New Civil War Sesquicentennial And Fall Color Cruises In Chattanooga

Tuesday, September 10, 2013 - by Amanda Stravinsky

Soon brilliant colors will decorate the mountains surrounding Chattanooga. Two-hour “Awesome Autumn” fall color cruises will be offered daily aboard the River Gorge Explorer beginning in October. The Tennessee Aquarium also has two new cruises for those who want to experience the entire 26-mile length of “Tennessee’s Grand Canyon.”

A three-hour “River Gorgeous” cruise will depart 10 a.m. Nov. 2 from the Chattanooga Pier bound for historic Hale’s Bar Dam. Guests registered for a second cruise will board a bus at noon at IMAX to meet the boat in Marion County. Disembarking passengers will then ride the bus back to Chattanooga.

Chattanooga is rich in Civil War history, landmarks and legend. This fall will be a great time to cruise the Gorge as Tennessee officially commemorates the 150th anniversary of the Battles for Chattanooga. Several special cruises have been scheduled to focus on specific Civil War events that changed the course of history:

"Over the Plateau"- 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Sept. 7

Discover how soldiers endured the elements and traversed the rugged local terrain to play a key role in the Battle of Chickamauga in the late summer of 1863.

"Sharpshooters and the Siege"- 12:30-2:30 p.m. Oct. 5

Visitors will learn the intriguing history related to the actions of Confederate sharpshooters in the Tennessee River Gorge during the siege of Chattanooga in October of 1863.

"Brown's Ferry Raid"- 9:30-11:30 a.m. Oct. 27

Commemorate the day of the 150th Anniversary of the Federal Strike against Brown's Ferry. The raid successfully established the "Cracker Line" and was the major turning point in the Battles for Chattanooga.

"Sherman's Crossing"- 1:30-3:30 p.m. Nov. 23

Learn how the subsequent Battle of Missionary Ridge ended the Battles for Chattanooga in 1863. For more information, visit

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