Battle Chickamauga: Overview

This was the most significant Union defeat in the Civil War. The union had been unstoppable up to this point. Tactical mistakes by the Union led to their downfall in what is considered the war with the second highest number of casualties. This battle occurred in Catoosa County and Walker County, Georgia and resulted in 34,624 casualties of which 16,170 were Union soldiers.


September 19-20, 1863


Extreme Northwest Georgia, just south of Chattanooga.

Who won the Battle of Chickamauga?

The Confederacy won the Battle of Chickamauga.

Why is this important?

Most significant Union defeat in the Civil War.

Why is Chattanooga important?

Chattanooga was a vital rail hub (with lines going north toward Nashville and Knoxville and south toward Atlanta), and an important manufacturing center for the production of iron and coke, located on the navigable Tennessee River. Situated between Lookout Mountain, Missionary Ridge, Raccoon Mountain, and Stringer's Ridge, Chattanooga occupied an important, defensible position.

What happened?

Weeks of preparation led to a couple of days of fighting to secure the tactical ground around Chattanooga, Tennessee.
Tactical mistakes resulted in a Confederate victory and the end of the Union’s offensive push into southeastern Tennessee and Northwestern Georgia.

What does Chickamauga mean?

There are several possible Cherokee translations but the most popular is “River of Death.”

Other Battle of Chickamauga sections: