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The Battle of Elizabethtown will be immortalized on Public Square this week.
The dedication of the Civil War monument is at 10 a.m. Saturday on the square in front of Town & Country, Hardin County History Museum President Susan McCrobie said.
Designed by Keith Monument Co., the memorial marker was purchased through donations from The Cecilian Bank and Elizabethtown Tourism & Convention Bureau, according to a news release.
The marker ceremony comes on the heels of the 150th anniversary of the December skirmish, which pitted 652 Union troops from the 91st Illinois Volunteer Infantry under the command of Lt. Col. Harry S. Smith against 3,900 raiding Confederate troops from the Army of Tennessee led by Brig. Gen. John Hunt Morgan.
McCrobie said the dedication will feature a presentation from James A. Ramage, a Northern Kentucky University professor who penned “Rebel Raider: The Life of General John Hunt Morgan.” Ramage will give a roughly 20-minute speech describing the significance of the battle and its outcome, McCrobie said.
There also will be special music played by the 100th U.S. Army Brass Quintet and posting of colors by a special color guard, McCrobie said. Floral arrangements will be laid by Civil War hereditary or lineage organizations, including Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War 1861-65 and the General Ben Hardin Helm Camp Sons of Confederate Veterans, she said.
McCrobie said the city is expecting several descendants of those who fought in the battle to travel long distances to attend the dedication and see the monument.
The downtown history and heritage committee also is finalizing an application for a designation as a national Civil War battlefield, which McCrobie said would bring prestige to the city. It also would serve as a strong companion to other historically-oriented sites in the area, including the Hardin County History Museum in Elizabethtown and the General George Patton Museum of Leadership at Fort Knox.
The committee is currently gathering the footprint of the battle by surveying what structures were damaged and where cannons hit, she said. She hopes the application will be ready by year’s end or the first part of 2013.
McCrobie said the designation also would lead to an increase in tourism and trigger an economic benefit for the city.
And she said the fact the battle was waged inside the city adds some significance.
“It was an urban battlefield,” she said. “It was not a grassy pasture.”
Marty Finley can be reached at (270) 505-1762 or email@example.com.