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

Cleburne's Fort

Chickamauga Campaign Heritage Trail

 
 
Cleburne's Fort Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, August 5, 2014
1. Cleburne's Fort Marker
Inscription. The Confederate Army of Tennessee occupied Chattanooga in early July, 1863. The Confederates were expecting the pursuing Federal Army of the Cumberland to cross the Tennessee River well above Chattanooga, cut off the Confederate forces at Knoxville, and attack Chattanooga from the north. Security for the Railroad was a primary concern. Learning that east Tennessee Unionists had burned two railroad bridges in the Tyner area, General Patrick R. Cleburne, an Irish born Division commander was sent to guard that area.

To protect the railroads at Tyner and defend the approaches to Chattanooga, Cleburne immediately began constructing four large earth-work redoubts, or forts, in and near Tyner's Station. With walls twelve feet high and 200 to 300 feet in diameter, the forts had embrasures for cannon and openings for rifles, and the works were surrounded by rifle pits. General Cleburne made his headquarters near one of the main forts at Tyner.

One of the soldiers later wrote that "While encamped at Tyner's General Cleburne kept the troops busy by drilling and by constructing forts and earthworks." The four forts constructed by Cleburne were built of earth with hand labor using picks, shovels and wheel barrows. The first fort was built a short distance south of the house that Cleburne used as his headquarters and about 2000
Cleburne's Fort Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, August 5, 2014
2. Cleburne's Fort Marker
Close-up view, that is displayed on the marker, of General Patrick Cleburne.
feet north of the railroad. It was also near the unfinished railroad from Tyner to Harrison. The second fort was built about 2000 feet south of the railroad. The third fort was constructed around 2000 feet north of the intersection of the modern U.S. highways 11 and 153, while the fourth was built on a hill about 2000 feet south of this intersection.

The Federal forces were very much aware of the significance of Tyner's Station. The records show that after the Confederate withdrawal to Georgia in September, 1863 the 123rd Illinois Mounted Infantry Regiment, with Wilder's Brigade of Mounted Infantry Regiment that included the 17th Indiana, and 92nd Illinois and Lilly's 18th Indiana battery, crossed the Tennessee River on September 10, captured a "large rebel mail" at Tyner's Station. Other sources indicate that Union troops burned two caissons at that location.

After the Battle of Missionary Ridge, the fort at Tyner was occupied by the Federal Army for the rest of the war. Colonel Horace Boughton of the 143rd New York Infantry, commanding a brigade including that unit, was in command at Cleveland with the responsibility of guarding the East Tennessee and Georgia Railroad, from Chattanooga to Cleveland, etc. Boughton reported on December 3, 1864, that he had 200 men and two pieces of artillery behind a good earthwork at Tyner's Station.

In October,
Cleburne's Fort Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, August 5, 2014
3. Cleburne's Fort Marker
Close-up view, that is displayed on the marker, of a map made by Colonel William E. Merrill, Chief Engineer of the Army of the Cumberland, that shows the location of Tyner's Station.
1864, Colonel Lewis Johnson, a German born Federal officer, was ordered to the fort at Tyner with the 44th US Colored Infantry Regiment. The 44th was a noted unit of the USCT that had been captured by the Confederates at Dalton, Georgia. While at Tyner, Colonel Johnson reorganized the regiment and got it up to strength through recruitment.
 
Erected by Chickamauga Campaign Heritage Trail.
 
Location. 35° 4.127′ N, 85° 9.428′ W. Marker is in Chattanooga, Tennessee, in Hamilton County. Marker is on Hickory Valley Road south of Bonny Oaks Drive, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. The marker is located on southeast corner, of the grounds of Tyner Baptist Church, just south of the southern driveway entrance to the church grounds. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2934 Hickory Valley Road, Chattanooga TN 37421, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Bonny Oaks School (approx. 1.5 miles away); Confederate Cemetery (approx. 1.5 miles away); Tennessee Valley Railroad And Museum (approx. 2.8 miles away); Harrison Academy (approx. 3 miles away); Lowrey's Brigade (approx.
Cleburne's Fort Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, August 5, 2014
4. Cleburne's Fort Marker
Close-up view, that is displayed on the marker, of Colonel Lewis Johnson.
4.6 miles away); Govan's Brigade (approx. 4.6 miles away); 37th Ohio Infantry (approx. 4.6 miles away but has been reported missing); 30th Ohio Infantry (approx. 4.6 miles away but has been reported missing). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Chattanooga.
 
Categories. Forts, CastlesWar, US Civil
 
Cleburne's Fort Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, August 5, 2014
5. Cleburne's Fort Marker
View of the marker looking south along Hickory Valley Road. In the distance can be seen the railroad crossing that the fort was originally built to protect for the Confederates.
Cleburne's Fort Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, August 5, 2014
6. Cleburne's Fort Marker
View of the marker looking north along Hickory Valley Road. Just beyond the marker is a view of the southern driveway entrance onto the church grounds.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on May 8, 2015, by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio. This page has been viewed 349 times since then and 68 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on June 8, 2015, by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio.
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