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CHICAMAUGUA NATIONAL MILITARY PARK ACT, 1890
AN ACT TO ESTABLISH A NATIONAL MILITARY
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That for the purpose of preserving and suitably marking for historical and professional military study the fields of some of the most remarkable maneuvers and most brilliant fighting in the war of the rebellion, and upon the ceding of jurisdiction to the United States by the States of Tennessee and Georgia, respectively, and the report of the Attorney General of the United States that the title to the lands thus ceded is perfect, the following described highways in those States are hereby declared to be approaches to and parts of the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park as established by the second section of this act, to wit: First. The Missionary Ridge Crest road from Sherman Heights at the north end of Missionary Ridge, in Tennessee, where the said road enters upon the ground occupied by the Army of the Tennessee under Major-General William T. Sherman, in the military operations of November twenty-fourth and twenty-fifth, eighteen hundred and sixty-three; thence along said road through the positions occupied by the army of General Braxton Bragg on November twenty-fifth, eighteen hundred and sixty-three, and which were assaulted by the Army of the Cumberland under Major-General George H. Thomas on that date, to where the said road crosses the southern boundary of the State of Tennessee, near Rossville Gap, Georgia, upon the ground occupied by the troops of Major-General Joseph Hooker, from the Army of the Potomac, and thence in the State of Georgia to the junction of said road with the Chattanooga and Lafayette or State road at Rossville Gap; second, the Lafayette or State road from Rossville, Georgia, to Lee and Gordon's Mills, Georgia; third, the road from Lee and Gordon's Mills, Georgia, to Crawfish Springs, Georgia; fourth, the road from Crawfish Springs, Georgia, to the crossing of the Chickamauga at Glass' Mills, Georgia; fifth, the Dry Valley road from Rossville, Georgia, to the southern limits of Mc-Farland's Gap in Missionary Ridge; sixth, the Dry Valley and Crawfish Springs road from McFarland's Gap to the intersection of the road from Crawfish Springs to Lee and Gordon's Mills; seventh, the road from Ringold, Georgia, to Reed's Bridge on the Chickamauga River; eighth, the roads from the crossing of Lookout Creek across the northern slope of Lookout Mountain and thence to the old Summertown Road and to the valley on the east slope of said mountain, and thence by the route of General Joseph Hooker's troops to Rossville, Georgia, and each and all of these herein described roads shall, after the passage of this act, remain open as free public highways, and all rights of way now existing through the grounds of the said park and its approaches shall be continued.
SEC. 2. That upon the ceding of jurisdiction by the legislature of he State of Georgia, and the report of the Attorney-General of the United States that a perfect title has been secured under the provisions of the act approved August first, eighteen hundred and eighty-eight, entitled "An act to authorize condemnation of land for sites of public buildings, and for other purposes," the lands and roads embraced in the area bounded as herein described, together with the roads described in section one of this act, are hereby declared to be a national park, to be known as the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Park; that is to say, the area inclosed by a line beginning on the Lafayette or State road, in Georgia, at a point where the bottom of the ravine next north of the house known on the field of Chickamauga as the Cloud House, and being about six hundred yards north of said house, due east to the Chickamauga River and due west to he intersection of the Dry Valley road at McFarland's Gap; thence long the west side of the Dry Valley and Crawfish Springs roads to the south side of the road from Crawfish Springs to Lee and Gordon's Mills; thence along the south side of the last named road to Lee and Gordon's Mills; thence along the channel of the Chickamauga River to the line forming the northern boundary of the park, as ereinbefore described, containing seven thousand six hundred acres, more or less.
SEC. 3. That the said Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Park, and the approaches thereto, shall be under the control of the Secretary of War, and it shall be his duty, immediately after the passage of this act to notify the Attorney General of the purpose of the United States to acquire title to the roads and lands described in the previous sections of this act under the provisions of the act of August first, eighteen hundred and eighty-eight; and the said Secretary, upon receiving notice from the Attorney-General of the United States that perfect titles have been secured to the said lands and roads, shall at once proceed to establish and substantially mark the boundaries of the said park.
SEC. 4. That the Secretary of War is hereby authorized to enter into agreements, upon such nominal terms as he may prescribe, with such present owners of the land as may desire to remain upon it, to occupy and cultivate their present holdings, upon condition that they ill preserve the present buildings and roads, and the present outlines of field and forest, and that they will only cut trees or under-brush under such regulations as the Secretary may prescribe, and that they will assist in caring for and protecting all tablets, monuments, or such other artificial works as may from time to time be erected by proper authority.
SEC. 5. That the affairs of the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Park shall, subject to the supervision and direction of the Secretary of War, be in charge of three commissioners, each of whom shall have actively participated in the battle of Chickamauga or one of the battles about Chattanooga, two to be appointed from civil life by the Secretary of War, and a third, who shall be detailed by the Secretary of War from among those officers of the Army best acquainted with the details of the battles of Chickamauga and Chattanooga, who shall act as Secretary of the Commission. The said commissioners and Secretary shall have an office in the War Department building, and while on actual duty shall be paid such compensation, out of the appropriation provided in this act, as the Secretary of War shall deem reasonable and just.
SEC. 6. That it shall be the duty of the commissioners named in the preceding section, under the direction of the Secretary of War, to superintend the opening of such roads as may be necessary to the purposes of the park, and the repair of the roads of the same, and to ascertain and definitely mark the lines of battle of all troops engaged in the battles of Chickamauga and Chattanooga, so far as the same shall fall within the lines of the park as defined in the previous sections of this act, and, for the purpose of assisting them in their duties and in ascertaining these lines, the Secretary of War shall have authority to employ, at such compensation as he may deem reasonable and just, to be paid out of the appropriation made by this act, some person recognized as well informed in regard to the details of the battles of Chickamauga and Chattanooga, and who shall have actively participated in one of those battles, and it shall be the duty of the Secretary of War from and after the passage of this act, through the commissioners, and their assistant in historical work, and under the act approved August first, eighteen hundred and eighty-eight, regulating the condemnation of land for public uses, to proceed with the preliminary work of establishing the park and its approaches as the same are defined in this act, and the expenses thus incurred shall be paid out of the appropriation provided by this act.
SEC. 7. That it shall be the duty of the commissioners, acting under the direction of the Secretary of War, to ascertain and substantially mark the locations of the regular troops, both infantry and artillery, within the boundaries of the park, and to erect monuments upon those positions as Congress may provide the necessary appropriations and the Secretary of War in the same way may ascertain and mark all lines of battle within the boundaries of the park and erect plain and substantial historical tablets at such points in the vicinity of the Park and its approaches as he may deem fitting and necessary to clearly designate positions and movements, which, although without the limits of the Park, were directly connected with the battles of Chickamauga and Chattanooga.
SEC. 8. That it shall be lawful for the authorities of any State having troops engaged either at Chattanooga or Chickamauga, and for the officers and directors of the Chickamauga Memorial Association, a corporation chartered under the laws of Georgia, to enter upon the lands and approaches of the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Park for the purpose of ascertaining and marking the lines of battle of troops engaged therein: Provided, That before any such lines are permanently designated the position of the lines and the proposed methods of marking them by monuments, tablets, or otherwise shall be submitted to the Secretary of War, and shall first receive the written approval of the Secretary, which approval shall be based upon formal written reports, which must be made to him in each case by the commissioners of the park.
SEC. 9. That the Secretary of War, subject to the approval of the President of the United States, shall have the power to make, and shall make, all needed regulations for the care of the park and for the establishment and marking of the lines of battle and other historical features of the park.
SEC. 10. That if any person shall willfully destroy, mutilate, deface, injure, or remove any monument, column, statue, memorial structure, or work of art that shall be erected or placed upon the grounds of the park by lawful authority, or shall willfully destroy or remove any fence, railing, inclosure, or other work for the protection or ornament of said park, or any portion thereof, or shall willfully destroy, cut, hack, bark, break down, or otherwise injure any tree, bush, or shrubbery that may be growing upon said park, or shall cut down or fell or remove any timber, battle relic, tree or trees growing or being upon such park, except by permission of the Secretary of War, or shall willfully remove or destroy any breast-works, earth-works, walls, or other defenses or shelter, on any part thereof, constructed by the armies formerly engaged in the battles on the lands or approaches to the park, any person so offending and found guilty thereof, before any justice of the peace of the county in which the offense may be committed, shall for each and every such offense forfeit and pay a fine, in the discretion of the justice, according to the aggravation of the offense, of not less than five nor more than fifty dollars, one-half to the use of the park and the other half to the informer, to be enforced and recovered, before such justice, in like manner as debts of like nature are now by law recoverable in the several counties where the offense may be committed.
SEC. 11. That to enable the Secretary of War to begin to carry out the purpose of this act, including the condemnation and purchase of the necessary land, marking the boundaries of the park, opening or repairing necessary roads, maps and surveys, and the pay and expenses of the commissioners and their assistant, the sum of one hundred and twenty-five thousand dollars, or such portion thereof as may be necessary, is hereby appropriated, out of any moneys in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, and disbursements under this act shall require the approval of the Secretary of War, and he shall make annual report of the same to Congress. (16 U.S.C. §424 as amended.)