May 12th, 1864: Dalton, Ga. The move to Resaca begins

May 12th, 1864:  General Johnston begins to realize that General Sherman’s Objective is either Resaca or Calhoun.  Johnston begins the retrograde movement from Dalton, by ordering the wagon trains to start heading to Resaca.  He orders the infantry to move out after dark and has his Cavalry dismount and take their place.  The will then cover the retreat and protect the rear of the Confederate Army.

During the morning of the 12th, a large portion of the Union Army begin their flanking movement of Dalton and follow McPherson’s route to Snake Creek Gap.  Due to a thunderstorm and heavy rain the night before, the Union Army progresses slowly.  The roads are choked with wagons bogged down in the mud and infantry slogging through the quagmire.  This slows the Federals and allows the Confederate Army more time to reach Resaca and being digging in.  During the afternoon of the 12th, General Sherman arrives at Snake Creek Gap.  Upon meeting General McPherson, for the first time since his failure to take Resaca or destroy the railroad around Resaca and cut off the Confederate life line, he says “Well, Mac, you have missed the opportunity of a lifetime”.  An officer standing near by said these were spoken “not ungraciously”, but General McPherson realizes it is a deserved comment for his failure.
The Huff House.  This home served as Confederate General Joseph E. Johnston’s headquarters during his time in Dalton from the winter of 1863 until the middle of May, 1864.
Statue of General Joseph E. Johnston in downtown Dalton.
Hamilton House was the headquarters of Brig. General J.H. Lewis, commander of the famous Kentucky “Orphan Brigade”, during the winter of 1863 up until their with drawl towards Resaca in May of 1864
The Blunt House.  After the Confederate retreat from Dalton, Union forces occupied Dalton for the remainder of the war and this home was used as a hospital by Union forces for the duration. 

Author: Clint Brownlee

My name is Clint Brownlee and I am a Photographer in Woodstock, Georgia with over 20 years of photographic experience in many different aspects of photography. I have photographed everything from weddings, special events and portraits to published materials, but my passion has always been Fine Art and Nature Photography. I have had a several shows at the Mason Murer Fine Art Gallery in Atlanta, Georgia and The Roswell Visual Arts Center in Roswell, Georgia. I now sell through my website:

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