Federal lawmakers call for adding Lincoln Train Station to Gettysburg battlefield

Written by The Associated Press | Apr 18, 2013 12:17 PM
Abraham Lincoln Papers

(Gettysburg) -- Members of Pennsylvania's congressional delegation are pushing to add the historic Lincoln Train Station and a 45-acre parcel to Gettysburg National Military Park.

Both U.S. senators, Democrat Bob Casey and Republican Pat Toomey and Republican Congressman Scott Perry, whose district includes Gettysburg, say their efforts involve the station and land on the park's southern boundary.

“Gettysburg National Park is an important part of our nation’s history and of Adams County’s local economy,” Toomey says. “With the upcoming 150th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg, I am happy to announce my support for the Gettysburg National Military Park Expansion Act. By expanding Gettysburg National Park, this bill will help preserve our national history and encourage tourism and growth in the area.”

The train station, located in the borough's downtown, dates to 1858. That's five years before the Northern army beat back the Confederates in a major turning point of the war. It served as a hospital and key transit point. It was also where President Abraham Lincoln arrived before delivering his famed Gettysburg Address in November, 1863.

“The Battle of Gettysburg marks a turning point in American history,” Perry says. “By preserving the Lincoln Train Station, I hope to inspire my fellow citizens to learn and appreciate the significance of the Gettysburg Campaign, the Gettysburg Address, the Civil War and the bravery of the soldiers who, in President Lincoln's words, ‘gave the last full measure of devotion.’"

The 45-acre parcel was the scene of cavalry clashes and includes environmentally sensitive wetlands. Lawmakers said its current owner, the Gettysburg Foundation, plans to donate the property to the park once it's included within the park boundaries.

“I am calling on the Senate to pass this bipartisan, fiscally responsible legislation before the 150th Anniversary of the President Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address this November 19th,” Casey says. “In addition to serving as a site of national historical and cultural importance, Gettysburg is also important to the economy of the region. I am committed to working with partners in the Commonwealth to make sure it remains this way for generations to come.”



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