July is a busy month in American history. July 4 is of course Independence Day as well as the day in which BOTH Thomas Jefferson and John Adams passed away. In addition the anniversaries of the Battle of Gettysburg and the surrender of Vicksburg are remembered. With that in mind I would like to focus today on the little remembered Tullahoma Campaign in Middle Tennessee.
After the Battle of Stones River, which took place December 31, 1862 to January 2, 1863, the Union army under command of William S. Rosecrans sat in Murfreesboro. The Confederates meanwhile withdrew to positions along the Duck River and the Highland Rim. There the two armies sat until June of 1863 much to the frustration of Union leaders in Washington.
On June 23 Rosecrans finally made his move and in a campaign that saw limited fighting and much rain, Rosecrans out maneuvered Bragg out of Middle Tennessee with Bragg retreating all the way to Chattanooga, with the last elements of his army reaching Lookout Mountain around July 7. Though there was some fighting no great battle marks the campaign. Union casualties number between 500 & 600 with Confederate losses unreported.
For more information I encourage you to check out Michael Bradley’s book Tullahoma: The 1863 Campaign for the Control of Middle Tennessee.