Skip to Content

Nashville Civil War Markers - December 15, 1864

Fort Negley Site

The guns of Fort Negley, commanding three turnpikes to the South and Southeast, opened the Battle of Nashville, Dec. 15, 1864. This site was selected by Capt. J. S. Morton as the key strongpoint in the Federal line around the city. The European style fort named for General James S. Negley, was built of stone, logs, earth and railway iron.

Location: Chestnut Street and Ridley Avenue

Steedman's Line of Departure—Dec. 5, 1864

The left of the Federal main defensive line rested on the Cumberland River north of here, extending southeast to the Murfreesboro Pike. From this line, Steedman's Provisional Detachment of six brigades made the secondary attack against the Confederate right. Thomas' main attack was delivered against the Confederate left.

Location: Former Nashville General Hospital site, Hermitage Avenue

Steedman's Position—Dec. 15, 1864

From a line of departure running N.E.-S.W. through here, Maj. Gen. Steedman's Provisional Detachment of 6 brigades at 6:00 a.m. launched a holding attack southwestward against the Confederate right, on high ground about 2 miles south. The main attack, about 5 miles west, enveloped the Confederate left after an all-day fight.

Location: Lafayette Street and Claiborne Street

Lee's Position—Dec. 15, 1864

Here, Stephen D. Lee's Corps, Army of Tennessee, bestrode the highway and railroad. Cheatham's Corps held the right of the line, which ran northeast about 2 miles to Rains' Hill. After the Confederate left was broken in the afternoon's fighting, Lee's Corps fell back to high ground about 1½ miles south.

Location: Franklin Road and Thompson Lane

IV Corps Jump-Off Line—Dec. 15, 1864

Using the defensive salient 500 yards east, Wood's Corps, with the XVI Corps on its right, swung southwest to envelop the left of the Confederate line, 1 ½  miles south, and pushed it back in spite of determined resistance. The XXIII Corps (Schofield) followed in support.

Location: Twenty-first Avenue, South, and Linden Avenue

Assault on Montgomery Hill—Dec. 15, 1864

500 yards east of here, Maj. Gen. T. J. Wood led an assault by his IV Corps against the Confederate skirmish line on the hill, eventually carrying it. Attacking the main line about 600 yards south, Wood was unable to take it by direct assault, the divisions of Loring and Walthall holding fast until the XVI Corps, moving past their left, forced withdrawal.

Location: Twenty-first Avenue, South, and I-440

XVI Corps Line of Departure—Dec. 15, 1864

Supported by a division of Wilson's cavalry, A. J. Smith's Corps moved westward astride Harding Road, displacing Ector's Confederate Brigade from positions across the pike northward to the west of Richland Creek.  This brigade outposted the Confederate left flank; the main line was along Hillsboro Pike.

Location: West End Avenue and Orleans Drive

Cavalry Action—Dec. 15, 1864

The right of the main Federal defense line crossed Charlotte Pike here. In the opening phase of the battle, mounted and dismounted cavalry of Wilson's Corps moved out of the Federal works, supporting the advance of Smith's XVI Corps in a turning movement against the extreme left flank of the Confederate positions.

Location: Charlotte Avenue between Thirty-third Avenue, North, and Thirty-fifth Avenue, North

Cavalry Action—Dec. 15, 1864

Forming the outer arc of the Federal main attack, R. W. Johnson's 6th Cavalry Division, Wilson's Corps, here hit Rucker's Confederate Cavalry Brigade, west of Richland Creek. Withdrawing southward to Harding Road, Rucker held his ground there until bypassing Federal infantry forced further withdrawal to Hillsboro Pike late in the afternoon.

Location: Charlotte Pike past Fifty-fourth

Defense by Ector’s Brigade—December 15, 1864

In position from here northward along high ground, Ector’s Brigade of French’s Confederate Division, commanded by Colonel Daniel Coleman, outposted the left of Hood’s line.  Attacked by the Federal XVI Corps, supported by artillery and part of the Cavalry Corps, it was overwhelmed.  It withdrew southeast to Hillsboro Pike. 

Location: 4243 Harding Road

Redoubt No. 1—December 15, 1864

Stewart’s Confederate Corps held this salient of the left of Hood’s defenses.  A thin infantry line ran south behind a stone wall on the east side of the pike.  After the routing of Ector’s Brigade on Harding Pike and successive overrunning of Redoubts Nos. 3, 4, and 5 to the south, Stewart’s position was flanked; he withdrew southeast toward Granny White Pike. 

Location: Hillsboro Road and Hampton Avenue

Battle of Nashville—Confederate Line

Trenches about 20 feet north of this point held by Loring’s Division, were the center of the Confederate main line before the Battle of Nashville.  On December 15, 1864, Redoubt No. 1, a key artillery salient 200 yards NW, fired on Federal forces until overrun by General Wood’s troops late in the day, when Confederates retreated toward Granny White Pike. 

Location: 1808 Woodmont Boulevard

Confederate Outpost—December 15, 1864

100 yards west was Redoubt No. 3 in the Confederate system of detached works beyond the main line. It was overrun by the enveloping attack of Wood's IV Corps from the northwest.

Location: Hillsboro Road and Graybar Lane

Lumsden's Defense—December 15, 1864

0.3 mile west was Redoubt No. 4 in Hood's detached supporting works. Garrisoned by Lumsden's Battery of smoothbore Napoleons, supported by 100 men of the 29th Alabama Infantry under Capt. Foster, it was finally overrun by the assault of 12 infantry and 4 dismounted cavalry regiments, supported by four Federal batteries.

Location: Hillsboro Road and Hobbs Road

Taking of Redoubt No. 5—December 15, 1864

Hood's Redoubt No. 5 was on this hill. Couch's division of the XXIII Corps, sweeping to the south of the route of Smith's XVI, captured it and the hills to the east late in the afternoon. Wilson's cavalry, crossing the highway about 2 miles south, advanced rapidly eastward, flanking the Confederate defenses.

Location: Hillsboro Road and Burton Hills entrance

Confederate Defenses—December 15, 1864

Stewart's Corps, Army of Tennessee, held this part of Hood's original line, extending east about 1500 yards, and west and south about 1 mile to Hillsboro Pike. After the turning of his left, about 4:00 p.m., Stewart established a new position extending southward, to the west of Granny White Pike.

Location: 3506 Granny White Pike

Confederate Defenses—December 15, 1864

After being outflanked by the advance of the Federal XVI Corps (Smith), Loring and Walthall put their divisions in a defensive line west of this road, facing westward. Here, their determined defense brought Federal advances against the Confederate left to a close for the day.

Location: Granny White Pike and Shackleford Road

Cheatham's Line—December 15, 1864

Holding a line running N.E. and S.W. and with its right on the N.C. and St.L. R.R. at Rains' Cut, Cheatham's Con- federate Corps stood off the attacks of Steedman's brigades.. Part of Cheatham's Corps was moved to the support of Stewart's line late in the afternoon: collapse of the left wing forced Cheatham's withdrawal southward during the night.

Location: Nolensville Road and Peachtree Street