The Battle of Prairie Grove was the last time two armies of almost equal strength faced each other for supremacy in northwest Arkansas. When the Confederate Army withdrew from the bloody battlefield at Prairie Grove on the night of Dec. 7, 1862 it was clear Missouri and northwest Arkansas would remain in Federal hands.
This year on Dec. 1 and 2, Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park commemorated the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Prairie Grove. The park is recognized nationally as one of America’s most intact Civil War battlefields. It hosts a battle reenactment every even-numbered year.
The battle reenactment was on some of the same ground the armies fought over during the skirmish, which includes the Borden House and valley below. The hillside is used as a natural amphitheater for viewing it. Seeing the battle unfold before your eyes on the ground the men fought and died for is one of the best ways to obtain a true sense of the Civil War and the Battle of Prairie Grove.
Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park closes one hour after sundown and the park museum is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Today, the park is a beautiful and serene setting, a stark contrast to the events that took place there. It is located on U.S. 62 in Prairie Grove. For more information, visit Arkansasstateparks.com or call (479) 846-2990.