100 Riverfront Parkway
Chattanooga, TN 37402 Phone:
The Union’s initial efforts to capture the strategic railroad center at Chattanooga culminated at Ross’s Landing.
Following a series of dramatic marches and deceptions, elements of the Union Army appeared on Stringer’s Ridge, directly across the river from the landing, on August 23, 1863. For the better part of the day, Union shells whizzed into the city and the Confederate fortifications along the river. The attack, coordinated with shows of Union force in Hamilton Valley, aimed to make the Confederate high command believe that the Union Army intended to cross the Tennessee River north of Chattanooga.
Their real intention, however, was to cross the Tennessee south of Chattanooga and then cross Sand Mountain and Lookout Mountain well behind the Confederate forces.
By September 7, the Confederates realized the Union Army’s true plan and evacuated the city. A southern newspaper remarked: “The enemy attacked with his Knight both our Queen, Atlanta, and our Castle, Chattanooga. Did it require a moment to decide what should be the move?”
On September 9, 1863 three Union soldiers rowed across the river at Ross’s Landing and seized the ferry. According to a soldier in the 57th Indiana Volunteer Infantry, “A horse ferry-boat, left by the enemy, was used in crossing the river, and before night the colors of the 97th Ohio were planted on a fort near Cameron Hill. The other regiments soon followed and at night our command bivouacked on the green close to the river…Which gave us possession of the long-wished-for stronghold, Chattanooga."
- By September 7, the Confederates realized the Union Army’s plan and evacuated the city.
- On September 9, 1863 three Union soldiers rowed across the river at Ross’s Landing and seized the ferry.