Virginia State Parks has named Chris Calkins as park manager of Sailor’s Creek Battlefield State Park located in Amelia County. Mr. Calkins has been with the National Park Service for 34 years and has served at Appomattox Court House National Historical Park, Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park, and as historian and chief of interpretations at Petersburg National Battlefield since 1981.
Mr. Calkins plans to have the park’s infrastructure up and running by 2015 for the 150th Sesquicentennial of the American Civil War. This will include an up-and-running visitor center, the restored Hillsman farm house, intepretive programs, walking trails and a land protection plan.
The renovations to the Hillsman farm house as a furnished house museum interpreting it as a home and field hospitalare complete. The farm house will be open to the public the weekend of April 4th and 5th (more on that event to come). Construction of the park’s first visitor center is underway.
Mr. Calkins is the author of the highly acclaimed “Lee’s Retreat” driving tour along with twelve publications and numerous articles. He served on the board of directors for eight years with the Association for the Preservation of Civil War Sites, Inc. and helped broker the preservation of seven sites around Petersburg and Appomattox. Mr. Calkins is a native of Detroit and graduated from Longwood College (now University) in Farmville, Virginia.
In 1984 the Hillsman farm house and Sailor’s Creek Battlefield were placed not only on the National Register of Historic Places but also on that with the status of National Historic Landmark.