Battle of Chattanooga Set Stage for Atlanta Campaign

Prelude

BATTLE OF STONES RIVER

On December 26, 1862, Major General William S. Rosecrans led the Union Army of the Cumberland out of Nashville, Tennessee, with orders to capture Chattanooga, Tennessee. Chattanooga was an important railroad junction that connected the upper Confederacy with the Deep South. Between Rosecrans and Chattanooga was Lieutenant General Braxton Bragg and the Confederate Army of Tennessee. On December 31, the two armies clashed at the Battle of Stones River (December 31, 1862, to January 2, 1863) near Murfreesboro, Tennessee. The Union army prevailed, and Bragg retreated south towards Tullahoma, Tennessee. In June, the Federals moved on the Rebels at Tullahoma, forcing Bragg to withdraw his army to Chattanooga.

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