<b>Tennessee River and Moccasin Bend</b>:
You are now looking north.
Here the Tennessee River makes a sweeping, clockwise loop around Moccasin Bend. In 1863, vital supplies were brought to the besieged Federals in Chattanooga across the "neck" of Moccasin Bend, using pontoon bridges at the two river crossings.
<b>The Cracker Line:</b>
Union forces opened a supply line into the besieged city of Chattanooga in late October 1863. Known as the "Cracker Line," it brought the weary Federals ammunition and food, including the soldiers' staple -- "hardtack" crackers.
The newly appointed Union commander, Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, prepared to fight as reinforcements arrived. Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker's detachment arrived in early October, and Maj. Gen. William T. Sherman's in mid-November.
In the face of this Union build-up, Gen. Braxton Bragg, commander of the Confederate army, committed a costly error. He sent a portion of his army off to attack Union troops at Knoxville, thereby weakening his grip on Chattanooga.