The dust of time has spread a shroud
Upon the verdant hills-
And only monuments remain-
To show where men were killed.
Just south of Chattanooga-
Along a lazy creek-
Known as the Chickamauga-
Did the Yanks and Rebels meet.
The middle of September,
In eighteen sixty-three....
Braxton Bragg and his command
Were nearing Tennessee..
Rosecrans was on the move-
In the muggy autumn heat...
Just south of Rossville, Georgia
Did their armies chance to meet.
The hills were thickly wooded
Terrain was rough and steep-
And battle lines were very near-
Impossible to keep.
Sharp the fighting from the first,
Clouds of flame and smoke...
Darkness flared like scenes from hell
Before the daylight broke.
Polk confronted breastworks
Erected in the night-
And sacrificed his whole command
Ah, what a dreadful sight.
With the slaughter taking place-
Longstreet, called “Old Pete”-
Flanked the Federal battle line-
And havoc he did wreak.
Upon the crest of Snodgrass Hill
Bold Thomas made his stand-
And held the crest as hundreds fell
And died on every hand.
The Federal lines were ripped to shreds
The troopers reeled in shock-
Yet o’er the chilling Rebel yells-
He held just like a Rock.
The Indians had named it well-
The name is said to mean-
“The Place of Death” and so it was
The worst the war had seen.
Over thirty thousand lives-
Were sadly thrown away...
The trees were ruined as lumber-
By the bullets, so they say-
All is quiet on the field-
But sometimes late at night
You hear the tramp of soldiers feet
They’re marching out to fight.
And on the wind a rebel yell...
Faint and far away-
The roar of guns, and clash of steel
The sounds of deadly fray.
Old soldiers never seem to die-
At least that’s what they say..
But as the years roll slowly by
They merely fade away.