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Franklin preservation nonprofits purchase former piece of Carnton

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Battle of Franklin land

The Battle of Franklin Trust, Save the Franklin Battlefield, Friends of Franklin Parks and the American Battlefield Trust spent $107,500 for the 2.3 acre parcel located along Lewisburg Pike adjacent to Thompson’s Alley and the Harpeth River.

Several preservation organizations partnered last week to purchase a piece of land formerly part of Carnton and the Battle of Franklin. 

The Battle of Franklin Trust, Save the Franklin Battlefield, Friends of Franklin Parks and the American Battlefield Trust spent $107,500 for the 2.3 acre parcel located along Lewisburg Pike adjacent to Thompson’s Alley and the Harpeth River.

The land is historically significant as an area that saw heavy casualties during the 1864 Civil War Battle of Franklin, says Battle of Franklin Trust CEO and historian Eric A. Jacobson. 

Brig. Gen. Thomas Scott’s Brigade moved across the area, with Scott himself among the wounded brought back to Carnton for treatment after the battle.

Located at 417 Lewisburg Pike, the land is also directly across from the Collins Farm Historic Park, former home to Carnton manager William Collins and his family. Following the battle, the property was a field hospital and temporary gravesite for the dead.

Jacobson called the Thompson Alley property the “most important piece of core battlefield left in Franklin,” due to the purchasing price at auction. Located in the floodplain, Jacobson said a park with historic signage is an appropriate use for the land.

Friends of Franklin Parks Executive Director Torrey Barnhill said the property uses would be multipurpose and to “connect dots.”

A future trail system could eventually connect Harlinsdale Farm with Pinkerton Park and Eastern Flank Battlefield Park. 

“The city is working on the schematic design for sidewalks, and it just fits within that scheme,” Barnhill said. 

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