Start of the Atlanta Campaign

Start of the Atlanta Campaign (HM1FXQ)

Location: Chickamauga, GA 30707 Walker County
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Country: United States of America
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N 34° 53.007', W 85° 16.035'

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Historic Chickamauga Georgia

Following the Federal victories at Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge in November, 1863, the Confederate army withdrew to Dalton, Georgia. The Federal Army at Chattanooga conducted periodic patrols into Walker County to forage and for reconnaissance. These visits were conducted in accordance to regulations. Horses, mules, and food were requisitioned and all firearms confiscated. "The Yankees had a Provost Marshall's Office at Lee and Gordon's Mill," J. Frank Henderson stated. "They had it in the old Jim Gordon [should be Lee] house. It stood on the top of the hill about where the Shields' house is now. The citizens have to go down there ever so often and give an account of their conduct."

There was a continuing Federal presence at the mills. As General William T. Sherman made plans for the Atlanta Campaign in the spring of 1864, General James B. McPherson, commanding the Federal Army of the Tennessee, was assigned to Lee and Gordon's Mills. Sherman intended for McPherson to flank the Confederates at Dalton by going south through Snake Creek Gap to Resaca.

General Sherman later made this report: "Having made my orders at Nashville for the concentration of the Armies of the Cumberland, Ohio, and Tennessee at and near Chattanooga by May 5, according to the programme of Lieutenant-General Grant, I repaired to Chattanooga in person on the 29th of April, and remained there until May 6, by which date General Thomas had grouped his army at and about Ringgold, General Schofield his at and near Cleveland, and General McPherson at and near Gordon's Mills on the Chickamauga. May 6, all the armies moved forward, General Thomas on Tunnel Hill, a gravelly range of hills covering the mouth of the famous Buzzard Roost Pass through Rocky Face Ridge; General Schofield along the east of that range approaching Dalton from the north, and General McPherson aiming for Resaca, eighteen miles south of Dalton, through Snake Creek Gap and Sugar Valley.

"The enemy lay at Dalton, holding the Buzzard Roost Pass, the line of Mill Creek to the north, and his line of railway back toward Atlanta. My purpose was that General McPherson should reach the railway at Resaca, destroy it to Johnston's rear, and then take up a strong defensive position near the mouth of the gap, and to operate on the flank of the enemy as he retreated. General McPherson reached Resaca with little difficulty but did not break the road. As soon as I learned this I... moved the whole army to Resaca. From the Rocky Face Ridge the enemy had a full view of our movement and a shorter and better line to reach Resaca, so that when on the 13th May I reached Resaca the enemy had evacuated Dalton and occupied Resaca in force. I did not hesitate to attack... I gradually enveloped the enemy in Resaca, and pressed him so hard that he evacuated in the night of May 15 and retreated by the good roads south."
Placed ByChickamauga Campaign Heritage Trail
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Monday, September 1st, 2014 at 12:33pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)16S E 658348 N 3861487
Decimal Degrees34.88345000, -85.26725000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 34° 53.007', W 85° 16.035'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds34° 53' 0.42" N, 85° 16' 2.1" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)706
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling North
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 2-14 Lee Gordan Mill Terrace, Chickamauga GA 30707, US
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