Best Civil War Sites
Courtesy of the U.S. National Parks Service
Shiloh National Military Park, 120 miles from Memphis, seems a million miles from anywhere, just as it did back in 1862. The battlefield is now a quiet rolling landscape beside the Tennessee River, but landmarks named during those clashes (Hornet’s Nest, the Bloody Pond) evoke the soldiers’ experience—so profound that much of the acreage was donated by veteran groups, both northern and southern, who bought land and erected monuments to fallen comrades. After a 12-mile car tour, trace the path of the Confederates’ retreat to Corinth Crossroads, 22 miles south of Shiloh in Mississippi. The railroad crossroads was the junction of north/south railroads and east/west railroads, so whichever army held the town controlled troop and artillery movement along the rails. The desire for control drove both sides to the battle of Shiloh.
Don’t Miss: Hagy’s Catfish Hotel, a glorified fish shack near the Shiloh park, is worth a stop for a meal overlooking the river.