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View from Lookout Mountain127
View from the top of LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN, Tenn.
February 1864


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View from Lookout Mountain
View of Chattanooga (background) and the Tennessee River
(foreground) taken from Lookout Mountain - 2002.

1864 View from Lookout Mountain 127
View of Chattanooga (background) and the Tennessee River
(foreground) taken from Lookout Mountain - 1864.

(A part of the panoramic photograph at the top of this page.)


November 23-25, 1863
Estimated Casualties: 12,485 total (US 5,815; CS 6,670)

From the last days of September through October 1863, Gen. Braxton Bragg's army laid siege to the Union army under Maj. Gen. William Rosecrans at Chattanooga, cutting off its supplies. On October 17, Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant received command of the Western armies; he moved to reinforce Chattanooga and replaced Rosecrans with Maj. Gen. George Thomas. A new supply line was soon established. Maj. Gen. William T. Sherman arrived with his four divisions in mid-November, and the Federals began offensive operations.

Battle of Chattanooga--Gen. Thomas's charge near Orchard Knob,
Nov. 24' 1863[--parts A.O.T. Potomac, Tenne. & Cumbd. engaged]

Kurz & Allison, Art Publishers, [c1888]. Lithograph, hand colored.

On November 24, 1863, Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, the Union commander, ordered Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker's force to storm Lookout Mountain. Hooker's men swept up the western slope of the mountain and then charged around the base of the cliffs. The battle reached its high point near the Craven House just below the cliffs. The outnumbered Confederates were repeatedly pushed back.

 Battle of Lookout Mountain--November 24' 1863
Battle of Lookout Mountain--November 24' 1863.
4' & 14' Corps, Army of the Cumberland & Geary's Div.
o. 12' Corps, & 11' & 15' Corps A.O.T. Tenn. engaged.
Kurz & Allison, Art Publishers, [1889]. Lithograph, hand colored.

Because fog enveloped the mountain most of the day, soldiers nicknamed the battle of Lookout Mountain the "Battle above the clouds".

On November 25, Union soldiers assaulted and carried the seemingly impregnable Confederate position on Missionary Ridge. One of the Confederacy's two major armies was routed. The Federals held Chattanooga, the “Gateway to the Lower South,” which became the supply and logistics base for Sherman's 1864 Atlanta Campaign1.

(Text Source: U.S. Gov't, National Park Service)

  1. In my opinion, Sherman's treatment of civilians during the upcoming Atlanta Campaign was forecast by the following telegram from Chattanooga to President Lincoln -Ed.:

    Sherman's Letter   176
    William T. Sherman to Abraham Lincoln, May 5, 1864
    (First Page of a Telegram concerning General Orders No. 8).

    From William T. Sherman to Abraham Lincoln1, May 5, 1864

    [Note 1 Sherman's General Orders No. 8, issued on April 19, 1864, stipulated that provisions would no longer be distributed to civilians at military posts located south of Nashville. The orders also prohibited the sale of provisions to civilians who were not employed by the government. Loyal Unionists in East Tennessee petitioned Lincoln that this order was too harsh and would cause many to starve. After receiving this petition Lincoln telegraphed Sherman on May 5 and asked the general if something could be done to help alleviate the suffering of the citizens in East Tennessee. See East Tennessee Citizens to Lincoln, April 23, 1864 and Collected Works, VII, 330. ]

    The following Telegram received at Washington, 1115 A M. May 5 1864.

    From Chattanooga

    Dated, May 5 1864.

    We have worked hard with the best talent of the Country & it is demonstrated that the railroad cannot supply the army & the people too, one or the other must quit & the Army don't intend to unless Joe Johnston makes us. The issues to citizens have been enormous & the same weight of corn or oats would have saved thousands of the mules whose carcasses now corduroy the roads and which we need so much. We have paid back to East Tenn. ten for one of provisions taken in war. I will not change my order and I beg of you to be satisfied that the clamor is partly a humbug & for effect, & to test it I advise you to tell the bearers of the appeal to hurry to Kentucky & make up a caravan of cattle & wagons & to come over by Cumberland Gap and Somerset to relieve their suffering friends We on foot as they used to do before a railroad was built Tell them they have no time to lose, We can relieve all actual suffering by each company or regiment giving of their Savings, every man who is willing to fight and work gets all ration, & all who won't fight or work should go away and we offer them free transportation.

    W. T. Sherman

    Maj. Gen.

    William T. Sherman to Abraham Lincoln, May 5, 1864 (Telegram concerning General Orders No. 8). Transcribed and annotated by the Lincoln Studies Center, Knox College, Galesburg, Illinois. Available at Abraham Lincoln Papers at the Library of Congress, Manuscript Division (Washington, D.C.: American Memory Project, [2000-02]), http:/, accessed [March 30, 2003].



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