On the night of Nov. 17, 1864, the Right Wing (15th and 17th Corps) of General Sherman's army [US], which had marched south from Atlanta on Nov. 15th on its destructive March to the Sea, reached Jackson. Hq. Department and Army of the Tennessee (the Right Wing), Maj. Gen. O.O. Howard, USA, and the headquarters of both corps were established in town.
Woods' and Hazen's divisions of the 15th Corps (Osterhaus), which had turned south below Locust Grove to avoid Jackson, camped near Liberty Church (6 miles SW); Smith's division moved through Jackson to Flovilla (5 miles SE); Corse's division, encumbered with wagon trains, reached Jackson the next day.
Mower's and Leggett's divisions of the 17th Corps (Blair) camped east of Jackson; G.A. Smith's division, accompanied by the 1st Missouri Engineers (with a pontoon train), marched via the Key's Ferry road and camped near Worthville (9 miles NE).
Kilpatrick's cavalry division, which had moved down Towaliga River to threaten Griffin and Forsyth, camped near that stream. That night, Osterhaus sent the 29th Missouri Mounted Infantry to seize the ferry at Planters' Factory, on the Ocmulgee River at Seven Islands (9 miles SE), and to secure both banks of the river at that point for passage of the troops the next day.