Point Park ADA Accessibility Video

Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park


Hello everyone, my name is Chris Young and I'm one of the park rangers here at Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park. We want to welcome you to Point Park. This is part of Lookout Mountain Battlefield, which is part of Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, and our goal today is going to be taking a look inside Point Park for those who may have accessibility issues of getting around the park, and those who can't readily get to some of the areas within within Point Park, that may have some difficulties doing so and so we're going to take you to a few stops out in the point, which will give you a better view of what is out there including several overlooks and the Ochs Museum and Observatory, down at the very tip of Lookout Mountain. So, the next time we'll see you is right inside Point Park, through the entry gate. I do want to remind you though, that there is an entry fee of $10 per adult, those are 16 and older. Fifteen and younger get in for free. If you are an adult, you have to pay an entry fee to get into Point Park, unless you have a park pass. We would also encourage you to take a tour with a park ranger if you're here, or to download the National Park Service's new app, and be able to take a tour through that app. Tours aren't conducted on a daily basis. So, we do encourage you to either call or to look on our website to make sure that those tours are available before you come, and we will see you next, on just the other side of the gate, inside Point Park.

Welcome back everyone. Hopefully, you were able to get through the entrance to Point Park, that you paid your fee or used your your park pass and were able to gain entrance into the park. We're right inside the large entry gate that looks like the castle, that we were just standing in front of, just inside the entrance to Point Park, in between these two interpretive waysides. I want to mention that you should have picked up a brochure as you were coming in, and in that brochure there is an inset map that will give you some points of interest within the park. There is also, and I mentioned this before, a tour that you can take that is available through the National Park Services app, that you can download through your Google Play or iTunes store. When you first enter in, there is a carriage walk to your right and left that is entirely paved and it is circular. It's a quarter of a mile and is completely ADA accessible. So, you're more than welcome to take that carriage walk around. What we're going to do is take you down to a to a few areas that are accessible and then they become inaccessible from one of the routes that you can can continue the tour, and we'll explain that a little bit later, but as you enter the park, if you want to bypass those two carriage walk areas to your right and left, you can come onto this stone walkway here and read these waysides. One is about Point Park. The other is about the Battles for Chattanooga and how they occurred in November of 1863. There is a map also on one of these, one of these waysides that will give you a view of Point Park and the area around here as well. So, next what we're going to do is walk down this flagstone walkway, down to the first artillery overlook, which is the Parrot gun overlook, as well as to the New York Peace Monument, the tallest monument within Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park. So, we'll head down that way

and just keep in mind that as we're walking down the carriage walk, that this is accessible for you to be able to go down. It's ADA accessible, down the carriage walk here, and so you're more than welcome to come down. We're going to be walking past some interpretive signage. So, you're more than welcome to stop and read these signs that have been here since around the turn of the century, the 20th century that is.

To our right is going to be the artillery overlook, the Parrott gun overlook, and we'll walk down here first.

There'll be more interpretive signage to our left here.

You'll also see monuments within Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, especially here in Point Park. Union tablets in blue Confederate tablets in gray and red. We're here to the first overlook.

We have two, large, black painted Parrot 20-pounder guns in front of us, and this gives us an overlook, a view of Chattanooga and the Tennessee River below. Once again, this is completely accessible for for all of those who do need to utilize this. It's ADA accessible. So, we have a view of Chattanooga and the Tennessee River and the valley in between, just behind us. Now, what we'll do is we're going to head to your left in this direction,

and if we took a right, we would be going down a series of stairs. So, we're going to go back to our left here,

take a slight right down this pathway.

The New York Peace Monument is going to be completed in 1907, dedicated in 1910. The tallest monument within the entire national military park's 9,000 plus acres is right here in front of us. So, as we come out we can can move down to New York Peace Monument. The statuary on top, a Union and Confederate soldier shaking hands.

In the center of the monument, in the rounded center, they're going to be all of the New York units that participated in the Chickamauga and Chattanooga Campaigns as well as around the base of the monument they're going to be metal tablets, plaques, on four sides of the monument, that are going to give you some biographical information of the Battles on Lookout Mountain and in Chattanooga. So, you're able to walk around the New York Peace Monument in its entirety, and then come right back onto this flagstone walkway and then what we will do is we'll make our way back up to the entry gate and go back around the carriage walk again.

Welcome back everyone. Hopefully you've made it safely around the carriage walk back to this spot on the eastern side of Lookout Mountain, and just to your left will be the stairs that we bypassed when we made our turn and went back to the New York Peace Monument that's behind me, and we went back up the stone walkway and came down the carriage walk. This is at that intersection and so we're going to continue down this carriage walk, down to our overlook at Garrity's Alabama Battery, and once we get to this overlook we're going to turn it over to one of our other park rangers and he's going to take the tour the rest of the way through Garrity's Battery and a little bit beyond and so we'll stop right down here at Garrity's Battery.

Again, to your left, if you're going down the carriage walk you'll be able to see the New York Peace Monument from a different angle. You'll see the soldiers not from their from their rear, but from the front now, those soldiers actually clasping and shaking hands.

We'll continue down to Garrity's Battery. This is where it's going to get tricky as far as ADA accessibility goes, because from this point on we have the carriage walk that will continue around to the western side of the mountain, that will take you back up to the entry gate, but from this point down to Garrity's Battery, physically, and then down to the Ochs Museum and Memorial Observatory and then back up to part of the western overlook is unfortunately, inaccessible. So, that's where this film really comes into play, and I'm going to let one of our other park rangers introduce you to Garrity's Battery and take you on the rest of the trip down to the Ochs Museum and back. So, we'll see you in just a few minutes. Hello and welcome everyone. My name is Will Wilson. I'm one of the park rangers here at Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park and we are standing here at Garrity's Alabama Battery. Where you see two bronze Napoleon guns overlooking the city of Chattanooga and the Tennessee Valley. From this location though you can also, on a fairly clear day, see the Blue Ridge Mountains off to the east and then, as well, Walden's Ridge, off to the north and west. Of course, just below us is the Tennessee River coming around Moccasin Bend. This is a location, that is going to see these two cannons play a role in the Battles for Lookout Mountain and it is something that these Confederate artillery positions are in place really to be a roadblock, if you will, to getting supplies to the Union Army in Chattanooga down below us. Just like today, how Interstate-24 comes across the front of Lookout Mountain, in 1863, it would have been the Federal Road coming across the point of Lookout Mountain, as well the Nashville to Chattanooga Rail Line coming around the point of Lookout Mountain. Then you have, of course, the bend in the river. These cannons are in place to act as that road block and they will do a pretty good job of doing that, all the way through September into October of 1863, as the siege of Chattanooga will continue. From here, we're going to be stepping down to the Ochs Observatory, which is a museum and observation platform where you're going to be able to see a 180 degree view of Chattanooga and the Tennessee Valley. So, come along and that'll be our next stop.

And again, our carriage walk is going to continue back up the western side of the the loop here, and this is where we will have to go down some steps and unfortunately not ADA accessible, but this will hopefully allow you an opportunity to see what we do have here at the point of Lookout Mountain.

We do have here, where the trail splits. We'll be going to our left, going down a few more steps. However, if we did go right it is more of a ramp as it goes down, but there are some steps still involved.

And I will say that this is one of the more unique routes that you can take, because you are looking here against some of the sandstone, limestone features of Lookout Mountain itself, and you can see the striations, or those lines in that rock. This is actually sediment from an under water sea that would have been here about 350 million years ago and, of course, as the, as throughout time the sea will, of course, lead us to land and through erosion over the millions of years we will have these features that you can see today here, as you make your way down to the point of Lookout Mountain.

As well, depending on the time of year, and in particular spring early summer, you'll be able to see some of the flowering plants on the mountain. We have a Mountain Laurel here for example, that is actually just finishing up its bloom, but throughout the year you'll be able to the early spring and summer you'll be able to see Trillium and other flowering plants that here are residing on the slopes of the mountain itself.

And so, of course, this is really the highlight of what you'll see when you make your way here to the Ochs Museum and Observatory. The observation of deck that we have here, allowing for this 180 degree view of Chattanooga the Tennessee Valley. Just below us, of course, the Tennessee River, Moccasin Bend. Off to my, your left, my right is Raccoon Mountain. Off to the north and west, Walden's Ridge, also called Signal Mountain, because of Signal Point, that we have as a park unit on Signal Mountain. Of course, looking off to the east here, my right, my left your right, unfortunately through the haze you can just barely make out some of the tops of the Blue Ridge Mountains,

and then, of course, a little bit better view of the Tennessee Valley. We'll be stepping next inside the Ochs Museum and taking a look at some of our exhibits that are on display there.

Turning to our left, inside the museum, our first exhibit is about the Cracker Line. The Cracker Line was that supply line that is feeding the the Union army held up there in Chattanooga, as it was bottled up by the Confederates on the high ground, on Missionary Ridge, here on Lookout Mountain. It gets its nickname the Cracker Line because of the hardtack cracker that was the staple of a Union soldier's diet and as then this supply line gets opened it is "three cheers for the Cracker Line." Next, we do have a piece about Moccasin Bend. Moccasin Bend National Archeological District was established by Congress in 2003, and it is established to help commemorate, preserve, and protect some of the areas that saw 12,000 years of continuous American-Indian inhabitation, all the way from the periods of the Paleo-Indians, the Archaic period, the Woodland, the Mississippian, and then of course, the Cherokee. And we we all know the story of the Trail of Tears, where the five civilized tribes: the Cherokee; the Choctaw; the Chickasaw; the Muskogee, or the Creek; and the Seminole are forcefully removed from their native lands. The Cherokee are actually brought here to Chattanooga, but at that time Ross's Landing, and they are actually sent across the Tennessee River to Moccasin Bend in a staging area and from there will begin that journey on the Trail of Tears to Indian Territory or to Oklahoma today, but a lot of neat information on those periods of American- Indian history and their relevance here to the Chattanooga and Tennessee Valley area. Next, we will be looking at some of the historic photographs that were taken out here at the point of Lookout Mountain and one of the things about photography in the American Civil War is, we often times see several of the photographs from of the from some of the eastern battles Gettysburg, Antietam, you don't really see much for western battles like Chickamauga or Shiloh, and that's because photography was really centered in the northeast, in Washington D.C., in Philadelphia, in New York. They didn't really send photographers out west, but I will say, that probably one of the most photographed areas in the entire Civil War is going to be the point of Lookout Mountain, and that is because of this gentleman here Robert Lynn, who goes by the pseudonym Royan. He will actually set up a photograph studio here on the point and will charge soldiers a fee to have their picture taken out of the point, because even in the mid-19, excuse me even in the mid- 1860s, people know about Lookout Mountain. It is one of those iconic landmarks in our country, just like if we were to ask you if you knew of Mount Rushmore or the Washington Monument, Lookout Mountain is just that, and people want to have their picture taken here and so he will accommodate these soldiers, and so you'll see we do have photographs of soldiers taken out of the point of Lookout Mountain. Of course today, the point is closed for public access because, well, people today would probably do just like these soldiers as well and try to get their Snapchat photo taken at the point, and certainly some things can can happen that we would not want

to see happen so the point itself is closed, but we do have these photographs to to remind us of what it would have looked like at that time.

And finally, the last exhibit piece that we have is on signaling. Signaling stations were set up around Chattanooga on some of the various hills, and around the area. Of course, I mentioned Signal Point a minute ago. There was a signaling station on Cameron Hill, which today is where the Blue Cross Blue Shield headquarters of Tennessee is going to be located, but you can see the two flags here. One is white with the red square one is red with the white square. Those were the signal flags and we do have some other pieces that are significant with a single corps or a single station, allowing those men to send messages, to report of troop movements, and spread orders from a commander to other men in the company and the regiment, or whatnot, but a really neat piece that is also part of our Junior Ranger book that kids can actually decode a message using the cipher disk and so this is a really neat piece as well that we have for for you to see. Of course, the Ochs Museum was dedicated in 1940 to Adolf Ochs. Adolf Ochs was the publisher of the Chattanooga Times. He eventually becomes the publisher of the New York Times. He uses his wealth though in a philanthropic way, and one of those ways is by purchasing property here on Lookout Mountain and then donates it to the national military park, and thus the idea to honor his service in allowing some very significant property, that saw action during the Battle of Lookout Mountain, to be included within the national military park. This museum was dedicated in his honor. So we'll step back out and continue the tour.

And so, we've made our way back up from the Ochs Museum and we're standing here, again the carriage road just off to my right. We're going to step now just right here to these guns that you see behind me, which are part of Max van den Corput's battery and talk a little bit about what happens with these guns.

So again, we do have an interpretive plaque discussing the actions that the guns in this particular battery took on the morning of November the 24th, 1863, the Battle of Lookout Mountain, or as the nickname is given, the Battle Above the Clouds. One of the things though that will happen is as the Union army is making their approach up the slope of the mountain, engaging against the Confederates that are on this northwestern slope and begin pushing closer, the guns themselves are going to come into a problem. They will not be able to depress the tubes enough for them to become effective. Once the Union army gets underneath the range of those tubes, then these cannons are obsolete, and so that is when Captain Max van den Corput is going to order his soldiers in in the battery to take some of the shells and some of the case shot and light the fuses and use them as hand grenades tossing them over the side. Because again, the cannons are not going to be very useful. Eventually though this battery does fire about 33 rounds though before they have to start resorting to that hand grenade method, but this is one of the stops here within the park that you can get a pretty fair look at along the carriage road, but we're now going to step over here to the western overlook.

So of course, from here again, another great view looking over into Lookout Valley. Off to the north and and west again we're seeing Raccoon Mountain, portions of the Walden's Ridge, which is that eastern escarpment of the Cumberland Plateau. Off to the south, Sand Mountain again Lookout Valley. This is the area though, just below where I am, is how the Union army will approach the Confederate positions on Lookout Mountain. Crossing Lookout Creek, forming their line of battle, going basically all the way up to the palisade, or the vertical wall of the mountain, forming that line of battle back down to Lookout Creek. That's protecting their flanks, their left and their right flank, and then they begin a sweeping motion marching north along the slope of the mountain to engage those Confederates. Of course, this is where Confederate soldiers, if they were here in Point Park, which we've seen the the artillery positions, Confederates do see that these Union soldiers are are making their way around and it's going to be a challenging effort for the Confederates to defend this mountain, and we'll see a little bit more about that and some of our other programs, but again just a neat view from here on this western overlook. From here, we will head back up and make our way to, back to the entrance gate itself.

Hello again everyone, hopefully you've enjoyed your time here in Point Park with myself and Will, as we took you to places that are not easily ADA accessible. As we were leaving the western overlook with Will, we came up a set of stairs and took a right onto the carriage walk. This is where it ends, at the entrance gate. You'll see the exit sign behind me, and we hope that you have enjoyed your time. As you exit the gate, go to your right through the large entrance gate, the Army Corps of Engineers gate, the castle. Directly across the street to your right will be the Lookout Mountain Battlefield Visitors Center. Inside the visitor center you'll find a bookstore, as well as some exhibits. One, of which, is the large James Walker Battle of Lookout Mountain painting. Walker was a well-known military artist of the time, and was an actual eyewitness of the Battle of Lookout Mountain in 1863, and in 1870, he is commissioned to paint what you'll see in the visitor center. So, you don't want to miss that. In addition to restrooms at the visitor center, we do have a water fountain for you there, as well as parking behind the visitor center, if you have not already utilized that. Once again, we do hope that you've enjoyed your time here inside Point Park, part of Lookout Mountain Battlefield and part of Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park. We hope to see you again soon.


The views from within Point Park on top of Lookout Mountain are some of the most awe inspiring throughout the National Park Service. Unfortunately, some of these views are not accessible to visitors that have a mobility disability. We hope you find this video informative and useful, showcasing some of those views from the areas that are not able to be reached for persons with ADA accessibility.


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