CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Around 51 acres near a former battlefield in Chesterfield is now considered protected land, in the county’s effort to preserve the site of a key Civil War battle.

The conserved land will be added to the adjacent 10-acre Ware Bottom Church Battlefield Park, land donated to the National Parks Service in the 1930s.

“Chesterfield Parks and Recreation is pleased that this CRLC conservation easement protects the majority of the 61.7-acre Ware Bottom Battlefield Park,” said Stuart Connock, assistant director of parks and recreation.

The chunk of land on Old Stage Road (VA Route 735) and Old Bermuda Hundred Road (VA Route 618) was purchased by the county with federal funding from the National Park Service’s Land and Water Conservation Fund – American Battlefield Protection Program (ABPP), seller donation and assistance from the American Battlefield Trust. 

Chesterfield hopes the additional park land will help bring awareness to the Battle of Ware Bottom Church, attract tourism and provide additional public use green space in a rapidly growing area of the county. The federal funding requires the park to be forever protected by a conservation easement, and open to the public.

What now?

The county plans to expand the park with amenities such as information kiosks, unpaved trails, a picnic or educational shelter, parking, and paved shared-use paths for pedestrians and cyclists.

“In the near future this newly conserved parkland will include just over one mile of unpaved trail featuring views of the Civil War earthworks,” Connock said. “This Park is important as a destination historical site, as a part of the Bermuda Campaign of 1864, and an open space asset within the Bermuda Magisterial District.”

For more information on the history of Ware Bottom Church, and the Civil War battle that took place there, click here.