Almost from the time of its incorporation in 1839, Chattanooga looked to tourism as a source for economic growth. Chattanooga's position as a rail junction and its promixity to higher elevations made it a natural destination point "as people from the lower South sought escape in the mountains to avoid humid summers and deadly epidemics" (Livingood 30). After the Civil War the city added its battlefields to its list of tourist attractions. Over 50,000 people attended the dedication of the Chattanooga Chickamauga National Military Park in 1895, and subsequent Civil War reunions formed the base of Chattanooga's growing convention business. By 1914 Chattanooga was regularly hosting the national conventions of groups such as the Southern Baptist Association, the International Conference of the Epworth League and, as mentioned in this FSC, the Shriners.