The Atlanta Campaign, a Virtual Tour

  

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While Hood’s army had suffered crippling setbacks at Peachtree Creek and the Battle of Atlanta and could no longer mount viable offensive operations, it was more than sufficient to man the massive fortifications surrounding Atlanta. Since Sherman’s investment of the city was not complete, Hood could hold out indefinitely as long as his railroad supply lines were intact. Sherman knew that direct assaults were inadvisable and so he began to plan for movements to the west of Atlanta with an eye to severing the West Point and Macon railroads that ran into the city from the southwest. On July 26th, Gen. O. O. Howard, who had taken over command of the Army of the Tennessee following McPherson’s death, was sent in a wide flanking maneuver to the vicinity of Ezra Methodist Church. Hood, sensing the danger to his exposed railroad, sent two corps to meet the threat. In a series of uncoordinated assaults, Hood’s army lost another 5,000 men and were thrown back at every point. President Jefferson Davis, upon hearing of the action, sent Hood a telegram, "Stop attacking before you completely destroy the army." Davis had replaced Johnston because he wanted a fight but he had got more than he bargained for in Hood. The beaten Confederates fell back into the Atlanta defenses and stalemate ensued for another month. Finally, on August 6th Sherman renewed his flanking maneuvers to the west of Atlanta. Hardee extended his lines to meet the threat near Utoy Church and managed to beat back the Federal assaults. Another long period of Federal shelling of the entrenched Confederates all along the lines commenced. Frustrated by his lack of progress, Sherman decided to release his hold on his own supply line, the Western and Atlantic Railroad, and move his entire army west to sever Hood’s railroad. On August 25th the shelling abruptly ceased and Hood’s men found Sherman’s entrenchments abandoned. Mistaking this for a Federal withdrawal, Atlanta celebrated its deliverance. The truth of the situation became known on August 30th, however, when the West Point railroad was cut. Hood immediately dispatched Hardee’s corps to Jonesboro, fifteen miles south of Atlanta to attempt to save the Macon railroad there. But Hardee ran headlong into Howard’s army, which had already arrived and entrenched. The Confederates bloodily repulsed. The following day, going in for the kill, three Federal divisions assaulted the remains of Hardee’s corps. The rebels mounted a fierce resistance and horrific Union casualties staved off complete annihilation for one more day. Hardee managed to withdraw during the night to Lovejoy Station, further south. The last remaining railroad supplying Atlanta was cut and Hood was forced to abandon Atlanta the next day. Sherman wired Washington, "So Atlanta is ours, and fairly won."

 
Warren House (1859)
Stately Oaks (1839)
Patrick Cleburne Confederate Cem. Jonesboro

    
  

(10-02) Looking north along GA 138 from Jonesboro

 

(10-02) Enlarge GA 138, Jonesboro

    
 

(10-02) The Warren House (1859) was used during the battle of Jonesboro as a Confederate Hospital and later as Union headquarters
 
Marker (The Warren House)

 

(10-02) Patrick Cleburne Confederate Cemetery in Jonesboro. The Cemetery is on the northern edge of the city and was the scene of heavy fighting
 
Marker (Two days of battle at Jonesboro)

  
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