• The legendary battle between Confederate guns and US ironclads at Fort Donelson, February 14, 1862.

    Fort Donelson

    National Battlefield Tennessee

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  • The Eagle has Flown!

    The juvenile eagle at Fort Donelson has fledged. The eagles now reside at the Confederate River Batteries, stop #4 on the driving tour. Visitors are encouraged to view and admire, but asked to keep a respectful distance, as this is their home.

Graves' Battery

Graves' Battery
Graves' Battery
Part Staff

Placed here to guard the Indian Creek Valley, this six-gun battery saw more

action when it moved in support of the Confederate breakout attempt near the

Forge Road (see stop 9).

*In June of 2011, gates were installed at Graves' Battery to assist the park in protecting the resources while park personnel are not on duty. The gate will be opened by 8:00 AM each morning, and closed at 4:30PM each evening effective November 6, 2012.

Rice Graves

Rice E. Graves was born in Rockbridge, Virginia, but grew up in Kentucky. He received a Presidential appointment into the United States Army after his impressive showing at West Point Academy, but resigned this position to join the Confederate States Army. He received praise for his service at Fort Donelson. He died during the Battle of Chickamauga in September of 1863.

View towards Graves Battery Loop - 1935

Graves' Battery loop as it appeared in 1935. New columns have been installed at this location to replicate those installed by the War Department during the years they managed the park.

Did You Know?


There was a significant enslaved population in Stewart County, TN, before and during the 1862 battle. After the Union victories at Forts Heiman, Henry and Donelson, many freedom seeking slaves sought refuge at these forts, even establishing a community near today's Fort Donelson National Cemetery.