property and archives, but on account of the scarcity of wagons and the demoralized condition of the people, adequate help could not be obtained.
As the penitentiary had been used for the manufacture of arms, and was expected to be destroyed, Governor Brown
released all the convicts and organized them into a regularly mustered — in and uniformed battalion under Captain Roberts
, which subsequently did good service in removing property and in battle.
Upon the arrival of the Federals
, two regiments under Colonel Hawley
, of Wisconsin
, occupied the capital city, and according to his own report, burned the railroad depot, two arsenals, a powder magazine and other public buildings and shops, and destroyed large quantities of arms, ammunition and salt.
A general pillage followed these acts of war. Then the two Federal corps pushed on by way of Hebron
, and Howard
's wing crossed the Oconee
's ferry and advanced in two columns by the 1st of December to the neighborhood of Sebastopol
Howard at this date reported that he had destroyed the Ocmulgee
cotton mills, and had supplied his army from the country, which he found full of provisions and forage.
‘I regret to say that quite a number of private dwellings which the inhabitants have left have been destroyed by fire, but without official sanction; also many instances of the most inexcusable and wanton acts, such as the breaking open of trunks, taking of silver plate, etc. I have taken measures to prevent it, and I believe they will be effectual.
The inhabitants are generally terrified and believe us a thousand times worse than we are.’
The wanton destruction went on, however, with rarely such efforts to restrain the soldiery from depredations.
advanced, Gen. H. C. Wayne
, with the cadets of the Georgia
military institute and part of the reserves, fell back across the Oconee
Maj. A. L. Hartridge
in a gallant fight defended the Oconee railroad