Battle Chickamauga: Summary

Chickamauga is near Chattanooga, Tennessee. Chattanooga was an important area to control because a rail to Nashville and Atlanta and a manufacturing center.

The South controlled the Chattanooga area and the North wanted it.

The Union tried to blow up a bridge Confederate troops were crossing but failed in their attempt.

Day 1 of 2 of Battle
  • The Battle of Chickamauga opened almost by accident, when Union troops encroached while looking for water.

  • Fighting was so close to Union headquarters that the Union top brass had to yell in their headquarters (a tiny cabin) to be heard over the neighboring fighting.
Planning for Day 2 of 2
  • Confederates - planned a dawn attack that didn’t materialize

  • Union - Confederate reinforcements arrived. The Union now outnumbered decided to go on the defensive.
Day 2 of 2 of Battle
  • Tactical error – Union commander Rosecrans was misinformed that he had a gap in his line. In attempting to correct the nonexistent gap he accidentally created an actual gap.

  • At Horseshoe Ridge Union fighters staved off Confederates in “one of the epic defensive stands of the entire war.”

  • Union commander Rosecrans was driven from the field. When Union backup Gen. George Thomas took control he began withdrawing troops. Thomas left himself, leaving no one else in control. Union troops were left behind without sufficient ammunition, and ordered to use their bayonets. They held their position until surrounded, when they were forced to surrender.

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