Three Star Tour Explores Hiwassee River

“The Line of the Hiwassee River”

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On July 23, 2016, Three Star Tour participants boarded pontoon boats for an eleven mile trip on the Hiwassee River near Charleston, TN.   National Park Service historian Jim Ogden shared stories and maps describing the Native American, pre-Civil War, and Civil War military significance of the Hiwassee River.  At Charleston, participants got a close-up look of the pre-Civil War bridge piers, now supporting a modern railroad bridge.  After docking in Charleston, participants explored Civil War sites in Charleston including the Cumberland Presbyterian Church and the privately owned Henegar House.  (photo courtesy of Bruce Hari)

IMG_0582[1]While docked in Charleston, Historian Jim Ogden explains the significance of the East Tennessee and Georgia Railroad bridge which was a critical supply line between Knoxville and Chattanooga during the War.  The pre-Civil War bridge was burned in November, 1861 by Union loyalists and both sides damaged the rebuilt bridge during the War.  The modern railroad bridge in the background of this photo sits atop the original pre-Civil War piers.


The Charleston Cumberland Presbyterian Church served as a Confederate hospital in 1863.  Many of the injured troops were part of a cavalry unit sent to evacuate the town.




Tour participants stepped inside the Henegar House for a peek at the home’s historic and well preserved front hallway and parlor. During the War, the home served as the headquarters for both Union and Confederate generals.  Here General Sherman received orders in November, 1863, to take command of the column moving to relieve Knoxville.


Taking a break in the shade, participants enjoyed a wonderful lunch provided by volunteers and the Charleston-Calhoun-Hiwassee Historical Society.



Thank You!

TCWPA and the tour participants extend their appreciation to the Charleston-Calhoun-Hiwassee Historical Society for their great support for the tour and to the boat captains Jerry and Mari, Randy and Cindy, Steve and Jane, and Bill and Jane who donated their time and boats to make this tour so special.