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Skirmish Over Walmart's Plans to Build Near Battlefield

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In Virginia,lawmakers in Orange County will hear from the public tonight about whether a Wal-Mart Supercenter will be a neighbor of one of the nation's most important Civil War sites.

The Orange County Board of Supervisors, which could vote after the hearing, is believed to be leaning toward approving the special use permit the world's biggest retailer needs to build on a 55-acre parcel in Locust Grove. I

n a state with more key Civil War battlefields than any other, Wal-Mart's plan to build a 138,000-square-foot store within a half-mile of the Wilderness has mobilized historians, preservationists and politicians.

They fear the Wal-Mart store will draw traffic and more commerce to an area within the historic bounds of the Wilderness, where Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee first met in battle 145 years ago and where 145,000 Union and Confederate soldiers fought and died.

Meymo Lyons reports...

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