New app will help visitors to Perryville Battlefield State Historic site

Herald-Leader Staff ReportMarch 31, 2014 

A new app created by Ball State University students will enhance the experience of visitors to Perryville Battlefield State Historic Site in Boyle County.

Perryville was the largest and bloodiest Civil War battle fought in Kentucky. It left about 7,600 soldiers dead, wounded or missing in October 1862.

The app provides firsthand accounts of the action, including troop movements and a look at life through a soldier's eyes. The battle unfolds with digital narratives and historical photographs as visitors travel the site.

"This app will give a better understanding of what happened here during the battle," said Kurt Holman, manager of the historic site. "It will tell the story of not just the generals but will enhance the understanding of the experiences of the common soldiers."

The app also reveals how local residents suffered. During the fighting, homes were used as hospitals and generals' headquarters. Some residents survived by digging holes into the middle of their houses.

Barring any major technical issues, the app is slated to be released April 19, which is also the day that Ball State students will exhibit the app at the park. The app should be available through the Android Marketplace (Google Play), said Joseph Sweet in an email. He is an undergrad history major at the Muncie, Ind., university who is working on the app.

Through the support of a Ball State Provost Immersive Learning Grant and the Friends of Perryville Battlefield, students were able to produce the app this semester.

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