Shiloh National Military Park to  Commemorate 157th Battle Anniversary

The Franklin Farriers, old time baseball team.

SHILOH, Tennessee - Shiloh National Military Park will commemorate the 157th anniversary of the battle by offering a variety of real-time hikes, interpretive programs, music, and vintage baseball on the battlefield.

“The Shiloh battle anniversary activities from April 5 through April 8 will be our first signature event for 2019, and we invite everyone to come out to the park and remember the epic battle and the Americans who fought here in 1862,” said Park Superintendent Dale Wilkerson.

Volunteers and rangers will lead hikes and all access car caravan tours from April 5 through April 8, on a variety of subjects, from general battle overviews to actions at specific locations. Some of the tours have limited space, so the park asks that interested individuals pre-register for hikes and tours by calling the Shiloh visitor center at 731-689-5696. A complete schedule of tours is attached to this release, and also posted on the park website at www.nps.gov/shil.

Registered participants should meet the guides at the appointed sites and times, and are encouraged to wear appropriate clothing and footwear for the weather and terrain. Visitors attending more than one hike are encouraged to have food and water available. Insect repellent and sunscreen is also recommended.

On Saturday, April 6, in addition to the hikes, the park will host demonstrations, music and vintage baseball on the battlefield.

The Tennessee Association of Vintage Baseball will play a double-header in Duncan Field on Saturday. This is probably the first time baseball has been played on these hallowed grounds since the Union Army camped here in 1862. The first game between the Quicksteps Club of Spring Hill and the Phoenix of East Nashville will begin at 11:00 am. The second game will feature the Franklin Farriers versus the Stones River Scouts and starts at 2:00 pm. The games will be played according to the 1864 rule book. Everyone is invited to bring lawn chairs, blankets, and picnic baskets to see “America’s Pastime” played as the soldiers played it in the 1860s.

At 10:00 am, before the first baseball game, and during intermission between the two games, at around 1:00 pm, there will be mounted cavalry demonstrations in the upper part of Duncan Field, adjoining the baseball field. These presentations will include field maneuvers demonstrating cavalry tactics and weapons firings. Troopers will also perform saber drill, demonstrating the cavalrymen’s ability to used edged weapons in combat.

On Saturday, April 6, the park will also present artillery firing demonstrations for the public. At 10:30 am, 12:30 pm, and 2:30 pm, Shiloh will offer these cannon firing demonstrations across the street from the Visitor Center. Two cannon, known as a battery section, and two crews of living historians in period uniforms, will demonstrate the duties of Civil War cannoneers. Visitors will learn about the implements and projectiles they used, and the proper loading and firing procedures of the field artillery in the Civil War.

Also on Saturday, the public will be treated to Civil War music by the 52nd String Band out of Memphis. The 52nd String Band will provide visitors with a glimpse into the everyday lives of soldiers through the medium of music. The program will include a mixture of popular and patriotic songs which would have been played by regimental bands, and sung by soldiers in the camps.

For more information on the events taking place at Shiloh in 2019, call the park’s Visitor Center at 731-689-5696, go to our website at www.nps.gov/shil, or find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ShilohNMP.

Battle of Shiloh 157th

Anniversary Hikes

Fraley Field: The Bloody Battle Begins

Time: 5:15 a.m. to 7:00 a.m.

Parking: Meet at Visitor Center at 5:00 a.m.

Distance: Southern Hike – 1 Mile Roundtrip

Union Hike ------ 2 Miles Roundtrip

Terrain: Moderately Easy, on park roads and trails, but in the dark

Join Park Volunteer Bjorn Skaptason, and Park Ranger Timothy Arnold on a two hour battlefield hike which will introduce visitors to the events surrounding the opening shots of the battle. These hikes will travel the approach routes of the Union and Confederate soldiers toward Fraley Field, whose landscape witnessed the first exchange of hostilities and the beginning of the epic Battle of Shiloh. These individual tours will both arrive in Fraley Field at sunrise. Visitors will decide which hike they will follow upon arriving at the Visitor Center. The choices are to follow the Union reconnoitering party ordered out by Colonel Everett Peabody, while the Confederates will approach Fraley Field through the position of the 3rd Mississippi Infantry Battalion.

As if it was His

Custom: Colonel Joe Cockerill and the 70th Ohio Learn to Fight

Time: 8:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.

Parking: Park on the west side of the road south of Shiloh Church

Distance: 2 ½ Miles

Terrain: Moderately Easy, but with some off-trail hiking

Shiloh: Fiery Trial, the park’s orientation film, tells many compelling stories of individual soldiers and their experiences in the battle. Among these is the tale of sixteen year old Jon Cockerill of the 70th Ohio Regiment, and his father, Colonel Joseph Cockerill. The 70th Ohio participated in some of the most intense fighting of April 6th, all across the western side of the battlefield. The performance of the 70th Ohio stands in stark contrast to other green Union regiments in the battle, as well as the admirable service of Colonel Cockerill. Join Park Volunteer, Bjorn Skaptason, and follow the course of the engaging combat of these Buckeye State Volunteers from Shiloh Church to their final retreat across Tilghman Branch.

The Parallel of

Battle: The Hamburg-Purdy Road

Time: 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Parking: Meet at Rhea Springs (Tour Stop #6)

Distance: Approximately 6 Miles

Terrain: Easy to Very Difficult

Join Dr. Jeff Gentsch in examining how this integral landmark and communications artery influenced the development of the Battle of Shiloh after the Confederate army captured the encampment of the 5th and 6th Divisions of the Army of the Tennessee on the morning of Sunday, April 6th. Hiking from Rhea Field to the far left of the Confederate line, participants will move west to east along Hamburg-Purdy Road, discussing various fire-fights including the development of the battle around the crossroads, (Water Oaks Pond area), the abortive Confederate movements during the development of the Union defense of the Hornets’ Nest, and the action along the southern perimeter of Sarah Bell’s Cotton Field.

General Prentiss’ Green Division

Overwhelmed by

Confederate Attacks

Time: 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

Parking: Meet at Tour Stop #9 (Invasion of the Union Camps)

Distance: 1 Mile

Terrain: Easy to Moderate

General Benjamin Prentiss’ Division on the outer fringe of Union camps at Shiloh, was hit by an overwhelming force of Confederates on the morning of April 6, 1862. Although these green troops, some of whom had arrived the previous evening, inflicted severe casualties on some Confederate units, they were soon outflanked and swept from the field of battle. Join Park Ranger Charles Spearman and follow the battle lines of Colonel Everett Peabody’s and Colonel Madison Miller’s Brigades and examine the incidents in their brief but courageous stand.

Car Caravan Tour of the Battlefield

Time: 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Parking: Meet at the Visitor Center

Call 731-689-5696 to register in advance

In commemoration of Shiloh’s 157th Battle Anniversary, Park Volunteer Jimmy Whittington will lead a four hour car caravan tour of the battlefield. This tour will allow visitors the opportunity to follow the battle in the chronological order as it developed. The tour will take visitors to the high points on the battlefield in order to interpret the story of the bloody Battle of Shiloh. While visiting historic sites such as Fraley Field, the Hornets’ Nest, and the Peach Orchard, participants will be afforded the opportunity to ask questions of Mr. Whittington and achieve a better understanding of the epic battle.

The Union Center and the Hornets’ Nest

Time: 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Parking: Meet at Tour Stop #10 (Hornets’ Nest)

Distance: 2 Miles

Terrain: Moderate, passing through thick woods and crossing small streams

Join Park Ranger Timothy Arnold to learn about the severe fighting in the famed “Hornets’ Nest” of Shiloh. This hike will discuss the establishment of the area as a Union defensive position, units involved, small arms weapons and artillery used, as well as the truth versus the myth of the life and death struggle in this area. Learn about the Confederate attacks led by Colonel Randall Gibson’s Brigade, the leadership of Generals W.H.L. Wallace and Benjamin Prentiss, and the fate of each officer.

The Desperate Drive for Confederate

Victory

Time: 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Parking: Meet at Tour Stop #17 (Bloody Pond)

Distance: Approximately 2 Miles

Terrain: Moderate with some ravines

The Confederate objective at Shiloh was to drive in the Union left flank and cut their army off from Pittsburg Landing so they could not get supplies or reinforcements. By doing this, General Albert Sidney Johnston hoped to achieve a decisive victory over Grant’s army. General Stephen Hurlbut would fight a series of delaying actions on the Union left, which frustrated Confederate hopes of accomplishing their goal. Join Park Ranger Charles Spearman on this hike starting at the Bloody Pond, and explore the various positions held by Hurlbut as he faced off against General Johnston and his determined Confederate forces. This program will end with the death of General Johnston, the highest ranking American general killed in combat.

The American Civil War, the German Wars of Unification, and the Emergence of Modern and Total War

Time: 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Parking: Meet at Tour Stop #6 (Rhea Field)

Distance: 5 Miles

Terrain: Easy to Very Difficult

During the decade from 1861 through 1871, war and warfare began to evolve away from the restraints imposed upon nations by previous philosophies of applying armed force. Beginning and focusing on the lessons offered by the Battle of Shiloh, which some historians have labeled the first “modern” battle, Dr. Jeff Gentsch will lead a hike that will compare various aspects of Shiloh to other Civil War battles and engagements critical during the Wars of German Unification involving Denmark (1864), Austria (1866), and France (1870-1871). Topics will include the similarities and contrasts between these conflicts in strategic planning, operations and logistics, tactics, geography, developments in weaponry, and the problems experienced with the number of war prisoners increasing as a result of advancing technologies. Participants will examine how warfare evolved during this period, which created conditions for the onset of total war.

The Battle After Johnston: The Confederate Attempt to Fulfill the Battle Plan

Time: 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Parking: Meet at Tour Stop #17 (Bloody Pond)

Distance: 2 Miles

Terrain: Very Difficult, through deep ravines, across streams, and through underbrush off-trail. Appropriate hiking gear and footwear highly recommended.

After the death of General Albert Sidney Johnston the Confederates were faced with the challenge of completing their mission – to drive the Federals away from the river, force them into the swamps to the north and northwest, and destroy them – without the leadership of their inspirational commander. In the hours following Johnston’s death a number of high ranking Confederates attempted to seize the initiative and drive the attack home. Join Park Volunteer Bjorn Skaptason and explore the rugged terrain on the eastern edge of the battlefield and examine the fighting of the common soldier and the Confederate leadership guiding the continuing struggle to maintain the proposed battle plan.

Grant’s Last Line of Defense

Time: 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Parking: Meet in Front of the Visitor Center

Distance: 2 Miles

Terrain: Difficult, passing through thick woods, steep ravines, and crossing small streams

Follow Park Ranger Timothy Arnold on a hike which will lead participants on an examination of the Federal last line of defense on April 6th, 1862. Desperately needing to hold his position, General Grant tasked Colonel Joseph D. Webster with constructing a final line of defense on the high ground between Pittsburg Landing and the Snake Creek Bridge, both of which Grant needed to hold open for reinforcements. This hike will take participants along Grant’s line situated on the high ground north of Tilghman Creek, will travel down into Dill Branch Ravine to the Confederate side, and then examine the only major attempts to break the Union line.

General Lew Wallace Outflanks the

Confederate Line

Time: 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.

Parking: Meet at the Visitor Center

Distance: Approximately 2 Miles

Terrain: Moderate

General Lew Wallace started the Union advance on the morning of April 7th, 1862 and outflanked the piecemeal Confederate line forcing them to retreat back toward Shiloh Church. Although, Wallace was blamed for not arriving as early as expected on April 6th, he redeemed himself with his actions on Monday. Join Park Ranger Charles Spearman and explore the battle action of General Lew Wallace’s Division against the left flank of the Southern resistance to begin the second day of battle at Shiloh.

A Bluegrass Brigade in the Peach

Orchard: Colonel Sanders Bruce’s

Counterattack

Time: 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Parking: Meet at Tour Stop #17

Distance: 2 Miles

Terrain: Moderately Easy, over level ground and shallow ravines

This program tells the story of some Kentucky Unionists at Shiloh. When the Civil War began Kentucky, a border state, attempted to remain neutral. Many of the Commonwealth’s citizens, however, had no intention of sitting out the war. Thousands who were Confederate sympathizers went south to Tennessee while thousands more crossed the Ohio River to form Kentucky Unionist regiments in Ohio. Join Park Volunteer Bjorn Skaptason and discover the story of how these bluegrass Yankees arrived on the field on the evening of April 6th, and engaged in heavy fighting on April 7th in the same Peach Orchard that saw such slaughter on the first day of battle.

Car Caravan Tour of the Battlefield

Time: 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Parking: Meet at the Visitor Center

Call 731-689-5696 to register in advance

In commemoration of Shiloh’s 157th Battle Anniversary, Park Volunteer Jimmy Whittington will lead a four hour car caravan tour of the battlefield. This tour will allow visitors the opportunity to follow the battle in the chronological order as it developed. The tour will take visitors to the high points on the battlefield in order to interpret the story of the bloody Battle of Shiloh. While visiting historic sites such as Fraley Field, the Hornets’ Nest, and the Peach Orchard, participants will be afforded the opportunity to ask questions of Mr. Whittington and achieve a better understanding of the epic battle.

Crittenden Pushes the Center

Time: 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Parking: Meet at Tour Stop #2 (Confederate Monument)

Distance: 2 Miles

Terrain: Moderate, passing through thick woods and crossing small streams

General Thomas L. Crittenden’s 5th Division of General Don Carlos Buell’s Army of the Ohio was the center of the Union line as it began its counterattack on April 7th, 1862. To the troops fighting their way through the center of the battlefield that morning, the severity of the previous day’s combat became readily apparent. When the Union Division commanded by General Thomas Crittenden approached the dense thicket, which the day before was dubbed, “The Hornets’ Nest”, they ran into very heavy resistance. Over several hours of fighting the Union advance ground to a halt. Join Park Ranger Timothy Arnold on a hike which will provide a glimpse into the division’s advance, as they attempted to negotiate the tangled wilderness of the Hornets’ Nest, and drive the enemy from the Daniel Davis Wheat Field and the Hamburg-Purdy Road, where it halted as the battle drew to a close.

The Struggle for the Crossroads: The

Confederates Lose Their Chance at

Victory

Time: 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Parking: Meet at Tour Stop #13 (Water Oaks Pond)

Distance: Approximately 1 Mile

Terrain: Easy

Starting at noon, Confederate forces began falling back to the intersection of the Hamburg-Purdy and Corinth Roads. The Southern forces struggled to launch counter attacks to save what had appeared to be a certain victory. The fierce struggle at Woolf Field and Water Oaks Pond turned the tide of the battle. By 3:00 p.m. it became obvious that the Confederates would have to retreat toward Corinth, Mississippi. Join Park Ranger Charles Spearman and explore the battleground between Woolf Field and Shiloh Church, as he discusses the Confederate counter attacks and the Union advance on the afternoon of the second day of combat.

Shiloh: Frontier Home

Time: 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Parking: Meet at Tour Stop #16 (Peach Orchard)

Distance: 2 Miles

Terrain: Moderately Easy, over level ground and shallow ravines

The Battle of Shiloh occurred in a frontier community, and the people who lived in that community before the battle continued to live there afterward. Join Park Volunteer Bjorn Skaptason as he introduces visitors to the community of Pittsburg Landing, and explore the social and business life, agriculture, housing, and environment that dictated the day-to-day events of living. The neighborhood of Pittsburg Landing included some families of comparatively substantial means surviving side-by-side with their impoverished neighbors, and a small population of enslaved African Americans. Their struggle to survive each day, not just the two days of battle, demonstrates the challenges and changes of the westward stretching frontier.

The Final Fight of Shiloh: Fallen Timbers Car Caravan

Time: 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.

Parking: Meet at the Visitor Center

Distance: 8 Miles Driving

Terrain: Moderately Easy

The Battle of Shiloh ended when the Confederates withdrew from the Union camps on the evening of April 7th, 1862. Yet there was still fighting, and much more suffering to take place. The Union camps had been converted into a charnel house of death. The roads leading from Shiloh to Corinth were littered with dead and dying men and animals, and tons of once-useful machinery of war. On April 8th, elements of two Union divisions embarked on a reconnaissance in order to determine if the Confederates had really retreated, or if they were reforming for another attack. Join Park Volunteer Bjorn Skaptason and visit the site of the engagement at Fallen Timbers and hear the description of the final fight of Shiloh.

Draw a Badger out of its Hole: Sherman’s Northern Approach to Corinth

Time: 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Parking: Meet at the Corinth Civil War Interpretive Center

Distance: 8 Miles Driving, 2 Miles Walking

Terrain: Moderately Easy, either driving, or walking along open ground and trails

Before the battle of Shiloh Union General Charles F. Smith quipped that the Union army would be forced to go down to Corinth and draw the Confederates out of their entrenchments, “as you would draw a badger out of its hole.” When General Henry W. Halleck moved against Corinth he treated his enemy just as one would a dangerous animal, very carefully, and with little willingness to take risks. This policy dictated the tactics used by his subordinates in operating against Confederates on their parts of the line. Join Park Volunteer Bjorn Skaptason and explore how one Union division commander, William T Sherman, attempted to leverage his enemies from their positions while still complying with his commander’s conservative strategy.