Pea Ridge National Military Park

Scott Harvey / KSMU

This once popular road, as described by Troy Banzhaf, was equivalent to modern-day highways as it connected several states and was highly traveled. A portion of this road is also infamous in the role it played in a dark time in history. Banzhaf is the chief of interpretation at Pea Ridge National Military Park in Garfield, Arkansas. This site is best known for its Civil War history and the battle that occurred there in 1862.

Scott Harvey / KSMU

“You’re looking at about two-thirds of the battlefield from up on top of this vantage point up here,” says Troy Banzhaf.  

Atop the East Overlook at Pea Ridge National Military Park in northwestern Arkansas, you get a sense of the scope of this battlefield, where roughly 2,000 Union and Confederate soldiers lost their lives in March 1862. I’m standing alongside Troy Banzhaf, chief of interpretation at the park, as he describes the capabilities of the cannons scattered across the grass below.