On Nov. 16, 1864, Maj. Gen. G. W. Smith, CSA, reached Griffin (30 miles NW) after a night withdrawal from Lovejoy's Station (13 miles N of Griffin) where he had been posted to support Iverson's division of Wheeler's cavalry [CS] which was watching for a movement by Gen. Sherman's army [US] from Atlanta toward Macon. His force consisted of 2800 infantry of the First Division, Georgia Militia, 3 batteries, and about 250 local reserve cavalry.
On the 15th, Gen. Sherman's Right Wing had marched from White Hall (West End) near Atlanta toward Jonesboro and Lovejoy's Station. Although Gen. Smith was prepared to fight a delaying action at Lovejoy's Station, the Union column turned SE at Morrow's Station (4 miles N of Jonesboro), toward Stockbridge and McDonough, forcing him to withdraw to the fortifications of Griffin to protect the hospital center there.
Late on the 16th, Gen. Smith learned that the Union forces had moved south through Stockbridge and McDonough toward Jackson, on the Atlanta-Macon road (22 miles N of Forsyth). At dark, he withdrew from Griffin and marched his command to Forsyth, to protect this defenseless town and to put his troops into position to delay the enemy's advance on Macon