had just broken, and was purposing more thoroughly to destroy) was fully taxed with transporting the supplies needed by our army; and not a pound of food would be sent in by the Confederates
from the adjacent country, whoever might perish.
To feed the remaining inhabitants of Atlanta
in that city could not cost our Government less than $1,000,000 per quarter, supposing it were at all practicable; while it must greatly cripple Sherman
and fetter his future operations, even supposing it could be done at all. To let them stay an starve would have excited still louder and more frenzied denunciations.
The order for the removal of the people was therefore at once wise, provident, and humane; yet Mayor J. M. Calhoun
and his council appealed to Sherman
in deprecation of “the woe, the horror, the suffering” involved in the execution of his order, as if it had been impelled by mere caprice or wanton cruelty, instead of being the stern dictate of an obvious, imperative necessity.
And this was but one of many instances wherein the Rebels
chilled the admiration which the desperate gallantry of their fighting was calculated to excite, by screechy objurgations, and theatrical appeals for sympathy with their distresses, which they, who had so haughtily and so needlessly rushed into war, should have had the dignity and self-respect to abstain from.
The removal was quietly and humanely effected: all who chose to go South (446 families, 2,035 persons) being transported in wagons at the national cost, with their furniture and clothes, averaging 1,651 pounds per family, to Rough-and-Ready, or to our outpost in that direction ; while those who preferred to come North were brought at Government cost by railroad to Chattanooga
When all was done, Major Clan
, of Hood
's staff, tendered to Col. Warner
, of Sherman
's staff, his written acknowledgment1
of “the uniform courtesy you have shown on all occasions to me and my people, and the promptness with which you have corrected all irregularities arising in our intercourse.”
This was the simple truth.
The removal was not only right in itself, but was effected with considerate tenderness.
was still north of the Chattahoochee
, a Rebel raiding, force of cavalry, under Pillow
, had dashed into Lafayette
, nearly up to Chattanooga
, held by Col. Watkins
with 400 men, and had very nearly taken it; when Col. Croxton
, 4th Kentucky, came up and beat them off; taking 70 prisoners. The killed and wounded on either side were about 100.
, after breaking the railroad at Calhoun
, as already narrated, appeared before Dalton
, which he summoned ; but Col. Leibold
held it firmly till Gen. Steedman
arrived from Chattanooga
and drove the Rebels
now pushed up into East Tennessee
, halting at Athens
; whence, on being menaced, he dashed eastward across the Little Tennessee, and thence across the Holston
at Strawberry plains; and so, circling around Knoxville
, he crossed the Clinch
, and the Cumberland mountains
, by Sequatchie, MeMinnville, Murfreesborough