Sailors pitch in at Va. Civil War battlefield

POSTED: 5:04 AM Jun 13 2013   UPDATED: 5:41 PM Jun 13 2013

Sailors aboard the USS Fort McHenry have made it a weekly habit of traveling from their homeport in Virginia Beach to Richmond National Battlefield Park, and not as tourists.

Led by their chaplain, Lt. Kevin Johnson, a rotating group has been volunteering their time to clean up the landscape at Rural Plains, one of the park's newest sites. Thursday will be their third visit clearing brush and cleaning up debris.

Rural Plains is at the heart of the 1864 Totopotomoy Creek battlefield. It includes the Shelton House, which dates to the early 1700s.

Thursday, the park will also unveil a sign commemorating the sailors' service to the site.