Corinth Battlefield Unit

Stream of American History
Stream of American History

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Corinth, Mississippi: The Crossroads of War


In the early years of the Civil War, the town of Corinth, Mississippi was one of the most important strategic locations in the country. Two of the Confederacy’s longest railroads crossed each other in this small town, a place where most of the county’s eligible voters wanted to remain in the Union. When war broke out with the Confederate attack on Fort Sumter in April 1861, Corinth became a large staging area for regiments to gather before being sent to fight in all corners of the Confederacy. After Major General Ulysses S. Grant captured Forts Henry and Donelson in February 1862, and Nashville, Tennessee fell to Major General Don Carlos Buell, the Confederate commander in the west, General Albert Sydney Johnston, fell back to Corinth and concentrated a Confederate army with the intention of destroying the advancing Union armies.

Johnston’s concentration and subsequent attack on the Union armies resulted in the Battle of Shiloh, fought April 6-7, 1862. After the battle, the Confederate army retreated to Corinth and finished creating an extensive defensive line around the town. From April 29 to May 30, 1862, the Union armies under command of Major General Henry W. Halleck laid siege to Corinth. On May 30, 1862, the Confederates abandoned Corinth, which allowed the Union armies to occupy the town. In October 1862, a Confederate army under the command of Major General Earl Van Dorn returned to Corinth and attacked the Union garrison under command of Major General William S. Rosecrans, resulting in a Union victory at the two-day Battle of Corinth, fought October 3-4, 1862.

Although much has changed in Corinth since the Civil War, some things have stayed the same. Two active railroads still intersect near the heart of town as they did during the Civil War, and portions of the battlefield and siege lines are preserved for visitors today to view. A portion of a contraband camp where approximately 6,000 formerly enslaved men, women, and children fled to freedom is preserved as a space where visitors can reflect on the meaning of freedom, sacrifice, and dignity.

Shiloh National Military Park also preserves the battlefield at Davis Bridge, where the final fighting of the Corinth Campaign occurred. Davis Bridge is approximately 18 miles northwest of Corinth, near Pocahontas, Tennessee. It is accessible by automobile.

 
Brick building sitting on top of a grassy hill under a blue sky with white clouds.
The Corinth Civil War Interpretive Center

NPS Photo

What to Know Before Visiting


The Corinth Civil War Interpretive Center is a unit of Shiloh National Military Park. General Albert Sidney Johnston used Corinth as a staging ground to prepare for the Battle of Shiloh, and Shiloh would not have been fought had Corinth’s rail junction not been of high strategic importance. It is recommended that visitors begin their Shiloh visit at the Corinth Civil War Interpretive Center before following the same route Confederate soldiers took to get to Shiloh. No trip to the park is complete without a visit to Corinth!

Entrance Fee: No fee

Hours of Operation: Open 8:00 am to 5:00 pm seven days a week (Closed on Thanksgiving Day, December 25, and January 1.)

Address: 501 W Linden Street Corinth, MS 38834

Phone Number: (662) 287- 9273

Last updated: May 8, 2022

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

1055 Pittsburg Landing Road
Shiloh , TN 38376

Phone:

731 689-5696

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