every service required of them.
Immediately after the battle of the 22d they had been ordered to Poplar Springs
, and soon afterward to the trenches on the west of the Marietta
From that time until the close of the siege they were under close fire, night and day, and moving from one station to another had their full share of all the hardest places, from the Marietta
road to the extreme right.
, finding that he could not push his lines closer immediately south of Atlanta
, determined to move his whole army further south, beyond the stretching capacity of Hood's
army, and ride over opposition by sheer force of concentrated strength.
But before beginning he ordered down from Chattanooga
four 4 1/2-inch rifled guns to try on the city.
They were put to work night and day, and he observed that they ‘caused frequent fires and created confusion, yet the enemy seemed determined to hold his forts even if the city was destroyed.’
During this furious cannonade, we are told by General Hood
, “women and children fled into cellars, and were forced to seek shelter a greater length of time than at any period of the bombardment,” which continued from the 9th to the 25th of August. ‘It was painful,’ continued Hood
, ‘yet strange, to mark how expert grew the old men, women and children in building their little underground forts, into which to fly for safety during the storm of shell and shot.
Often amid the darkness of night they were constrained to seek safety in these dungeons beneath the earth.
Albeit, I cannot recall one word from their lips expressive of dissatisfaction or willingness to surrender.’
On the 16th of August, Sherman
issued his orders preparatory to the grand movement by the right flank, to begin on the 18th.
In the meantime General Wheeler
had been ordered to move upon the Federal
communications; destroy them at various points between Marietta
; then cross the Tennessee river
and break the lines of the two railroads running to Nashville