| American History Stories, Volume IV|
|by Mara L. Pratt|
|Stories of the great conflict from the time Lincoln became president and the southern states seceded, through the battles of Bull Run, Shiloh, Antietam, Vicksburg, Gettysburg, Chickamauga, until the close of the war. Includes poems, songs, and illustrations commemorating the events. Ages 8-12 |
BATTLE IN THE VALLEY OF CHICKAMAUGA
The only stronghold now left to the Confederates in the
West was Chattanooga. They had been driven from place
to place by the Union army, from Kentucky, through
Tennessee, until they are now on the very border of Georgia.
You remember, in the first stories of this war, you were
told that there were many Unionists in Tennessee; and that
it is believed that the State would never have seceded had
the Unionists been allowed to speak in the convention
which was held there.
You can imagine, then, the delight of these Tennessee
Unionists, when Gen. Burnside marched into one of their
largest cities, and planted there the Union flag.
It had been a long time since they had seen the good old
Stars and Stripes, and it is said that many a one cried for
joy when once more they saw the "red, white and blue."
 On every side, the people crowded around Burnside and
his men, offering them food and drink—many of them
robbing their own poor homes, that they might bring
something to the Union soldiers.
Meantime, Rosecrans, our Union general, followed Bragg,
the Confederate general, on to Chattanooga, a little town,
lying in a sort of gateway between the mountains, and very
nearly on the border line between Tennessee and Georgia.
Both Bragg and Rosecrans knew that here would be a
final battle, which would decide who should hold Tennessee—the
Confederates or the Unionists. Bragg, therefore,
had sent for help to all the other generals round about;
and now he had an army far outnumbering the Union
A terrible battle was fought here in this beautiful valley
of Chickamauga, in which our army was sadly defeated.
Rosecrans retreated, leaving 16,000 dead and wounded upon
Rosecrans, although he was a brave general, and had
been very successful before, was blamed for having lost
this battle, and General Thomas was put in command.
Grant, the quiet general who smoked so much and talked
so little, was now in command of all the Western forces.
He came to Chattanooga now to see for himself how matters
stood. Before he could go to Thomas, he telegraphed,
"Hold Chattanooga." The reply that Thomas sent will
 show you somewhat of the firm character of the man. "I
will hold it or starve."
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