Study says sprawl threatens Civil War battlefields

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WASHINGTON -- Plans for a casino just outside Gettysburg were shot down last year, but the site of the Civil War's bloodiest battle is threatened by spreading home construction, a preservation group says.

While Gettysburg's new nemesis is housing, a site in Alabama's Mobile Bay is suffering from neglect and a lack of state funding, and vast tracts of land stretching from Virginia to Pennsylvania are at risk from a planned major power line, the Civil War Preservation Trust said in its annual inventory of endangered battlefields.

"Tens of thousands of valiant young Americans still lie entombed in those fields," former U.S. Rep. Charlie Wilson, D-Texas, who backed federal spending on Civil War land preservation, told reporters Tuesday. "It is truly hallowed ground."

In addition to sites in Pennsylvania, Alabama and Virginia, the report names Civil War locations in jeopardy in Georgia, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Tennessee and West Virginia.

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