DHR Administers Two Easements Over Civil War Battlefield Land in Henrico County

Published April 17, 2024
easements in henrico county, virginia

The Robertson-Welch Tract (left), and the Jackson Tract in 2024.

Virginia Department of Historic Resources
For Immediate Release
April 16, 2024

Ivy Tan
Department of Historic Resources
Marketing & Communications Manager

—The easements protect properties linked to four Civil War battles—

RICHMOND – In March, the Department of Historic Resources (DHR) executed and recorded perpetual preservation and open-space easements over two historic properties in Henrico County encompassing landscape that served as the site of four different battles of the American Civil War. The easements will protect approximately 50.5 acres combined from subdivision and future development. The easements will also ensure appropriate treatment and stewardship for the historical and archaeological resources associated with these properties.

The properties, both located off Yahley Mill Road in eastern Henrico, are known as the Jackson Tract and the Robertson-Welch Tract. They are associated with the Civil War Battles of Glendale (1862), Deep Bottom I (1864), Deep Bottom II (1864), and Fair Oaks & Darbytown Road (1864). Both properties fall within the historic core area of the Deep Bottom II battlefield as determined in The Report on the Nation's Civil War Battlefields, published by the Civil War Sites Advisory Commission in 1993.

The American Battlefield Trust (ABT) acquired the Jackson Tract and the Robertson-Welch Tract in 2022 with grants awarded through the American Battlefield Protection Program, Virginia Land Conservation Fund, and Virginia Battlefield Preservation Fund. ABT conveyed the easements over both properties to the Virginia Board of Historic Resources (VBHR) as part of the requirements to receive those grant funds. ABT intends to interpret the properties for their historic battlefield significance through publicly accessible trails, signs, and other similar amenities.

The Battles of Deep Bottom II and Fair Oaks & Darbytown Road are associated with African American military heritage and the contributions made by the United States Colored Troops (U.S.C.T.) during the Civil War. In 1862, the U.S. government authorized and encouraged Black men to enlist in military service. Records indicate that multiple U.S.C.T. regiments fought during the Battles of Deep Bottom II and Fair Oaks & Darbytown Road. The U.S.C.T.’s presence in these battles represents their importance to the ultimate victory of the Union Army at the end of the Civil War.

Preservation of these properties through the easements add to the roughly 1,200 acres of historic lands already protected by the VBHR in Henrico County. The topography of the Robertson-Welch Tract includes a forested terrain with streams, pond frontage, and associated wetland habitat while the Jackson Tract fronts a section of the Old Darbytown Road/Central Road. Both tracts were previously adapted for residential and/or agricultural uses.

As of 2024, DHR has placed under easement more than 45,500 acres of land. DHR easements are held by the VBHR, and DHR staff monitor the eased lands. The VBHR currently holds easements on approximately 16,300 acres of battlefields in Virginia. For more information about the newly recorded easements over the Jackson Tract and the Robertson-Welch Tract, email Megan.Melinat@dhr.virginia.gov.

About the American Battlefield Trust
The American Battlefield Trust is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to preserve the nation’s hallowed battlegrounds and educate the public about what happened at these sites and why it matters. The Trust strives to inspire appreciation of America, its history, and its promise of liberty through an understanding of the wars fought on its soil, and of the sacrifices of earlier generations of Americans. Visit battlefields.org to learn more.



DHR Easement Projects Receive 2024 Governor’s Environmental Excellence Awards

Blick Plantation in Brunswick County.

Rediscovering the Blick Plantation Home in Southside Virginia

Pure Oil, Cape Charles

DHR Spotlight: Preservation Incentives Division

Union Street Cemeteries, City of Hampton

Grave Matters: The African American Cemetery & Graves Fund

Group photo of AMDA participants

Professional Archaeologists Attend Metal Detecting Workshop

A drawing by Conan Paige of his family home, the Paige-Pollard House.

Heirloom Home: The Paige-Pollard House in King William County


Related Press Releases

flights to freedom marker dedication

State Historical Marker Dedicated for Enslaved People’s Escape from Slavery in Mathews County

State Historical Marker to Be Dedicated for ca.-1870 All-Girls School in Mecklenburg County

easements in henrico county, virginia

DHR Administers Two Easements Over Civil War Battlefield Land in Henrico County