Photos of the Week – Prairie Grove Battlefield

The Battle of Prairie Grove took place on December 7, 1862, and was the last major Civil War battle to be fought in northwest Arkansas.  It took place nine months after the Battle of Pea Ridge.  The battle was a tactical stalemate, but secured northwest Arkansas for the Union.

The battlefield at Prairie Grove is considered to be one of the best preserved Civil War battlefields.  I had the opportunity to visit it about ten years ago.


Like all of the photos I took in high school and college (my main photography phase) I kept these pictures stored away.  I came across them a couple months ago and pulled them out, intending to post them on my blog.  Of course I got distracted by something else.



The weather was partly cloudy and perfect for pictures on the day we visited.


These photos feel somewhat haunting to me.  I’m always fascinated by a moment when I can stand in the same spot where a significant historical event happened years ago.  The cows peacefully grazing and the silence of the tall grass swaying in the breeze felt strange as I thought about the bloodshed that took place in 1862.  2,700 men were killed, wounded, or missing as a result of this battle.


I’ve been interested in the American Civil War since I was in high school.  The very reason I find it so interesting to study is the same reason I have to take a break every time I do so:  because every aspect of it is so incredibly tragic.  It is difficult to understand all the intricacies of and the devastating sadness of the war and the events leading up to and following it.  The horrors of slavery, the deep impact of racism, and the fathers and sons in each army who didn’t come home…it was a terrible and bloody war.



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