Tennessee Civil War Attractions
Use the tabs above to learn more about trails, markers and other interpretive sites; battlefields, and the many Civil War-related museums and other attractions designed to help travelers understand the legacy of the war in Tennessee.
Tennessee's Civil War history is a study in contrasts: a secessionist state with staunch Union loyalties, divided cities held by both Union and Confederate troops, constant danger and hardship, and nagging uncertainty about friends, neighbors and families, about who was friend or foe.
Tennessee's Civil War tale is one of divided loyalties, crucial battles, and the wide-reaching devastation of "total war." People throughout the state were completely immersed in the economic, social, and physical effects of the conflict, subject to violence and terror, disease and malnutrition, heartbreak and loss, and military rule by both sides. The stories of the Underground Railroad and Emancipation bring out the other side of war in the African American struggle for freedom and citizenship. Many grim reminders of the war—as well as hopeful symbols of heroism and kindness—stand today as testament to how the war transformed Tennessee.
Mount Olivet Cemetery
This cemetery is the final resting place of nearly 1,500 Confederate soldiers. The Confederate Circle Monument marks the remains of individuals of all ranks. Mount Olivet is also the burial place for seven generals, including Benjamin F. Cheatham and William B. Bate. There is an annual tour of the cemetery with living history. Open daily. Admission is free. ...more
Mountain Home, Union Obelisk Monument and National Cemetery
<p>Mountain Home was built as a retirement home for Union veterans in ...more
The Tennessee Riverfront here underwent significant change during the war. Confederates built forts near the river beginning in 1862. Union occupiers, arriving in September 1863 constructed saw mills and ship repair facilities on the river. Escaped slaves lived near the river in Camp Contraband and provided labor on Union construction projects. Many in the camp enlisted in the United States Colored ...more
President Andrew Johnson Museum & Library
First (1841) college building. Includes President's personal books and Tusculum College archives on display. Oldest college in Tennessee. 23rd oldest in ...more
Salem Cemetery Battlefield
A self-guided tour amid the monuments honoring Union and Confederate soldiers killed in the December 19, 1862 battle near Jackson. Approximately 1,000 soldiers were engaged in the battle between General Forrest's cavalry and Union troops. Welcome Center, three tour stops, battle map inlay, five monuments and historical cemetery with reference to David ...more
Shiloh National Military Park
Established in 1894 to preserve the scene of the first major battle in the Western theater of the Civil War, Shiloh is considered one of the best preserved battlefields in the Nation. Besides preserving the site of the bloody April 1862 battle in Tennessee, the park commemorates the subsequent siege, battle, and occupation of the key railroad junction at nearby Corinth, ...more
Silverdale Confederate Cemetery
The final resting place for Southern soldiers who died at hospitals established by Confederate General Braxton Bragg near Chattanooga in 1862. A large stone arch is located at the entrance from Highway 11; and the cemetery is well maintained by local volunteers. Located just off of Exit 7B on ...more
Soldier in Grey
Dedicated on April 6, 1905, on the 43rd anniversary of the Battle of Shiloh. The hand-chiseled granite monument stands guard on the courthouse lawn at the center of Historic Court ...more
Finished in 1859, the historic Tennessee State Capitol is one of the oldest working capitols in the country. The distinctive tower is designed after the monument of Lysicrates in Athens, Greece. The architect, William Strickland, died in 1854 and is entombed above the cornerstone. The exterior and interior walls are massive blocks of limestone. During the Union occupation of Nashville (1862-65), the Capitol was tranformed into Fortress Andrew Johnson. The artillery located there never had to be fired in battle, but were used for drills and celebrations. The Capitol, still in use by state government, features numerous works of art, historical murals ...more
Tennessee Civil War Railroad Driving Tour
A brochure is available that features the history of three counties along the 78 miles of Civil War rail line. Former slaves were impressed by Federals to complete construction of the Nashville and Northwestern Railroad from the capital city to Johnsonville on the Tennessee River. This railway provided a valuable supply line for Union armies in the western theater of war. The laborers who worked on the line were inducted into the 12th and 13th U.S. Colored Infantry Regiments, among the first black military units organized during the war. ...more
The Carter House
This Registered Historic Landmark is now open to the public and serves as a memorial to the Carter family as well as the countless heroes in the Battle of Franklin. The modest brick home was the Federal Command Post while the family took refuge in the ...more