Tour Talk: Civil War 101: Chickamauga

Norman Dasinger, Jr.,  is a BGES tour-de-force. He frequently contributes to the BGES Dispatch, writing about little-known and intriguing aspects of the Civil War. He’s also a popular BGES tour leader, known for his in-depth knowledge and passion for history. The Civil War 101 concept is his brainchild, and he is a founding sponsor of the series. In July, he brings to us CW 101: Chickamauga. In just two days and an evening, he presents the essence of this hard-fought battle for Civil War buffs and novices alike. It’s designed and priced for you to share this opportunity with your son or daughter or grandchild or niece. We caught up with Norm to ask him about this exciting new opportunity.

Norm Dasinger, Jr.

BGES Blog: Give us the 3-sentence overview of your tour.

ND: It is designed for the novice historian, someone who has just become interested in the Civil War or someone that wants to learn more about this Civil War battle but does not have a deep knowledge of the war or this battle. Therefore, this is a perfect opportunity to introduce students/younger people to the Civil War.

BGES Blog: What is the importance of sharing this aspect of the Civil War with younger novices? Why Chickamauga?

ND: In order to perpetuate the knowledge of the causes, warriors, and deep heritage of the Civil War, the information must be passed on to others, specifically younger Americans. Chickamauga is a major Civil War battle. It is of the same size at Gettysburg. It demands our attention.

BGES Blog: What are some tour highlights?

ND: This is the overview. We will visit all the major sites on the Chickamauga battlefield on Day 1. On Day 2, we will add sites in and around the city of Chattanooga. Chickamauga is a complex battle and one can easily get lost and discouraged by that complexity. I will help make the complex simple. Chattanooga from a military perspective is much easier. But, the geography of the city must be accounted for in order to put all the pieces of this campaign into a proper perspective.

BGES Blog: What are you most excited about sharing with your tour participants?

ND: The tour stops. In order to initiate that interest in history, our site visits will be varied and cover everything from the Trail of Tears to WW II.

BGES Blog: What does this tour offer that others don’t? Why would tour participants join this tour?

ND: In order to understand the battle and follow up at Chattanooga, a person needs help understanding the maneuvers and locating the modern places where these events happened. In other words, you need a tutor. I am the tutor.

BGES Blog: Why did you decide to lead this particular tour? Do you have a personal stake in it?

ND: I want to get young people and their families interested in American History. I am offering my expertise at this battle site in order to energize others into learning more about history.

BGES Blog: What do you hope your tour adds to the overall understanding of the Civil War, and history in general?

ND: Passing on the spark of interest that history provides.

BGES Blog: What do you hope your tour participants take away from the weekend?

ND: Excitement for learning!

BGES Blog: Any final words?

ND: These two days of touring are worth your time and worth the time of your young family members. Chickamauga is a beautifully wooded battlefield and the landscape around Chattanooga is just breathtaking. If you want to get someone interested in history, by having them see the land and listen to the stories, this is the place to do it.

West Chickamauga Creek | National Park Service