The Washington Post

New study says battlefield preservation creates jobs

The Civil War Trust has just released a study that indicates those communities which preserve battlefields and sponsor events around them get a job-boosting, economic return on the investment.

“On average, every 702 tourists to a Civil War battlefield support one full-time or full-time equivalent local job,” according to the “Blue, Gray and Green” report written by the Harbinger Consulting Group of Ham Lake, Minn. “These jobs are independent of any jobs within a local battlefield park,” the report stated.

Of the 13 battlefield communities surveyed, according to the report, “visitors generated a total of $15.3 million in sales taxes and another $7.8 million in local government revenues. This amounts to approximately $5.84 per visitor at the state level and another $2.94 per visitor for the local service.”

Those battlefields surveyed included Antietam, Bentonville, Brice’s Cross Roads, Corinth, Franklin, Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania, Gettysburg, Mill Springs, New Market, Perryville, Port Hudson, Shiloh and Wilson’s Creek.

The detailed report even included the average age of the non-local battlefield tourists as well as the percentage of college graduates among them.

The average age of visitors for the 13 sites surveyed ranged from 45.8 at Port Hudson, La., to 58.3 at Wilson’s Creek, Mo. The highest percentage of tourists with college degrees visited Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania, Va. (73 percent), and the lowest percentage (36 percent) traveled to Mill Springs, Ky.


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