Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park invites the public to participate in a torch light tour of the Chattanooga National Cemetery on Monday, May 27, at 8:45 p.m. Park Historian Jim Ogden will lead this 90 minute, one mile walking tour in partnership with the Department of Veterans Affairs’ Chattanooga National Cemetery and will review the coming campaign of 1863 and its events through the stories of those now interred in this place of honor.
In 1863, the nation entered its third year of bloody, costly, and transformative conflict. Chattanooga, nestled in the shadow of Lookout Mountain, had become the “gateway” through which to strike the Confederacy’s industrial heartland. As a result, it became clear to soldiers and civilians alike that the city would most likely become the scene of a major struggle. By year’s end, those expectations became truth at the battles of Chickamauga, Lookout Mountain, and Missionary Ridge. The lives lost in these battles revealed a dire need to establish a final resting place for these honored dead.
Participants should enter the cemetery off Holtzclaw Avenue and continue around the cemetery loop toward the old entrance arch in the southwest corner. Comfortable, supportive footwear, weather- appropriate clothing, water, and a flashlight are recommended for this program.
For more information about programs at Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, contact the Chickamauga Battlefield Visitor Center at 706.866-9241, the Lookout Mountain Battlefield Visitor Center at 821-7786, or visit the National Military Park’s website at www.nps.gov/chch.