Officials with Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, Tennessee Civil War Heritage Area and Friends of Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park have scheduled a weekend of events marking the 150th anniversary of the Battles for Chattanooga. Multiple programs will be conducted Friday through Monday in and around the city, with a final program Wednesday in Ringgold, Ga.
* Friday, Nov. 22: Lincoln Memorial University professor Dr. Earl Hess discusses “The Significance of the Battles of Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge” at 7 p.m. in Walker Library at McCallie School, 500 Dodds Ave.
* Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 23-24:
* Telegraph/signaling demonstrations at 10:30 and 11:30 a.m., 1:30, 2:30 and 3:30 p.m., plus Civil War medical demonstrations and pioneer/engineer programs at Point Park atop Lookout Mountain.
* Ranger-guided tours of Point Park, 11 a.m., 1 and 3 p.m., at the entrance gate ($3 fee for ages 16 and older).
* The Cravens House will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, allowing visitors to learn more about the Battle of Lookout Mountain, poetically known as “The Battle Above the Clouds.” On Saturday, living historians portraying Union and Confederate soldiers will ascend the mountain from the base and provide demonstrations of their experiences during the battle before continuing their ascent to Point Park on Sunday morning.
* At the Chattanooga Arboretum and Nature Center, 400 Garden Road, living historians portraying Union soldiers will discuss and demonstrate Civil War signaling, their means of communication before telephones and radios, at 10:30 and 11:30 a.m., 1:30, 2:30 and 3:30 p.m. Union infantrymen also will provide interpretive programs discussing the crossing of Lookout Creek and the assault on Lookout Mountain at 10 and 11 a.m., 1, 2 and 3 p.m. A display of Civil War artifacts will be set up in Humphreys House. A barbecue luncheon is set for noon-2 p.m. Saturday. Guests will eat beneath tents while the 8th Regiment Band of Rome, Ga., entertains. Regular admission fees apply for programs, and the luncheon is $25. For reservations, call 423-821-1160 or visit chatta noogaaanc.org.
* To the east of Lookout Mountain, living historians portraying Confederate artillerymen will provide interpretive programs and firing demonstrations on Missionary Ridge throughout the weekend. Parking will not be available on the ridge. Visitors should park at McCallie School and ride the free shuttle.
* At the foot of Missionary Ridge, living historians will be stationed atop Orchard Knob throughout the weekend, providing programs about the Confederate experiences while it was an outpost between the Union and Confederate lines. Parking at Orchard Knob is limited. Park at McCallie School for the Orchard Knob shuttle as well.
The free shuttle buses for the programs at Orchard Knob and Missionary Ridge will leave McCallie School starting at 8:45 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. On Saturday, the last shuttle will depart from the school at 3:30 p.m., and on Sunday, the last shuttle will depart from the school at 2:30 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 23: Park historian Jim Ogden leads 90-minute tours focusing on the action that took place on Orchard Knob, 10 a.m., 1 and 3 p.m., beginning at the northeast corner of the Orchard Knob Reservation. Parking is available at Orchard Knob Elementary School or McCallie School (with shuttle ride).
Sunday, Nov. 24: Ogden leads tours on the actual date of the “Battle Above the Clouds.”
* At 9 a.m., a two-hour walking tour will be conducted regarding Gen. Joseph Hooker’s feint from Smith Hill and Bald Hill in Lookout Valley. Follow the special event signs from Brown’s Ferry Road to Parker Lane and the program parking area.
* Later that afternoon, Ogden will lead tours at the Cravens House Reservation on Lookout Mountain. At 1 p.m., he will lead a 90-minute walking tour, beginning at the rifle pits near Cravens House, titled “Geary’s Division Strikes the Confederate Left Flank.” At 3:30 p.m., he will lead a 2-mile, 90-minute, walking tour that will discuss the fighting around Cravens farm and the conclusion of the Battle of Lookout Mountain. This tour will begin at Cravens House. Parking for these tours will be at the Cravens House.
* Monday, Nov. 25: Ogden will conduct tours of Missionary Ridge at 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. on the actual 150th anniversary of this pivotal battle in the Campaign for Chattanooga. Tours are free but will require tickets. They originate from McCallie School. Follow the link to download and print tickets (look near the bottom of the webpage): www.nps.gov/chch/planyourvisit/special-programs-for-the-battles-for-chattanooga.htm.
Visitors must obtain tickets before they arrive to guarantee a place on a tour. Participants should check in with park staff at least 15 minutes before their scheduled tour. At 15 minutes before the tour, tickets for anyone who has not yet checked in will be released for other visitors.
Wednesday, Nov. 27: Park guide Lee White and the University of West Georgia’s Dr. Keith Bohannon will meet participants at the Ingles parking lot in Ringgold, 5044 Alabama Highway, at 2 p.m. for a car caravan tour of the rear guard action fought in the area 150 years ago. The Battle of Ringgold Gap was the final battle in the struggle for Chattanooga.
Please note that all programs will be conducted rain or shine.
For more information, call 706-866-9241 or 423-821-7786.