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Army of the Cumberland

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Title: Army of the Cumberland  
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Subject: William Rosecrans, George Henry Thomas, Battle of Stones River, Braxton Bragg, Oliver O. Howard
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Army of the Cumberland

Army of the Cumberland
Battle of Missionary Ridge
Active October 24, 1862 – August 1, 1865
Country  United States of America
Branch United States Army
Type Field army

American Civil War

William S. Rosecrans
George H. Thomas

The Army of the Cumberland was one of the principal Union armies in the Western Theater during the American Civil War. It was originally known as the Army of the Ohio.


  • History 1
  • Command history 2
  • Orders of battle 3
  • References 4
  • Further reading 5
  • External links 6


The origin of the Army of the Cumberland dates back to the creation of the Thomas L. Crittenden (Left).

General Orders No. 168 was the order passed by the Union Army on October 24, 1862, that called for the commissioning the XIV Corps into the Army of the Cumberland.

The army's first significant combat under the Cumberland name was at the George H. Thomas on October 28, 1863.

In the Battles for Chattanooga, Grant had been leery of using the Army of the Cumberland in the main fighting, fearing their morale to be too low after the defeat at Chickamauga. Instead, he used the veterans from the Army of the Potomac, proud of their recent victory at the Battle of Gettysburg, to take Lookout Mountain and planned to use the troops from the Army of the Tennessee, also recent victors at the Siege of Vicksburg, to attack the Confederate right flank on Missionary Ridge. The Army of the Cumberland was given the minor task of seizing the rifle pits at the base of Missionary Ridge. However, once they achieved their objective, four divisions (one led by Philip H. Sheridan) stormed up the ridge and routed the Confederate center. When Grant angrily asked who had ordered those troops up the ridge both Thomas and Gordon Granger, a corps commander in the army, responded they did not know. Granger then replied, "Once those boys get started, all hell can't stop 'em."

After Grant's victory at Chattanooga earned him promotion to general-in-chief of the U.S. Army, Maj. Gen. Grand Review of the Armies in Washington, D.C., before President Andrew Johnson in 1865.

Command history

Commander From To Major Battles and Campaigns
Major General William S. Rosecrans October 24, 1862 October 19, 1863 Stones River, Tullahoma Campaign, Chickamauga
Major General George H. Thomas October 19, 1863 August 1, 1865 Chattanooga, Atlanta Campaign, Franklin, Nashville

Orders of battle


  • Eicher, John H., and David J. Eicher. Civil War High Commands. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2001. ISBN 0-8047-3641-3.
  • Organization of U.S. Forces in the Civil War

Further reading

  • Daniel, Larry J. Days of Glory: The Army of the Cumberland, 1861–1865. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 2004. ISBN 978-0-8071-3191-6.
  • Hunt, Robert Eno. The Good Men Who Won the War: Army of the Cumberland Veterans and Emancipation Memory. Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, 2010. ISBN 978-0-8173-1688-4.
  • Prokopowicz, Gerald J. All for the Regiment: The Army of the Ohio, 1861–1862. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2001. ISBN 0-8078-2626-X.
  • Van Horne, Thomas B. The Army of the Cumberland: Its Organizations, Campaigns, and Battles. New York: Smithmark Publishers, 1996. ISBN 0-8317-5621-7. First published 1885 by Robert Clarke & Co.
  • Cist, Henry M. "The Army of the Cumberland" Edison, NY, Castle Books, ISBN 0-7858-1579-1. First Published 1882, Cist, a general in the army, is considered the definitive work on the Army of the Cumberland.

External links

  • Rosecrans' campaign with the Fourteenth Army Corps, or the Army of the Cumberland: a narrative of personal observations, with an appendix consisting of official reports of the Battle of Stone River (1863) on Internet Archive
  • Army Organization during the Civil War
  • Annals of the Army of the Cumberland: comprising biographies, descriptions of departments, accounts of expeditions, skirmishes, and battles, also its police record of spies, smugglers and prominent rebel emissaries : together with anecdotes, incidents, poetry, reminiscences, etc. and official reports of the battle of Stone River (1863) on Internet Archive
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