Historic Markers Across Tennessee

Gibbs Crossroads - Crossroads of War

Marker ID:  
Location: at the intersection of Carthage Road (State Highway 56) and Union Camp Road (State Highway 262), Red Boiling Springs, TN
County: Macon
Coordinates: N 36° 26.933    W 085° 52.846
  36.44888333    -85.88076666
Waymark: None


Gibbs Crossroads
Crossroads of War

Places once prominent in Tennessee’s antebellum transportation routes are sometimes almost forgotten places today. This road intersection was of significant strategic value in fighting the war in Tennessee’s Upper Cumberland region. During the Civil War, countless soldiers and cavalrymen passed through Gibbs Crossroads.

Confederate Gen. Braxton Bragg established a temporary headquarters at the crossroads in September 1862 during his Kentucky Campaign. From his camp here, Bragg wrote about his Federal opponents to Confederate Gen. Leonidas Polk, “We have captured an important mail, giving us their plans. They are greatly demoralized, dishearten, and deceived; utterly in the dark as to our movements.” Bragg ordered Polk to “press the matter of supplies” and told him to “seize the railroad at Cave City (Kentucky) immediately, and if possible by some arrangement secure some rolling stock.”

Fighting came to the crossroads in the spring of 1863. On May 11, 100 men of Union Major F. M. Davidson’s 14th Illinois Cavalry engaged 125 men of Confederate Gen. John Hunt Morgan’s command. Federal losses were one officer and two privates wounded, and four taken prisoner. Confederate losses were two killed, one wounded left behind, and several wounded carried off. Davidson’s cavalrymen fell back from the crossroads, leaving it open, temporarily, for Confederate movements.

A Union camp was located four miles west on Union Camp Road behind Union Missionary Baptist Church.

Erected by Tennessee Civil War Trails.