The site of the first Civil War battle west of the Mississippi is growing by 42 acres thanks to an infusion of federal dollars and work by the battlefield's foundation.
The acreage, which is being purchased for Wilson's Creek National Battlefield for $450,000, includes land on which Union and Confederate troops fought. Running through the acreage is a creek where the men no doubt got water.
According to National Park Service historians, "the Battle of Wilson's Creek (called Oak Hills by the Southerners) was fought ten miles southwest of Springfield, Missouri on August 10, 1861. Named for the stream that crosses the area where the battle took place, it was a bitter struggle between Union and Southern forces for control of Missouri in the first year of the Civil War."
The land being added to the battlefield was acquired by the Wilson's Creek National Battlefield Foundation, which in turn sold it to the federal government. With the land transaction complete, the foundation now is turning its sights to acquiring 500 more acres in the area for addition to the national battlefield.