Historians sign petition to stop Casino from opening near Gettysburg

Historians in the News

More than 100 Civil War historians have signed a letter to Pennsylvania's gambling regulators asking them to deny a license to a slot-machine casino proposed near the historic battlefield.

Calling it the second battle of Gettysburg, the letter comes as the state Gaming Control Board is expected to vote on license applicants Wednesday.

The slots parlor would be a mile-and-a-half from the border of the 6,000-acre Gettysburg National Military Park in southcentral Pennsylvania. A casino so close would sully the family-friendly and thoughtful atmosphere of the battlefields where thousands died in 1863, the historians said.

"It is our solemn duty to protect this resource, not squander it through misguided choices," said the letter, which was organized by preservation groups including the Washington-based Civil War Preservation Trust.

Among the 111 signers were James M. McPherson, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of "The Battle Cry of Freedom."

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