Chattanooga Civil War Round Table Meeting is February 18

Siege and Battle of Knoxville is Topic

Thursday, February 13, 2014

 The Chattanooga Civil War Round Table will hold its regular monthly meeting on Tuesday, February 18, 2014.  The meeting is at 7 PM and will be held in the Millis-Evans Room of Caldwell Hall on the campus  of the The McCallie School (enter the campus from Dodds Avenue and follow the signs to the Academic Quadrangle and Caldwell Hall). 

Historian Dorothy Kelly of Knoxville is the speaker.  Historian Kelly's address is entitled "’...a Want of Confidence:’ Longstreet's East Tennessee Campaign;" it examines the November, 1863, Siege and Battle of Knoxville.  The meeting is free and open to the public.            

"At the appointed hour I fired the signal guns from a batter near where we had had the fight with {Union Brigadier General William P.} Sanders, putting in shells & sending them to burst over the enemy's line.  Soon we heard a chorus of rebel yells break out & we knew our infantry was on the go.  I put a few guns, which could shoot without firing over our infantry, to throwing shell just behind the fort to catch any reinforcements........"

So James Longstreet's defacto Chief of Artillery Colonel Edward Porter Alexander described the beginning of the assault on Fort Sanders at Knoxville.  For those who participated in this action on both sides, Knoxville was as much a battle as any of the others they experienced during the war. 

But, aside from the actual assault on Fort Sanders and the campaign's origin with Braxton Bragg relative to his dispute with Longstreet, Old Pete's Knoxville Campaign is usually overlooked or just "footnoted," overshadowed by what happened on Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge 110 miles or so and a few days earlier. 

While in the end perhaps not as determinative as say the Forts Henry-Donelson, or Vicksburg, or Chattanooga, or Atlanta, campaigns, the November-December, 1863, Knoxville Campaign deserves far more attention than it usually gets.  It is insight into several key players in the war--Longstreet, Ambrose Burnside, even Ulysses Grant and William Sherman. Its outcome guaranteed conditions that set the stage for one of the most vindictive environments to come out of the war.

 In her talk "’...a Want of Confidence:’ Longstreet's East Tennessee Campaign” Historian Dorothy Kelly will examine this under appreciated campaign that played out over the ground several scores of miles to the northeast that drew it many of those who had or would play a role in the environs of the Gateway to the Deep South.  Come out and learn some of the reasons why we should ourselves become better students of at least this Knoxville Campaign. 

 Ms. Dorothy "Dot" Kelly is a life-long Knoxville- and East Tennessean long interested in that region's history, particularly that of the Civil War-era.  Now a retired health care professional, she has long been active in the Knoxville Civil War Round Table as an officer, committee chairman, and program chairman.  She has played important roles in the Round Table's efforts to preserve and interpret Fort Dickerson over the years and most recently in it's Sesquicentennial recognition of the Siege and Battle of Knoxville.  She has also served in various roles with and/or for the Tennessee War's Commission, the Tennessee Civil War Preservation Association, and the East Tennessee Historical  Society.  She speaks regularly on Knoxville's Civil War history to both local groups and other Civil War Round Tables and has spoke several times over the years to the Chattanooga Civil War Round Table on such subjects as Sanders' and Carter's raids and most recently, the Bridge Burners. 


James Ogden, III, President

Chattanooga Civil War Round Table

 {The Chattanooga Civil War Round Table is a group of area citizens interested in the study of the American Civil War.  The Round Table meets on the third Tuesday of each month, normally in the Millis-Evans Room of Caldwell Hall on the campus of The McCallie School on Missionary Ridge (enter off Dodds Avenue at Union Street).  At each month’s meeting, a historian or author from the region or from across the nation, or a member, makes a presentation on some aspect of the conflict.  The meetings are free and open to the public and membership in the Round Table is open to all with an interest in the era of the War Between the States.}

Chester Martin Remembers Henry Acheson

As a young woman in St. Elmo, my mother knew Henry Acheson through his sister, Celeste. Mother was always aware of his foundry on West 38th Street, although with little idea of what products he made. For years his foundry was an unsightly dump, (to be kind) as you gazed in through the jungle-like growth of nondescript foliage. Dirt roads appeared to wind spookily back in the ... (click for more)

Chester Martin Remembers Early Television In Chattanooga

A high school friend and I kept up to date on the progress of the "coaxial cable" which wormed its way slowly from New York City, promising to bring the wonders of network television to Chattanooga. That feat was finally accomplished in 1954 by WDEF. WDOD had desperately hoped to be first, but they lost a court fight for the FCC-allotted channel. (Perhaps WDOD was able to acquire ... (click for more)

City Council Votes To Allow 7-Story Apartment Complex By Southside Historic District, But Ground Floor Must Be Commercial

The City Council voted in favor of the seven-story building on Cowart Street at Tuesday night’s council meeting. However, Councilman Chris Anderson passed an amendment for the ground floor of the building to be used as commercial space rather than residential, as originally intended by Belle Investment Company. A full house gathered at the meeting to hear the verdict for ... (click for more)

Flood Warning Issued For Some Area Creeks; TVA Dams Spilling High Volumes Of Water

A flood warning has been issued for some area creeks, including South Chickamauga Creek in Hamilton County, West Chickamauga Creek near Fort Oglethorpe and Lookout Creek that runs from Trenton, Ga., to Lookout Valley. TVA dams are spilling high volumes of water with the Tennessee River Valley receiving 3-5 inches of rain over the last few days and up to two more inches are ... (click for more)

City Council Travesty

  City Council just voted for a seven-story downtown building in a district zoned for 48' height limit. Setback to the building behind will be 6'. This is to allow the current building owner access to their property to maintain it. What I do not understand is how in the fire district this proposed building is in can a parking deck seven stories tall not have alley access ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Heard About Henley?

Within minutes after a woman posing as “Katie Brown” posted a picture of her dog with its mouth taped shut on Facebook last Friday morning, hundreds of thousands of people became part of a global witch-hunt. Her Facebook page listed her location in South Daytona Beach and Avon, Conn. But police officers at both locations found out her real name is Katharine F. Lemansky and on Monday ... (click for more)