Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park invites the public to participate in three days of historic, “real-time” walks on Sept. 18, 19, and 20, 2013, in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Chickamauga. Union and Confederate soldiers found themselves locked in a deadly battle along the banks of West Chickamauga Creek 150 years ago this September. In remembrance of the soldiers’ bravery and willingness to lay down their lives upon their country’s altar, park rangers and historians will provide walks at the exact times and over the very ground where this struggle took place. There will be a total of 16 tours, each spanning 90 minutes, over the three day period. Each tour originates at a different location and time.
For detailed information concerning specific tour summaries, tour times, and locations, please check the “Ranger Guided Programs” section of the 150th anniversary webpage at http://www.nps.gov/chch/planyourvisit/150th-anniversary-ranger-guided-programs.htm or pick up the latest issue of the park’s newsletter, “The Battlefield Dispatch” at the Chickamauga Battlefield Visitor Center or at the Lookout Mountain Battlefield Visitor Center.
Additionally, a special rededication ceremony will take place on September 20. One hundred and fifty years prior, in 1863, Brigadier General William Lytle lost his life while rallying his blue-clad troops to stop the Confederate breakthrough. He was a published poet before the war and was well known by men in both armies. As a testimony to his character, Confederate officers even placed a guard around his body until it could be sent through the lines, back to his family in Cincinnati, Ohio. By the turn of the century, a large, three sided cannonball pyramid stood as a memorial to where Lytle fell on the battlefield. However, over time, the pyramid was stripped of all but one layer of its cannonballs. This was how the monument appeared for years, at least until now.
Through a joint effort of the National Park Service, the Friends of Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, and the Lytle Camp of the Sons of Union Veterans, the Lytle Monument has been restored and will be unveiled 150 years after the general’s death at 1:30 p.m. on Sept. 20. The public is invited to participate in this special rededication to this brave and valiant soldier. Parking for this program will be in the Recreation Field on Chickamauga Battlefield. In association with this commemorative event, the red trail (i.e. equestrian riding trail) will be closed throughout the day Friday, September 20.
Please note that all programs will be conducted rain or shine. Most parking will take place in fields throughout the park. In the event of inclement weather, mired vehicles may need to be towed at the owner’s expense.
For more information about programs commemorating the 150th anniversary at Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, contact the Chickamauga Battlefield Visitor Center at 706 866-9241, the Lookout Mountain Battlefield Visitor Center at 423 821-7786, or visit the park’s 150th anniversary webpage at http://www.nps.gov/chch/planyourvisit/150th-anniversary-of-the-campaign-for-chattanooga.htm.