Historic Markers Across Georgia

The Bloody First Day

Marker ID:  
Location: On Brothernton Rd, east of Alexander Bridge Rd.
County: Catoosa
Coordinates: N 34° 55.406    W 085° 14.629
  34.92343333    -85.24381666
Style: Interpretative Sign **
Waymark: WMA8GN
The Bloody First Day Marker  


The Bloody First Day
Fighting in the Chickamauga Woods continued into the night

Throughout the day on September 19, 1863, men were thrown into the fighting as soon as they arrived on the field. Neither side could control the battle which expanded in a southerly direction (behind you) as the day wore on. In the thick woods soldiers fought hand to hand and sometimes became confused and fired on their friends. Casualties were heavy.

At sunset Gen. Braxton Bragg, Confederate commander, tried one more assault on the Union line. He ordered Cleburne´s and Cheatham´s Divisions to attack near this point. In the growing darkness, the battle raged to your left and right along the Brotherton Road. Both sides became confused and fired at any rifle musket flashes they saw.

Brig. Gen. Preston Smith, a Confederate brigade commander, got lost in the dark woods and stumbled into an enemy position. He was killed by a point blank Union volley about 220 yards southeast of here (behind you)


The Bloody First Day