"Churches Under Siege: Chattanooga 1863" Program Led By Jim Ogden

Thursday, October 24, 2013 - by Ruth Robinson
Jim Ogden, an acclaimed Civil War historian and ranger at Chickamauga-Chattanooga National Military Park, captured and held the attention of a large crowd at St. Paul's Episcopal Church Wednesday evening, where he was the featured speaker for "Churches Under Siege: Chattanooga 1863." Also sharing the program were six people representing the six churches in Chattanooga in 1863, Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, Catholic, Episcopal and Cumberland Presbyterian, who told of the experiences of their church in wartime.
The program, one of several in observance of the 150 year celebration of the Civil War, was organized by Jim Frierson of St. Paul's.
 
Mr. Ogden began his talk with background about Chattanooga in 1863. Early in that year, Chattanooga was occupied by Confederates. Much of the community effort was involved in providing hospital care for an expected influx of  wounded. Hospitals were created, including a 500-bed hospital on the side of Cameron Hill.
 
The eyes of the nation were focused on Chattanooga, Mr. Ogden said, because both North and South recognized it was important as the gateway of supplies to both armies. Chattanooga and its churches became a front line when Union cannon fire bombarded the town while residents were gathered at the Presbyterian Church for prayer. Most of the residents left with few members  left for the churches.
 
A drought, which had left the unpaved street in dust, was broken in September and the street became mud. On Sept. 9, the Union occupied Chattanooga and began immediately to prepare for an anticipated 4,000 wounded. The town was flooded with military uniforms and equipment and the churches were taken over by the military for hospitals or war equipment storage. Most sustained extensive damage.
 
On Sept. 20, a flood of wounded filled the town with wounded from the battle at Chickamauga. In addition to churches and buildings and the hospital on Cameron Hill, there was also a tent hospital. As many as possible were quickly moved out of  Chattanooga to make way for the incoming injured.
 
In October, with the arrival of U.S. Grant in Chattanooga, he redeemed the situation of the Union. He organized the effort which broke the stranglehold held by Confederates on the town and was able to turn the tide in Chattanooga.
 
As the war moved on and the hospitals were cleared with only 800 downtown, some of the churches were then used to store military guns. It was, Mr. Ogden said, "homage to the gods of war, rather than the God of the churches."

Jericho Brass Christmas Concert And Cookie Fellowship At Signal Mountain Baptist

The Jericho Brass, under the direction of Frank Hale, will perform a concert of Christmas music at the Signal Mountain Baptist Church, 939 Ridgeway Ave. at 6 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 7. During the evening the band will feature Dr. Robert Pendergast on Euphonium performing Philip Sparks' "Pantomime" and Cindy Solfest-Wallace from Camp House will type out Leroy Anderson's "The ... (click for more)

Red Bank UMC Hosts Holiday Market And Vendor Fair Dec. 6

Red Bank UMC Holiday Market and Vendor Fair will be  Saturday, Dec. 6, 1:30-8 p.m.  in the Christian Activity Center (gym), next to the tennis courts on Redding Road in Red Bank. Enjoy shopping for one of a kind handmade crafts, jewelry, clothing and baked goods, as well as specialty items from vendors with Direct Selling Companies. The Holiday Market is a fundraiser ... (click for more)

County Schools Have Plan To Put Security Cameras At Every School

The Hamilton County Schools have a plan to put security cameras in every school, Supt. Rick Smith told the County School Board Thursday night. He said the money would come from the $2,201,000 the schools received last year from the sale of the old Ooltewah Elementary School property. The proposal must get approval from the School Board at the December meeting, then from the ... (click for more)

Lookout Mountain, Ga., Raises Sewer Rates; Joins In Kudzu Fight

The Lookout Mountain, Ga., City Council on Thursday night approved an increase in sewer charges. The council approved ordinance 281 increasing sewer rates to $6 per 100 cubic feet of water from the previous rate of $4.77.  The new increase will be in effect in January 2015.    City Manager Brad Haven said the town will be replacing the flow meter for ... (click for more)

Don't Allow Us To Be Overrun By People Who Do Not Belong Here - And Response (4)

Thank you, Senator Corker, for your clear, concise evaluation of the president's attempt to bypass Congress and personally and independently establish national policy that violates our current immigration laws.   Our long-standing failure to enforce our laws to control illegal immigration across our southern border has made this country less safe and ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Quick! Arm Our Guards

When I learned last Wednesday that Chattanooga’s leading hospital, in a ridiculous attempt to be more “family friendly,” planned to disarm its security guards. I was aghast but decided to wait for the proper “incident” to illustrate how stupid members of our “free thought society” can sometimes be. It took exactly one week. A bit after midnight on Thursday morning a gunman appeared ... (click for more)