In early 2000, I teamed up with John Trowbridge, then manager of the Kentucky Military History Museum in Frankfort, and together we began a campaign to convince the Veterans Administration that the Bloedner Monument existed as a National Treasure. During that period, we were able to confirm that Bloedner’s memorial was the oldest surviving Civil War monument in the Nation. Ultimately, we were successful in having a weather shield installed, initial preservation treatment began and an interpretive panel was placed on site. Part of our plan from the beginning of the effort included a recommendation that the monument be moved to a facility indoors to avoid additional weathering, that a duplicate be made to replace the original, and after preservation, Bloedner’s monument should be returned to the point of origin, Munfordville, Kentucky. Naturally that depended on Munfordville/Hart County having a suitable Civil War Interpretive Center to house such an item for the public. Munfordville has a growing endeavor to preserve their Civil War heritage, and personally, I can think of nothing more appropriate than returning the monument to where Bloedner and his comrades believed it would remain forever. In fact, Fort Willich, the small cemetery that remained within, and many of the other features shown on an 1864 map are remarkably unaffected by time.
Finally, on December 17, 2008, the 147th anniversary of the battle of Rowlett’s Station, the monument was removed from Cave Hill and sent to the University of Louisville for conservation. The Frazier International Arms Museum on Main Street in Louisville was chosen as the host agency to house this important memorial, and it now rests in the museum lobby for all to see. I am honored to use this site to chronicle the preservation of the Nation’s oldest surviving Civil War monument.