constructed in part by enslaved African Americans in the summer of 1864. A Union assault occurred on the evening of July 4th, and forced the Confederates to abandon the entire defensive line.

The American Battlefield Protection Program (ABPP) has awarded 16 Battlefield Preservation Planning Grants totaling $1.17 million to assist in the preservation and protection of America’s battlefields. The funds will support a variety of projects at conflict sites in 10 states. This year’s grants provide funding for projects at endangered battlefields from the Spanish contact period, Revolutionary War, War of 1812, Civil War, and World War II. Funded projects include archeology, battlefield mapping, cultural resource survey work, documentation, planning, education, and interpretation. The Battlefield Preservation Planning Grants fund projects conducted by state, local, and tribal governments, nonprofit organizations, and educational institutions. ABPP’s mission is to safeguard and preserve significant American battlefields for present and future generations as symbols of individual sacrifice and national heritage.

The LAMAR Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit established in 1982. Its mission is to conduct archaeological and historical research in the Southeastern United States and to advance public archaeological education.

You are invited to participate with The LAMAR Institute and The Friends of the Concord Covered Bridge Historic District and in an exciting pursuit to locate the 1864 Battle of Ruff’s Mill and to identify and interpret its components across the landscape. The project, funded by a grant from the American Battlefield Protection Program, National Park Service, will incorporate historical research, archaeology, and public outreach.

We are currently seeking the following participants:
• Landowners in the Concord Covered Bridge Area who wish to be included in the project.
• Individuals who may have artifact collections from that area and time period and are willing to have them photographed.
• Educators, preservationists, and community members interested in brainstorming about how this project and its information can benefit the community in terms of education and outreach. (Potential topics: STEM; African American role in the military; content for trails and beltway signage; and many others.)

We invite those interested to come to the project kick-off meeting:

Monday, November 25, 2019, 6:30-7:30 p.m.
Smyrna Public Library, 100 Village Green Circle, Smyrna, GA 30080.

Contact: Rita Elliott,

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