2021 Seminar in the Woods – Revised

Revised schedule for 2021

Mission Statement: The purpose of the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park Study Group is to create a forum to bring students of the American Civil War together to study and explore those events in the fall of 1863 that led ultimately to the creation of the Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park, as well as explore other nearby Civil War-related sites.

COVID NOTICE: Due to the state of Coviid in the country, we are eliminating the bus tour on Friday and will substitute two other battle walks for Friday morning and afternoon.

Thank you for your understanding.

Tour Leaders:  Jim Ogden and Dave Powell

Date: Friday, March 12, and Saturday, March 13, 2021; on foot and by car caravan.

All tours begin and end at the Visitor’s Center. We will not be gathering inside, but instead will hold a short talk in the field outside the VC before departing.

Friday evening, 7:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. – Q&A Panel with Jim Ogden, Dave Powell, and others (as announced)

 Site: TBA

Friday

Car Caravan – Friday Morning, 8:30 to Noon: A. P. Stewart and Bate’s Breakthrough, 4 PM September 19.

On the afternoon of September 19, Confederate General A. P. Stewart’s three brigades were committed to action in the woods east of Brotherton Field. After several hours of see-saw action, Stewart’s brigades achieved two significant ruptures of the Union lines; Clayton’s Alabama Brigade pushed through Brotherton Field to emerge at the east edge of South Dyer Field, while Bate’s mixed Georgia-Tennessee Brigade drove northwest, into Poe Field. Exhaustion, a lack of support, and a vigorous Union response triggered the eventual retreat of Stewart’s forces. In the morning’s walk, we will consider the Confederate side of this fight, largely tracking Bate’s brigade.

Car Caravan – Friday Afternoon, 1:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.: The Federals seal the breach – Brotherton Field, 5 pm September 19.

The Federal response to Stewart’s breakthrough was rapid and effective. A number of different brigades were ultimately involved in this response, including that of William B. Hazen, only recently disengaged from the fighting in Brock Field. We will track that response, following Hazen’s command from Poe Field to Brotherton Field

Saturday

Car Caravan – Saturday Morning, 8:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.: Lucius Polk assaults the Kelly Field Line, 11 am, September 20.

John C. Breckinridge’s assault into Kelly Field came within a hairsbreadth of success. D. H. Hill’s other division, under Patrick Cleburne, faced a much more difficult proposition. All three of Cleburne’s brigades ran into stiff resistance, which was compounded by the disjointed divisional advance. We will follow Polk’s brigade as it strikes the Kelly Field Line.

Car Caravan – Saturday Afternoon, 1:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.: Leaving Kelly Field: Dodge’s and Barnes’s Brigades on September 20.

The Union left flank of the Kelly Field line on September 20 came together in haphazard fashion. Eventually, two brigades – those of Joseph Dodge and Sidney Barnes – drawn from two different divisions, from two different corps, comprised Thomas’s Left in Kelly Field. The story of their fight, and retreat, is among the most confusing elements of Chickamauga. We will explore the positions and experiences of these two commands at the end of the day on September 20, 1863.

Costs for Friday and Saturday: no charge.

Fees already raised in excess of our costs (as well as any donations) will be used to support the causes of battlefield preservation, interpretation, and renovation.

 In 2020 the Study Group donated $500 to the Jewell Monument fund, run by the Friends of Chickamauga and Chattanooga, for maintenance and restoration needs, and $500 to the American Battlefield Trust, in response to an appeal to help save several western battlefields, including a piece of Missionary Ridge.

Bathroom Note: The Park is still running on reduced hours. The restrooms at the Visitor’s Center will not be open until 8:30 a.m., and will close at 5:00 p.m. The VC itself will not open until 11:00 a.m. Make sure you plan accordingly.

Please note that everyone is responsible for their own lodging, meals, snacks and incidentals.

Thank you, see you in March. 

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