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Chattanooga in Hamilton County, Tennessee — The American South (East South Central)
 

Crucial Supply Lines

East Tennessee Railroads and Bridges

 
 
Crucial Supply Lines Marker image. Click for full size.
By Leah Tibbs, November 2, 2018
1. Crucial Supply Lines Marker
Inscription.  Two strategically important railroads met in Chattanooga. The Western & Atlantic Railroad (W&A) from Atlanta was finished in 1850. A few hundred yards to your left, it joined the East Tennessee & Georgia Railroad (ET&G), which was completed from Dalton, Georgia to Knoxville in 1855 and extended to Chattanooga in 1859. As efficient movers of troops and supplies, the Chattanooga rail junction was an important strategic objective for both Union and Confederate commanders.

Multiple W&A and ET&G bridges crossed Chickamauga Creek nearby. In November 1861, Union sympathizers attempted to burn the ET&G bridge but found it too closely guarded; however, they successfully burned two nearby W&A bridges.

In April 1862 James Andrews and more than twenty Union soldiers in civilian disguise, stole a train near Atlanta and headed northward, intending to burn these bridges behind them—an event known as the Great Locomotive Chase. The Confederates captured the raiders before they reached the Chickamauga bridges and tried and executed Andrews and seven men.

Confederate soldiers burned both bridges as they retreated from Chattanooga
Missionary Ridge Tunnel image. Click for full size.
By Leah Tibbs
2. Missionary Ridge Tunnel
East Tennessee & Georgia Railroad
Courtesy Steven R. Freer
in November 1863, but failed to stall the Union army's pursuit. At the ET&G stone arch bridge, Union General Ulysses S. Grant and his army discovered that only a temporary wooden section was burned. Grant's engineers repaired it in an hour and the pursuit continued. After the war, new stone piers were installed to handle heavier trains, but the locations of the Chickamauga Creek crossings remain largely the same. Today these bridges help tell a story of the importance of railroads during Tennessee's Civil War.
 
Erected by Tennessee Civil War Trails.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Tennessee Civil War Trails marker series.
 
Location. 35° 4.03′ N, 85° 12.385′ W. Marker is in Chattanooga, Tennessee, in Hamilton County. Marker can be reached from Cromwell Road 0.7 miles west of Jersey Pike. The marker is located at the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum near the sidewalk leading from the parking lot to the museum. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 4119 Cromwell Rd, Chattanooga TN 37421, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Tennessee Valley Railroad And Museum (within shouting distance of this marker); Bonny Oaks School (approx. 1.4 miles away); Cleburne's Division (approx. 1.8 miles away); Polk's Brigade
Chickamauga Creek Bridge image. Click for full size.
By Leah Tibbs
3. Chickamauga Creek Bridge
Courtesy artist T. C. Walker
(approx. 1.8 miles away); a different marker also named Cleburne's Division (approx. 1.8 miles away); Wright's Brigade (approx. 1.8 miles away); Lowrey's Brigade (approx. 1.8 miles away); 47th Ohio Infantry (approx. 1.8 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Chattanooga.
 
Also see . . .
1. Western & Atlantic Railroad. RailGa.com. Georgia's Railroad History & Heritage information on the W&A Railroad with pictures and maps. (Submitted on June 6, 2019, by David Tibbs of Resaca, Georgia.) 

2. East Tennessee & Georgia Railroad. RailGa.com. Georgia's Railroad History & Heritage information on the ET&G Railroad with timetables and maps. (Submitted on June 6, 2019, by David Tibbs of Resaca, Georgia.) 

3. The Great Locomotive Chase: General vs. Texas. The Southern Museum located in Kennesaw, Georgia has on display the original restored "General" steam locomotive that James Andrews stole in the Great Locomotive Chase. (Submitted on June 6, 2019, by David Tibbs of Resaca, Georgia.) 

4. Civil War Trails. Official site for the Civil War Trails series. Here you can choose a state and download maps to visit each site. (Submitted on June 6, 2019, by David Tibbs of Resaca, Georgia.)
U.S. Military Railroad locomotive, Chattanooga, ca. 1864 image. Click for full size.
By Leah Tibbs
4. U.S. Military Railroad locomotive, Chattanooga, ca. 1864
Courtesy National Archives & Records Administration
 

5. Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum. Official site of the TVRR with locomotives and railcars on display. They also operate rail excursions both steam and diesel. (Submitted on June 6, 2019, by David Tibbs of Resaca, Georgia.) 
 
Categories. Bridges & ViaductsRailroads & StreetcarsWar, US Civil
 
Map of Chattanooga and vicinity, 1888, showing railroads. image. Click for full size.
By Leah Tibbs
5. Map of Chattanooga and vicinity, 1888, showing railroads.
Courtesy U.S. Geological Survey
 

More. Search the internet for Crucial Supply Lines.
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 14, 2019. This page originally submitted on June 5, 2019, by David Tibbs of Resaca, Georgia. This page has been viewed 72 times since then. Photos:   1. submitted on June 5, 2019, by David Tibbs of Resaca, Georgia.   2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on June 6, 2019, by David Tibbs of Resaca, Georgia. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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