The Top Civil War Attractions in Chattanooga, Tennessee

If you want to talk about World War II, you talk about Normandy and D-Day. If you want to talk about the Civil War, you have to talk about Chattanooga and the battle for the “Gateway to the Deep South”. If you have an itch for history, Chattanooga is the place to scratch it. Chattanooga has parks, monuments, cemeteries, and museums.

You could spend weeks in Chattanooga and still not see every Civil War venue. To keep you from wasting a single moment, here is a list and brief review of a few of the top Civil War Attractions in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

No trip to Chattanooga, Tennessee would be complete without a stop on Lookout Mountain. From the Craven House to Point Park, Lookout Mountain is saturated with Civil War sites. Point Park is located, as the name implies, on the point of Lookout Mountain. This park has monuments and plaques that explain its history, a tremendous view of the Chattanooga Valley, and is home to the Ochs Museum. The Ochs Museum has a large collection of Civil War memorabilia.

The Cravens House was a significant structure used by both Union and Confederate forces. Sitting on an overlook with an unobstructed view of the valley, the Cravens House was used as both a lookout station and headquarters. Built by Robert Cravens as his personal residence, the house survived the “Battle Above the Clouds” almost completely unscathed only to be burned down in a drunken brawl by occupying Union soldiers. Cravens rebuilt the house after the war.

The Chickamauga Battlefield, located just minutes from downtown Chattanooga, is a beautiful place for a family picnic and Civil War history lesson combined. Among acres of lush green fields and shady patches of forest, ghosts whisper to you. You can almost hear cannon fire in the distance. Monuments to the Union and Confederate soldiers who fought in the “Battle of Chickamauga” cover the grounds. The park headquarters has exhibits and a bookstore. It provides a great place to reflect and relax before taking the seven-mile driving tour of the battlefield.

The slopes of Missionary Ridge form a natural boundary to the southeast of Chattanooga. Its strategic importance is well documented. The winding roads that run the crest of the ridge are littered with overlooks, monuments, and mini-parks. Arthur McArthur Jr., the father of Douglas McArthur, was awarded the Medal of Honor for his bravery during the “Battle of Missionary Ridge”. Driving along the ridge gives you an idea of just how important the fledgling town of Chattanooga must have been to the soldiers who fought for its control.

Coming down from the ridge, stop by the National Cemetery in Chattanooga. Thousands of Union soldiers are interned in this beautifully landscaped site. It is also home to a monument with a replica of “The General”, the train from “The Great Locomotive Chase”, and the graves of six Medal of Honor winners who were hung by Confederate forces for their role in stealing the train.

Signal Mountain is home to Signal Point, the start of an intricate line of signaling posts from Chattanooga to Bridgeport, Alabama. This point provided intelligence on Confederate troop movements in the Chattanooga area. It overlooks the Tennessee River as the river passes through “The Tennessee Gorge”. No river traffic could pass this spot without being seen. You can picnic in the park while reading about the signaling system in use during the Civil War.

Chattanooga has all of this and more to offer avid students of history. The United States Army has long paraded its young officers through Chattanooga to study the brilliant maneuvers and heroic deeds performed on Chattanooga’s battlefields. Bring plenty of film for your camera and enjoy.

For more information contact:

Signal Point, on Signal Mountain, Tennessee
Open: Daily, 8:00am-dusk

National Cemetery
Chattanooga, Tennessee
Hours:The cemetery grounds remain open twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week for visitors.

Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park
P.O. Box 2128
Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia 30742
Phone Visitor Information
(706) 866-9241
(423) 752-5215

also check:

Point Park, on Lookout Mountain, Georgia-Tennessee

Tennessee Vacation – Chattanooga Area Convention & Visitors Bureau

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