August 7th, 1864

August 7th, 1864:

On the morning of the seventh, the Federals again began to advance on the entrenched Confederates south of Utoy Creek.  They encountered no resistance and found the Confederate works empty.  Bate’s Division was withdrawn from the lines overnight and took their place in the line of defensive works, that stretched from the defensive perimeter around Atlanta, to the southwest in order to protect the railroads in East Point.   Bate’s takes his place between Clayton’s Division on his right (north) and Clerburne’s Division to his left (south).

Sherman, who is displeased with the failure of the movement toward East Point, decides to lay siege to Atlanta and will do his best to run the Confederates out of the city.  He begins to shell the city and considers the city itself as a military target even though there are still civilians within the city.  Many have evacuated, but several thousand have no where to go or have decided to wait it out.

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During the night of August the 6th, Bate(CS), withdrew his Division back to the original lines that had been established to block the Federal movement on East Point.  Bate was aligned with Clayton’s Division(CS) on his right and Cleburne’s Division(CS) on his left.  Here, along this low ridge split by Connally Road, was the far left of the Confederate line manned by elements of Cleburne’s Division(CS).  This ridge line overlooks one of the many forks on the southern side of Utoy Creek.
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Remains of a Confederate trench lie beneath these fallen trees in the woods of Greenwood Cemetery.  As Bate(CS) retired back to the original lines, Clayton’s Division9CS) was here on his right with his lines moving north and east back to Atlanta’s inner defenses.
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English Ivy covers part of the Confederate works that remain in John A. White Park.  These works were staffed by Clayton’s Division(CS).

The Battle of Utoy Creek day 2

August 6th, 1864:  The Battle of Utoy Creek

This morning, Sherman has accepted the resignation of Palmer, who will be on a train back to Chattanooga by the afternoon, and  the Federals had formed up their lines and everyone was in place to attempt an advance across Utoy Creek towards the railroad in East Point.  With Palmer’s resignation, Robert W. Johnson, a division commander within the XIV Corps, was appointed Commander of the XIV Corps and placed under the command of Schofield.  Displeased with the performance of the XIV Corps on the previous day, Schofield had moved his XXIII Corps to the right of the XIV Corps.  The XXIII Corps is now the Federal right flank and the XIV Corps is the left flank with Logan’s XV Corps in support to their left.  Palmer’s Corp was fanned out in an arch following the current Beecher Road south to Benjamin E. Mays and making a slight turn to the west, just north of Cascade Road.  Palmer’s right ended near Willis Mill Road.  Schofield’s left was adjacent to Palmer’s right with Cox’s Division along Cascade Road and stretching out west.  Hascall’s Division of Schofield’s Corps turn south making a 90 degree turn to the east and was facing the end of the Confederate line at the Confederate left flank.  Just west of Cascade Springs Nature Preserve.

The battle began when Cox’s Division moved south and Hascall’s Division moved east to press the Confederate flank.  The 11th Kentucky Regiment (Federal) of Cox’s Division was at the front of the advancing line and made first contact with the 4th Kentucky (CS), who were posted as skirmishers in front the famed Kentucky Orphan Brigade.  This action happened in the area of the waterfall in what is now Cascade Springs Nature Preserve.  Cox’s attack was repulsed and he suffered a severe loss.  He reformed for another attempt, but was repulsed a second time after which he withdrew from the assault.  Hascall was hindered by the South Fork of Utoy Creek and made minimal gains in his assault.  He did reach the rear of an artillery battery, which withdrew to the east to another position on high ground from which they still had a commanding view.

The XIV Corps, now commanded by Johnson, has sat idle most of the day and did not make an attempt to attack until late afternoon and he only attacked with one division.  He gained no headway and retired before anything larger than a skirmish developed.

The Confederate left flank was manned by Bate’s Division along a ridge line just south of Sandtown Road (Cascade Road).  S. D. Lee’s Division connected to Bate’s right at the Sandtown Road east of what is now Beecher road.  Bate’s left flank was open and vulnerable to attack and on the night of the 6th, Hood ordered Bate’s Division to withdraw from the area back to the Confederate main defensive line.

The Federal assault cost them approximately 800 lives and numerous wounded, while the Confederates lost only 18 soldiers while defending their heavily entrenched and fortified lines.

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Remnants of Federal earthworks manned by Cox’s Division of Schofield’s 23rd Corps(US).  This was near the far left of Cox’s Division as well as the left of the 23rd Corps before it abutted the right of the 14th Corps(US) commanded by Johnson.  Byrd’s Brigade of Cox’s Division held this area.
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Utoy Creek at the bike path inside Lionel Hampton – Beecher Hills Park.  When Cox’s Division(US) advanced on Bate’s Division(CS), which held the ridge just south of the Sandtown Road (Cascade Road), they crossed in this area.  The earthworks the stepped off from were in the previous image and are located a few hundred yards north (right of frame) of the creek on the ridge.
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Utoy Creek at Peyton Road.  The right of Cox’s Division(US) crossed the creek in this area as they advanced on the Bate’s Division(CS) which held the Confederate left flank.
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Hascall’s Division of Schofield’s 23rd Corps(US) advanced south and then made a 90 degree to the east to attack the end of the Confederate left flank which was exposed and vulnerable.  Hascall’s Division was greatly hampered by the thickets of woods and underbrush on the South Fork of Utoy Creek.  Hascall eventually reached the Confederate line with minimal affect, but did cause an artillery battery to withdraw to another position.
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A small water fall inside Cascade Springs Nature Preserve.  It was in this area that the first contact of the Battle of Utoy Creek happened.  The skirmishers of the Federal 11th Kentucky Reg.(US) engaged the the pickets of the 4th Kentucky Reg.(CS) of the famed Confederate Kentucky Orphan Brigade commanded by General Joseph Lewis.  There are several accounts in diaries or letters of soldiers bathing in the creek the day before the battle.
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A Confederate artillery battery inside the Cascade Springs Nature Preserve.  The battery here was commanded by Capt. Houston King and was named the Missouri Horse Artillery Battery.   As Hascall’s Division advanced across the South Fork of Utoy Creek, he forced the battery to withdraw to another position that was more defensible. 
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Confederate earthworks inside the Cascade Springs Nature Preserve.  Lewis’s Kentucky Orphan Brigade of Bate’s Division(CS) held the position on the left end of the Confederate line.  As Cox’s Division(US) attacked the strong entrenchments of the Confederates, they were quickly repulsed.  Cox’s formed his lines for another assault which was subsequently repulsed with heavy losses.  After the second attempt failed to take the Confederate line, Cox withdrew his Division back to their starting point.
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A dead tree across the top of Confederate earthworks gives scale to their current depth.  These works work manned by Lewis’s Kentucky Orphan Brigade of Bate’s Division (CS).  Realizing the fault of the exposed left flank, General Hood ordered the Corps commander, General S. D. Lee to withdraw Bate’s Division back to the main Confederate line on the night of the 6th.
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Smith’s Brigade of Bate’s Division held this ridge line here south of the Sandtown Road, now Cascade Road.  This view is looking from Cascade Rd. (formerly Sandtown Rd.) to the south and up at the ridge line on Woodland Terrace.  Byrd’s Brigade of Cox’s Division(US), which constituted the left of Cox’s Division, attacked Smith’s Division along this ridge line where they met stiff resistance from the heavily fortified Confederate positions.
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Looking west along Cascade Road, formerly Sandtown Road.  The Confederates of Bate’s Division(CS) held the high ground south(left) of the road and in this area Byrd’s Brigade of Cox’s Division(US) crossed the road to attack Smith’s Brigade of Cox’s Division(CS).
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Known as Cascade Mansion, this home, now a special events facility, was built by Dr. William Poole, who later became a Confederate surgeon in the 57th Ga. Infantry.  Construction began in 1860, but due to the war, it was not completed until 1870.  During the Battle of Utoy Creek, General Bate’s(CS) used the partially finished home as his headquarters while commanding his troops.  After the Battle of Utoy Creek and during the “Siege” of Atlanta, it was used a Union hospital.
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Utoy Church, now known as Temple of Christ Pentecostal Church, is one of the oldest Churches in Fulton Co. as is its cemetery.  It was established in 1824 and moved to this location in 1828.  Heavily remodeled and with multiple additions, it still stands where it did in 1828.  During the battles that took place around Atlanta, it was used as a hospital.  During the Battle of Utoy Creek it was again used as a hospital and the Confederate defensive lines crossed the property in the north west corner.
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When I visited the Church and Cemetery on the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Utoy Creek, I found that someone had placed new Confederate flags at the headstones of the unknown soldiers that had died here during the battle.  Being such an old cemetery, there are grave markers indicating the graves of soldiers who served as far back as the Revolutionary war and the Spanish American War.
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While I am sure there were other Jewish Confederate soldiers, this was the only Jewish Confederate grave stone that I came across in my nearly year long journey following Sherman through Georgia.  I have been in a great many cemeteries along the way and seen many Confederate graves, but this was a first.
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Greenwood Cemetery.  The Confederate lines that extended south west of the Atlanta’s inner defensive line, crossed through the high ground and hills inside what is now Greenwood Cemetery.  Clayton’s Division of General S. D. Lee’s Corps(CS) was positioned along this line.  They were located to the right of Bate’s Division and were engaged in skirmishing with the Federal 14th Corps(US) Commanded by General Johnson.
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Just inside the wood line of the western part of Greenwood Cemetery you can find remnants of the Confederate earthworks that were manned by Clayton’s Division(CS) and who repulsed a halfhearted attack by the Federal 14th Corps(US).  My ancestors who were in the 42nd Ga. in Stovall’s Brigade were positioned in this area.
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 Remains of the Confederate line the extended south and west from Atlanta’s inner defensive line to protect the railroad in East Point.  These works are located in a wooded part of John A. White Park.

The Battle of Utoy Creek

August 5th, 1864:

The conflict between General’s Sherman, Palmer and Schofield continued throughout the day.  Palmer sent multiple letters arguing back and forth with Sherman.  Palmer’s final letter said “I will call upon you tomorrow morning and present a formal application to be relieved.”  While they bickered back and forth, Federal units were still trying to get in line for the move toward East Point.  For the remainder of the day Palmer agrees to relay orders from Schofield to his XIV Corps.  Baird’s Division advances south toward Utoy Creek and encounter the Confederate skirmishers.  They take about 140 prisoners.  They then turn towards the east and encounter an artillery barrage.  They decide not to advance and assault the Confederate works as they assume they will be repulsed.  Davis brings his division up along side Baird’s and comes to halt as well.  Schofield is not happy about the assault coming to a halt.  He orders Johnson’s Division of Palmer’s Corps to swing around the right and attack the Confederate left flank.  Johnson waits until early evening to begin his movement, which he calls a “reconnaissance”.  He moved a short distance and then calls it off since it is too late in the day to do much good.  He falls back to the rear of Davis.  Schofield and Sherman are both displeased with the performance of Palmer’s XIV Corps.  Palmer will resign in the morning and for a time Johnson will command the XIV Corps.

During the night of the 5th, Hood orders the defensive lines extended further south and west to protect the railroad in East Point.  The line extended about 1.25 miles from the existing defensive lines, down a ridge line the paralleled the Sandtown Road (Cascade Road), and overlooked the North Fork of Utoy Creek.  The far left of the line ended in the area of the current Cascade Springs Nature Preserve.

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Looking north along the bike path in Lionel Hampton – Beecher Hills Park.  Cox’s Division of Schofield’s 23rd Corps (US) established their lines on the ridge line at the top of the hill in the distance.
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Portion of Federal earthworks manned by Cox’s Division.
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A fairly long stretch of earthworks occupied by Cox’s Division of Schofield’s 23rd Corps (US) inside Lionel Hampton – Beecher Hills Park.
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A dead tree lies across the remnants of Federal earthworks of Cox’s Division.  The log helps demonstrate the depth of the remaining earthworks that are tucked away in the forest of Lionel Hampton – Beecher Hills Park.

The Battle of Atlanta

July 22, 1864

After an arduous night march of 16 miles, Hardee’s Corps was getting into position on the Federal left flank.  The attack that was supposed to begin at dawn, but was delayed due to the distance of the night march and then further delayed when Walker’s and Bate’s Divisions had to work around the swampy terrain at Terry’s Mill Pond.  Just after 12:00pm, Hardee ordered Walker and Bate to attack the Federal left flank.  Bate’s Division was on the Confederate right, east of Sugar Creek and Walker’s Division was on the west side of Sugar Creek.  As Walker’s Division made their way past the mill pond, Walker moved to the front of his lines to see what lay ahead of his column.  As he raised his field glasses, a round from a Federal sharpshooter killed him instantly.  After the disarray and confusion that followed, Brig. Gen. H. W. Mercer assumed command of the Division and carried out the attack.  Walker fell near the intersection of Glenwood Ave. and Wilkinson Dr.  A monument dedicated to his memory stands there today.

The Federals that Walker and Bate were attacking were elements of the 2nd and 4th Divisions of Dodge’s XVI Corps.  They were entrenched in the area of Memorial Drive and Clay Street.  With part of the line extending into what is now Alonzo Crim High School.  This was a tactically advantageous position on high ground overlooking Sugar Creek valley.  They were also supported by several artillery batteries.

Cleburne’s and Maney’s Divisions had moved up Flat Shoals Road and were heading toward the left flank of the Federals that were entrenched along Flat Shoals in the area between Glenwood and the intersection of I-20 and Moreland (Bald Hill, aka Leggett’s Hill).  They attacked the left flank of Blair’s XVII Corps that was held by Smith’s 4th Division.  Cleburne’s attack was fast and furious.  His troops drove the Federals back to the north to Bald Hill and in the process they captured eight cannons and the entire 16th Iowa Infantry Regiment.

During this time, General McPherson was riding toward Dodge’s Corps to asses the situation and was traveling on a ridge line (McPherson Ave.) trying to find a way to close the gap between Logan and Blair.  The Confederates were flooding into the gap in McPherson’s lines, and as McPherson searched for a way to close the gap, he was shot and killed by the attacking Confederates.  One of McPherson’s aides was with him, and when the shots rang out, his horse took off and slammed into a tree, thus breaking his watch at 2:02pm, the time of McPherson’s death.

Late in the afternoon, Hood, who was observing the battle from a house adjacent to what is now Oakland Cemetery, ordered his former Corps, now commanded by Cheatham, to attack the Federal front.  Cheatham’s Corps left their works and moved east toward the Federal line.  The right of Cheatham’s Corps was attacking Bald Hill from the west and Maney’s Division of Hardee’s Corps was attacking from the south west.  Even with their combined effort, they were unable to push the Federals off of Bald Hill.  On Cheatham’s left, Clayton and Brown’s divisions were more successful.  Manigault’s Brigade of Brown’s Division, used the cover of a deep railroad cut in the area of the current Inman Park Marta Station and the CSX railroad.  They came under artillery fire, but were able to out flank the battery and capture the guns.  This action broke the Federal line and Manigault wheeled to the left and began to “roll up” the Federal line.  He captured 8 cannons in the process, four of which were 20 pounder Parrott rifles.  Stovall’s Brigade, which was aligned to the left of Manigault, was attacking the Degress Battery (located off of Battery Place) from the front when Manigault hit the flank.  As the line broke, soldiers from both Brigades stormed the works and captured the battery.  The 42nd Ga. Volunteers, who were part of Stovall’s Brigade, took part in this assault.

General Sherman, who was observing the battle from the Augustus Hurt house at the present day Carter Library, witnessed the Confederate assault that broke part of the lines of Logan’s XV Corps.  He personally directed artillery fire from five concentrated batteries, toward the attacking Confederates.  He had the artillery rounds falling to their front to prevent them from moving forward and attacking, as well as toward their rear to prevent reinforcements from supporting the assault.  This artillery fire and a Federal counter attack of eight Brigades, pushed the Confederates back to their works and restored the Federal line.

Hood had also dispatched General Wheeler and his Cavalry to Decatur to attack McPherson’s wagon train.  Wheeler found several regiments of Federal infantry posted south of Decatur.  At 1:00pm, Wheeler dismounted two of his divisions and assaulted the Federals.  He pushed them north across what is now Agnes Scott College and then across the railroad tracks to the Decatur Square.  The wagon train was detoured from Decatur after Wheeler started his assault.  Wheeler pushed the Federals through the square and through the old city cemetery.  The Federals then formed a new line along what is now North Decatur Road.  Before Wheeler could attack the new Federal line, he was recalled back to Atlanta to support the attack on Bald Hill.

The battle was over by the time darkness had fallen, the Confederates had returned to their works and had suffered nearly twice the number of casualties as the Federals.  The Federals reformed their lines and will shortly begin the “Siege of Atlanta”.

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After receiving the order from General Hardee (CS) to attack, General W. Walker commanding his division of Hardee’s Corps rode to the front of his lines to observe the terrain and deploy his troops in Sugar Creek Valley.  He was shot off his horse and killed by a Federal picket.  General Mercer assumed command and continued the attack.
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Sugar Creek Valley:  Bate’s Division of Hardee’s Corps(CS) was deployed on this, the eastern side of Sugar Creek and Walker’s Division, now commanded by Mercer, was deployed to the western side of the creek.  They advanced up the low valley to assault the federal lines along present day Memorial Drive and Clay Street.  The Dekalb Memorial Park now occupies what is left of Sugar Creek Valley.
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Alanzo A. Crim High School now occupies the spot where the Blodgett’s Missouri Battery H was positioned in the Federal lines that were occupied by Federal troops from Rice’s and Mersey’s Brigades of Sweeny’s Division(US).  Rice’s Brigade was facing east and engaged with Bate’s Division as they moved up the east side of Sugar Creek and Mersey’s Brigade was facing south and bearing the brunt of the assault from Walkers Division(commanded by Mercer).
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The Federal lines of Rice’s Brigade were positioned on this high ground here at Memorial Drive near Clay street.  They were facing east, toward the camera position, and were engaged with Bate’s Division (CS)
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While Bate’s and Walker’s Division’s constituted the right flank of Hardee’s assault on the Federal lines, Maney’s and Cleburne’s Divisions were the left flank.  Maney’s Brigades advanced on the Federal lines and moved through what is now Brownwood Park, to assault the Federals on the high ground just north of Flat Shoals Rd.
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Cleburne’s Division was advancing on the west side of Flat Shoals Rd, to the right of Maney’s Division, when they encountered the far left of the Federal flank.  Cleburne’s men were able to turn the Federal left, General Smith Division, and then were able to assault the rear of the Federal lines to their west.  In the process of that assault, Cleburne’s troops were able to capture eight artillery pieces that belonged to the 2nd Illinois and 2nd U.S. Artillery.
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With an attack on two sides, General Smith(US), fell back with his Division under heavy fire.  They made a retrograde movement to form a line on the east flank of Bald Hill, also called Leggett’s Hill.  Leggett’s hill once occupied the intersection of I-20 and Moreland Ave.  The fighting here was fierce, with the Leggett’s Division and what was left of Smith Division, taking fire on their position from their front, their left flank, and their rear.
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In the late morning, just before the noon start to the Confederate attack, General McPherson, along with Generals Logan and Blair, as well as their staff officer, stopped for lunch.  They stopped in a grove of oak trees on the south side of the rail road near the location of Whitfoord Ave and La France.  After finishing their meal and sending a dispatch to General Dodge to destroy the rail road, the generals heard the first shots of the Confederate assault.  Logan and Blair rode off to command their respective corps and McPherson and his staff road towards the sound of the gun fight.  While moving along what is now McPherson Ave., General McPherson was shot and killed by Confederates of Cleburne’s Division as they exploited a gap in the Federal lines.  This image is of reenactors at a memorial service on the 150th anniversary of the Generals death.
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Several hours after the main Confederate assault by Hardee’s Corps(CS), General Hood(CS), threw Cheatham’s Corps into the attack and thus extended the Confederate line of attack further north and across the railroad.  Here in this images is Edgewood Ave. Clayton’s Brigade of Cheatham’s Corps(CS) moved east through here to attack the Federal positions at the Troup Hurt House. 
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Dekalb Ave. at the Inman Park Marta Station.  Here, Manigault’s and Sharp’s Brigades of Brown’s Division Cheatham’s Corps (CS) moved east on the north side of the rail road tracks to assault the Federal lines.  Sharp’s Brigade was able to exploit the cover provided by the deep railroad, where the Marta station now sits, and push through the small gap in the Federal lines where he wheeled to the right to attack the Federal flank south of the railroad and capture 2 artillery pieces of Battery A 1st Illinois Artillery.  Manigault wheeled to the left and captured the 4 remaining guns of the battery and continued to move north up the Federal line.  The Federal line broke and Manigault along with Stovall’s Brigade were able to continue the assault.
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This old stone church, now a private residence, sits on the site of the Troup Hurt House.  This site was a land mark on the battlefield and the site of the Federal lines as well as the four 20 pounder Parrott rifles of the Degress Battery H, 1st Illinois Artillery.  Manigault’s along with Stovall’s Brigade, were able to break the Federal lines here and capture the Degress Battery.  They were able to hold the position for some time before they too were routed out by a Federal counter attack.
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General Hood(CS) was the commander of the Confederate Army of Tennessee and upon ordering Cheatham’s Corps to attack the Federal lines, he took up a position on the second floor of the Williams home, to watch the battle unfold.  The Williams home once stood in this area of what is now Oakland Cemetery.
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The Carter Center now sits where the Augustus Hurt House once stood.  This was the location of General Sherman’s headquarters during the Battle of Atlanta.  Generals Howard and Schofield also made their command post here as well.  After his death, General McPherson’s body was brought here before being send back to Ohio for burial.  From here, Sherman ordered a counter attack on the Confederates and personally directed artillery fire against the Confederates in the area of the Troup Hurt House.
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As part of the Federal counter attack, Logan’s 15th Corps(US), moved west astride the railroad.  Here, just on the south side of the railroad at Moreland Ave. and Caroline st., Lightburn’s Brigade advanced west toward the area of the Troup Hurt House.
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Dekalb Ave. at Moreland Ave.  Upon establishing their lines in the area of the Troup Hurt House and the railroad cut just west of this location, the Federals set up a signal station in a large pine tree in this location.  After the Federal lines broke, the station was abandoned and when the Federal counter attack was successful, the station was put back in to use. 

July 18th, 1864

July 18, 1864:

General Joseph E. Johnston is officially relieved of command of the Confederate Army of Tennessee.  President Davis promote Lt. General John. B. Hood to be the new commander of the Army of Tennessee.  Davis advised Johnston the he was relieved of command due to his inability to stop the Federals from reaching Atlanta and that he did not have confidence that he could prevent the Federals from capturing Atlanta and destroying the Army of Tennessee.  Johnston was very well liked among his troops and many were in disbelief.

This change in command has come at a crucial time as the Federals have just crossed the Chattahoochee River.  The Army of the Cumberland crosses at Pace’s Ferry and Power’s Ferry and are advancing toward Peachtree Creek.  General McPherson’s Army of the Tennessee, has crossed the river at Roswell and has been moving south through Dunwoody toward the Augusta Railroad line near Decatur.  They reach it on the 18th and destroy about four miles of it in between Stone Mountain and Decatur, in an attempt to disrupt the supplies, and possibly reinforcements, coming from the east. McPherson then turns west and moves towards Decatur.

Wheelers Cavalry had been skirmishing with the Federals approaching Peachtree Creek for several days, but today they burn the bridges over Peachtree Creek at Moore’s Mill, Howell’s Mill, and on Ridgewood Road.  They then move south east to intercept McPherson’s Army of the Tennessee near Decatur.

The pieces are nearly in place for the first of two major battles to happen on the outskirts of Atlanta.  Soon the two armies will clash in the Battle of Peachtree Creek and then two days later at the Battle of Atlanta.

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Peachtree Creek, once a strategic obstacle for the advancing Federals, now sits nestled between neighborhoods and park.
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Moore’s Mill at Peachtree Creek.  The original wooden bridge would have been located to the left of the current bridge.  After encountering the advancement of Federal troops, Confederate skirmishers were forced across the bridge and burned it in an attempt to stall the Federal advance.
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Another bridge across Peachtree Creek, here at Howell’s Mill, was burned by Confederate skirmishers in an attempt to slow down the Federals as they moved on Atlanta.
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As General McPherson’s men moved from Roswell they passed through Dunwoody where they split their columns to take advantage of multiple roads in an effort to move faster.  Here along Johnson Ferry Road at Nancy Creek, Dodge’s 16th Corps, on the right of McPherson’s Army of the Tennessee(US), linked up with General Cox’s 3nd Division of the 23rd Corps, Army of the Ohio.  They camped here along the creek for a night before proceeding to Decatur. 
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Part of Dodge’s 16th Corps camped here at Ashford Dunwoody Road and Nancy Creek.  Now a large athletic complex covers their camp.
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Logan’s 15th Corps and Blair’s 17th Corps moved down what is now N. Shallowford Road. They camped along Nancy Creek in the area of I-285 and N. Shallowford Road.
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Nestled in a small copse of trees off of Peachtree Road in Brookhaven, the Solomon Goodwin House is the oldest structure in Dekalb County and also the oldest inside the “Perimeter (I-285).  The oldest portion was built in 1831 and expanded to it’s current size in the 1840’s.  The home was a landmark on maps at the time and both Hascall’s and Cox’s Divisions of the 23rd Corps, Army of the Ohio, passed by here on their movement south.  There are still dents in the mantel from rifle butts. 
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Now the clubhouse for the Peachtree Golf Club, the Samuel House Plantation was a landmark for the advancing Federals.  Cox’s 3rd Division of the General Schofield’s 23rd Corps, Army of the Ohio, camped here on the plantation grounds.  General Schofield, along with General Sherman were accompanying the Division, made their Headquarters here.
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Browning’s Court House was another area landmark on McPherson’s route to Decatur.  Originally located at the intersection of Lavista Road and Fellowship Road, it has been moved to property owned by the county in order to preserve the structure.  Logan’s 15th Corps moved to this point to support elements of Garrard’s Cavalry as them moved to destroy the railroad tracks in nearby Stone Mountain.
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The railroad in Decatur looking east towards Stone Mountain and on to Augusta.  This was McPherson’s goal.  He was charged with destroying the railroad in order to prevent supplies and reinforcements from reaching Atlanta from the east. 

The Battle of Kolb’s Farm

June 22, 1864:  The Battle of Kolb’s Farm

On orders from General Sherman, General Schofield’s Army of the Ohio, was advancing down the Powder Springs Road in the direction of Marietta.  Schofield was attempting to go around the left end of the Confederate flank.  General Johnston recognized this threat and on the 21st he sent Hood from his right flank to the left in an attempt to neutralize the threat.  In the late afternoon of the 22nd, Hood’s Corps met Schofied’s Army of the Ohio near the Kolb Farm.  Hood initiated an attack without permission from his commander, General Johnston, and he did not bother to do any reconnaissance of the terrain or the force he was engaging.  He unknowingly ordered an advance on a superior enemy force that was entrenched on the high ground.  After suffering about 1000 casualties, Hood retreated and dug in.  He was successful in stopping Schofield from turning the Confederate left flank, but was foolish in making his assault.

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The Kolb Farm House.  Owned by the Park Service, this restored period home is sometimes used as living quarters for park rangers.  It was once a major landmark on the battlefield with its namesake. 
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 Looking west down the Powder Springs Road a period road still in use today.  The Kolb House is across the intersection in the trees.  The Federals and Confederates were positioned in lines that ran roughly North to South on both sides of the road.  The Federals would have been attacking for the distance and moving toward the camera position.  The Confederates would have been moving from the east (behind the camera) toward the Federals in the west.
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Much of the landscape has changed in the last 150 years, but during the Battle of Kolb’s Farm this area would have been part of the Federal line and saw a significant amount of action.
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A subdivision now sits where soldiers once stood.  The Federal lines were on the hillside to the left of the frame.
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Cheatham Hill Road.  The line of battle roughly follows this road and the Confederates attacked across the road from the right side of the frame towards the left.
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The McAdoo House, which sits behind the Kroger in a previous image, is one of the few remaining homes that survived the Battle of Kolb’s Farm and the Battle of Kennesaw Mountain.  It sits atop a low ridge the Federals established their line along during the Battle of Kolb’s Farm.
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 The Cheney House is a period home that survived the Civil War and is now home to apartments for “Senior Living”.  General Schofield made his headquarters here during the Battle of Kolb’s Farm and throughout the remaining operations around Kennesaw Mountain.  He occupied the home June 22 – June 30 and was visited here by General Sherman on the 23rd and the 25th of June. 

150 Years Ago Today: Siege of Atlanta

August 1st – August 27th, 1864:
     After the Battle of Atlanta on July 22nd, the Federal Artillery began to shell the city of Atlanta, sometimes it was light and random and at other times there were “duels” with the Confederate Artillery in the inner defensive perimeter. 
     On the first of August, Sherman learned of the failure of the Cavalry raid to destroy the railroads south of the city.  He then sent the following order to General Schofield “You may fire ten to fifteen shots from every gun you have in position into Atlanta that will reach any of its houses.  Fire slowly and with deliberation between 4:00pm and dark.  Thomas and Howard will do the same.” (O.R. 38, V, 324, Sherman to Schofield).
     On the 7th of August, after the failure of the Federal forces to take the railroad junction at East Point.  Sherman request two more large siege guns to be sent from Chattanooga by rail.  These guns shoot a 4.5 inch diameter round weighing 30 pounds.
     As the shelling of the city became more intense, more and more damage was done.  The Federal artillery was using the church spires of town as land marks for sighting their guns.  Homes and businesses alike were damaged or destroyed.  Sherman was targeting the city itself and wanting nothing more than to break Hood’s resolve and force the Confederate army from their stronghold.  At one point, Hood sent a message to Sherman requesting that he stop shelling the noncombatants in the city and pointed out that the cities defensive line was a full mile outside the city.  Sherman replied that Atlanta was a military target and an arsenal.  Sherman continued the siege unchanged.  The first civilian casualty of the siege was small girl in the area of Peachtree St. and Ellis Street.  Solomon Luckie, a free black man who owned a barber shop in town, was killed by a shell near what is now the Five Points Marta Station.  There is an original gas lamp on the corner at the marta station and local legend says that the hole in the base was caused by the same shell that killed Solomon Luckie.