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Visiting Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park near Atlanta

Tonya Prater, Owner

Visiting Kennesaw National Battlefield Park near Atlanta
In the fall, I joined my husband and oldest son on a work trip to Atlanta. This wasn’t our first trip to the mega-city. We’ve visited many times before. And honestly, it was not love at first site. After the initial trip, I swore I’d never visit Atlanta again. But we did.


And over.

And over.

In the process, Atlanta grew on me. So when I had the opportunity to tag along on my husband’s most recent trip to the south, I didn’t hesitate. There were several things that I wanted to do- tour the Oakland Cemetery or Atlanta History Center. Eat at the Varsity, or hike at the Chattahoochee Nature Center. It didn’t happen. Instead we watched Big Hero 6 at the theater, ate ice cream at Brewster’s and hiked at the Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park.

I observed Kennesaw to be a popular green space near Atlanta and according to the website, it is the most visited National Battlefield in the nation. Surprised? I was. Comprised of nearly 3,000 acres, this National Battlefield was once anything but peaceful. A stop along the Atlanta Campaign during the Civil War, opposing forces fought here from June 19, 1864 until July 2 of the same year.

Sunset at Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield                                                                             Atop Kennesaw Mountain

My family has visited the park at least four other times. Once, we tried to stop but we were pulling a trailer and the parking lot was full so we drove on.

My family has watched the short movie in the visitor center, hiked on several trails and followed part of the driving trail.

Tree on Kennesaw

We drove to the top of Kennesaw Mountain, avoiding the walkers and joggers on the way up the paved road to get a glimpse of Atlanta. The view is pretty impressive.

The view of Atlanta from atop Kennesaw Mountain Battlefield

On a clear day, Stone Mountain is visible in the distance. We had seen much of the park, but we’d never stopped at Cheatham Hill. It turned out, it was a real treasure.

Historic Earthworks at Cheatham Hill in the Kennesaw National Battlefield

Cheatham Hill is the site of one of the few memorials within the park. An easy trail led us to the monument.

The monument overlooks the field where the battle waged.

Overlooking the battlefield at Cheatham Hill

This was the site of the most intense fighting at Kennesaw and the first area to become part of Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park. Leading forces, Major General George Thomas, chose to make a frontal assault hoping to roll through the Confederate defensive line.

Veterans who had fought in the battle with the Colonel Dan McCook Brigade, who died in the battle, led the purchase of 60 acres of land. After the land was secured, money was raised to erect a monument to those who had participated. A leading contributor was the state of Illinois. On June 27, 1914, the memorial was dedicated as the Illinois Monument.  The earthworks were purchased at a later date.

The memorial at Cheatham Hill
When facing the monument, you’ll notice a small tunnel, dug by the Union troops in an effort to break through the Confederate battle line.

The front of the Illinois monument on Cheatham Hill in Kennesaw National Battlefield.

Unfortunately, we didn’t have time to explore anymore, as it was beginning to get dark as we made our way back along the short trail to the parking lot. Guess what I’ll explore next time I visit the Atlanta area?

Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park
Address: 900 Kennesaw Mountain Dr. Kennesaw, GA 30152
Phone: (770) 427-4686

Have you visited Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park? 


Monday 23rd of March 2015

What a great park, and I love the views from the top! It wouldn't be difficult to spend a day here wandering around soaking up the views and the history. Thanks for linking up this week! #TPThursday.


Sunday 29th of March 2015

You can see what draws us back time and again, right, Nancie? I love exploring near Atlanta. It's such a huge city, but it provides so many parks and places to get out and escape.

eileen at FamiliesGo!

Monday 23rd of March 2015

i'm happy my daughter is getting older and starting to appreciate nature and get a sense of history so we can visit places like this. it looks lovely.


Sunday 29th of March 2015

Kennesaw is a lovely park to explore.

Jackie Smith

Thursday 19th of March 2015

I love history when traveling and isn't it nice to find places like this where you can 'time travel' back into history?


Sunday 29th of March 2015

Jackie, I didn't think I liked history until my family began traveling and I realized how fascinating it could be. I wish school children could take more field trips, or invite more guest speakers to really make history come alive for the students.


Thursday 19th of March 2015

Interesting... a lot of history... Protection Status
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