Talk:Battle of Lookout Mountain

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Apologies to the Wikipedia audience for the recent eclipse fiasco. I received an email from another editor who claimed that there was no lunar eclipse on that day. He pointed me to a Wikipedia page based on a NASA website that listed no such eclipse for 1863, but what he and I did not notice is that this was a list of 18th-century BC (or for some reason, they refer to it as "-1800 BCE"). Someone quickly corrected this, and I just modified it a little to remove the footnote pointing out the momentary error, which is something we do not normally do in Wikipedia citations. Hal Jespersen (talk) 18:40, 25 November 2013 (UTC)

Christopher Benson (talk) responded: It is I who must apologise. I noted that NASA's records showed a partial lunar eclipse on 25 November 1863, peaking at 96.25% of a total eclipse around 1:00 am (Tennessee, Georgia local time). This essentially confirmed reports from that night, so I removed the following sentence from the article:
However, astronomical records contradict these [lunar eclipse] memories.
I wished to make temporary note of the reason, and this Talk page had never been used before. I "somehow hoped" that it would be quickly seen and removed by the previous editor. My explanatory footnote to the main article should not have referred to a previous version of the encyclopedia. I also failed to observe that I was modifying a change by a very well-respected contributor, made only six hours earlier. I must disagree on one point though. It was minor and brief, engendered by NASA's inconsistent nomenclature. This was no lunar fiasco of information. For that you must go directly to NASA's web site. Christopher Benson (talk) 11:40, 26 November 2013 (UTC)

Cravens House[edit]

I feel as though Cravens House and it's importance to the battle and the following Southern campaign of the war should be further discussed and that the information currently given about it should be cited further. It is discussed in the article, but it is not made to seem very important to the Battle. It was a key location in the battle and was fairly strategically important(don't quote me on this) I believe it also served as the command center for a fairly important union general following the battle. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Jonathan.filson (talkcontribs) 14:52, 22 September 2014 (UTC)

Feel free to edit the article responsibly, including citations. The crucial part of the battle was on the "bench" of the mountain, where the house was also located, but the house had no particular significance other than proximity to the fighting. Prior to the battle, some Confederate officers resided there. After the battle, the house was destroyed (but later rebuilt). Hal Jespersen (talk) 15:53, 23 September 2014 (UTC)

Battle or skirmish?[edit]

As an amateur I would not hazard to edit a page that is already under curation, but having visited this page to see a map while reading Grant's _Personal Memoirs_, I might suggest a minor emendation.

First, uncontroversially, the quotation cited in Note 36 does not actually appear in the _Personal Memoirs_. E.B. Long, editor of the 1952 edition (of which my text is a republication), does add a footnote indicating that Grant was nonetheless reported to have made the quoted remark; the citation given is J.R. Young, _Around the World with General Grant_, p.306. I offer this pedantry in service of a more substantive quibble: I respectfully suggest that it is wrong to characterize the remark as a denigration of Hooker's achievement rather than merely a description of the magnitude of the engagement. Long's note includes the comment that "the majority of authorities feel that this title ["Battle Above the Clouds"] is a myth," and offers the quotation from Grant in support. Grant in fact gave Hooker perhaps more credit than he earned: he reports his telegraph to Washington regarding the action as including, "Troops from Lookout Valley carried the point of the mountain", which induces the editor Long to intrude another footnote: "Hooker occupied the point of the mountain the following morning, November 25, after the Confederates evacuated it." This is to say that the sidebar quotation from Geary is not consistent with the facts: the supposedly-impregnable part of Lookout Mountain was not assaulted by the Union, let alone carried. This goes some way toward explaining later complaints of myth-making.

All these quotations are from p.336 of the 1982 Da Capo edition of the _Personal Memoirs_, ISBN 0-306-80172-8.

I might add that Grant's view of the action on Lookout Mountain as strategically no more than a diversion seems to me correct. That the result was more significant than expected had less to do with any special valor on the part of Hooker or his soldiers and more to do with the inadequacy of the Confederate defense (as already documented here). It is certainly true that victory at Missionary Ridge would have induced a Confederate evacuation of Lookout Mountain without any shots fired.

I apologize for the prose style of this comment. Grant's own style is to me contagious :-).

Addendum: At the end of his memoir, Grant adds assessments of certain of his subordinates. His comments on General Hooker include the following: "[H]is achievement in bringing his command around the point of Lookout Mountain and into Chattanooga Valley was brilliant." — Preceding unsigned comment added by Blumsha (talkcontribs) 18:19, 10 January 2015 (UTC)