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[626] across which, 8 miles distant, lies the new but important city of Atlanta — a focus o several railroads, having some 20,000 inhabitants, and then the seat of extensive manufactories of Confederate supplies. It had been well fortified, early in 1863.

Johnston's position at Dalton was covered by an impassable mountain known as Rocky-Face ridge, cloven by the passage of Mill creek called Buzzard's Roost gap. The railroad traverses this pass, but our army could not; it being naturally very strong and now thoroughly fortified. Hence, while Thomas menaced1 and feebly assailed it in front, McPherson flanked the enemy's left, moving down by Ship's gap, Villanow, and Snake creek gap, to seize either Resaca or some other point well in its rear, while Schofield should press on Johnston's right. In executing these orders, Thomas was compelled to bear more heavily on the Rebel front than was intended: Newton's division of Howard's (4th) corps, and Geary's of Hooker's (20th) corps, assaulting in earnest and even carrying portions of the ridge; whence they were soon repelled with loss. Meantime, McPherson had reached the front of Resaca, scarcely resisted; but he could not carry it, and dared not remain between it and Johnston's main body; so he fell back to a strong position in Snake creek gap, which he could hold for some hours against all gainsayers. Sherman now, leaving Howard's corps and some cavalry to threaten Dalton in front, moved2 the rest of his forces rapidly in the track of Schofield, and through Snake creek gap; which compelled Johnston to evacuate his stronghold and fall back rapidly to Resaca; advancing in force against which, Kilpatrick, fighting the enemy's cavalry, was disabled by a shot. Sherman had calculated on seriously damaging Johnston when he thus retreated, but was unable to reach him — Johnston having the only direct, good road, while our flanking advance was made with great difficulty. Howard entered Dalton on the heels of the enemy, and pressed him sharply down to Resaca.

Sherman forthwith set on foot a new flanking movement by his right to turn Johnston out of Resaca; which Johnston countered by an attack on Hooker and Schofield, still in his front and on his left; but he was rather worsted in the bloody fight3 thus brought on: Hooker driving the Rebels from several hills, taking 4 guns and many prisoners. The Rebels retreated across the Oostenaula during the night, and our army entered Resaca in triumph next morning.

McPherson crossed on our right at Lay's ferry next day; Gen. Thomas moving directly through Resaca, on the heels of Hardee, who covered the Rebel retreat; while Schofield advanced on our left, over a rough region, by such apologies for roads as he could find or make. Jeff. C. Davis's division of Thomas's army kept down the north-west bank of the Oostenaula to Rome, where he took 8 or 10 great guns, and destroyed mills and founderies of great importance to the enemy; leaving here a garrison. Johnston made a momentary stand against our central advance in a strong position covering Adairsville; but, on the approach of our main body, he again retreated, with only

1 May 7.

2 May 10-11.

3 May 15.

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