In late summer of 1863, the union army moved on the City of Chattanooga, from the north. They wanted to capture it for it’s rail line and the Tennessee river, to supply there army. As the union army started to surround the city, the confederates, retreated to the south, across the Tennessee river and into Georgia a few miles. There they set up strong defensive lines. The union in the mean time also bolstered it’s supply of men and arms. In early September 1863, the union army pushed across the Tennessee river, into Georgia. What the union did not know was that during the last few weeks, reinforcements were being brought in. Now each army had about 60,000 men each. On September 19 and 20 of 1863 the armies met at a little meandering creek, known as the Chickamauga, and Indian word, meaning “river of death”. For two days they went at each other back and forth, slugging it out. After two days of fighting the union for some reason decided to retreat back to Chattanooga. The Confederates in hot pursuit. The union crossed the Tennessee river, north back into Chattanooga, and confederates set up defensive positions on the south side near Lookout mountain. The battle was over, most say it was a draw, but the union did fall back.


After the battle of Chickamauga, the union was resupplied and fresh troops brought in. The confederates had to do with what they had, and bolstered up there lines hoping to put a siege on Chattanooga. After two months passed, the union was ready to attack, which they did on November 23, 1863. This became known as the battle of Chattanooga, or “Battle above the clouds”

The union attached right at the center of lookout mountain, which was defended by  Confederate artillery, but it was not very effective because of the terrain. In the photo and map below the union attached from right to left along the slopes of lookout mountain, then gained the high ground, placed cannon on top, and swept the confederates off the ridges into the low country ,where the union army was waiting and pushed ahead. This put the confederates in a head long retreat. The confederates retreated past the Chickamauga creek and kept going, falling back over the next few weeks into the deep south. The union did not follow.





Cannon on Lookout mountain, overlooking Chattanooga


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