When Mickey Comes Marching Home

What the Grand Army of the Potomac failed to do, the Disney mouse may achieve 130 years later.

The hills and fields around Manassas, Virginia, have felt the boot of foreign forces before. But the latest intruder, the Walt Disney Co., may leave a mark more lasting than any Yankee heel: a $650 million American-history-and- entertainment park, called Disney's America, situated on 3,000 acres in the history-rich country 35 miles west of Washington.

Despite a formidable array of opponents, the project moved ahead last Saturday when the expiring session of the Virginia general assembly approved a $163 million package of incentives for roads, highway signs, worker training and tourism promotion designed to entice embattled Disney to stay in the...

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