Perryville Cleanup Day
August 20th 2016
Saturday morning on August 20--just after 9 am--we met with the park officials at Perryville Battlefield. They gave us some tools, and we headed for the hill next to Starkweather Hill.
The job before us was to remove a modern wire fence that had put up after the Battle of Perryville. This work in particular was important as we would be fighting the Saturday battle during the October reenactment across this land. This was ground recently acquired by the park where few had ever been since the battle, and not far beyond this fence is where many of the original 1st Tennessee were buried after the battle.
At the bottom of the hill, Steven Winston had already started Friday afternoon, removing a good portion of the fence. We started with bold cutters, pulling off fencing through weeds and overgrowth, folding the pieces up into piles to be carried away later. Progress was slow and the ground was wet. Steven Winston worked with Kurt (the curator of the park) in pulling the fence posts and placing them in piles to be pulled away.
At one point, Rick Compton needed to get something out of his truck at the top of the hill, and drove it back down to where we worked. He got it in his head that there had to be an easier way to remove the fence.
He was proud of his four wheel drive Ford F-150 with with brush guards, and anxious to learn what all the newfangled buttons were for. Rick was giddy with delight at being able to use his truck in this manner, and I was more than happy to assist with this play time. We hooked a strap to the front of his truck, then around some of the wire fence and he threw the truck into reverse, pulling the fence off taking about a hundred yards of of fence in short order.
Over the course of the day, we broke the 4000 pound strap a couple of times trying to pull the fence with Ricks truck out of a tree.
At 1 p.m. we had almost finished the fence with about a hundred yards to go, but were called in due to an incoming storm.
We met back at the Museum and then to the local Marathon station where there was food to eat for lunch, returning to the fence after the rains had cleared.
We finished the work after about an hour, returning to Danville to our hotel and eating at a local pizza place.