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Franklin (Tennessee, United States) (search for this): chapter 29
described step by step, and its condition and probable course be estimated with sound judgment. The opening of the Mississippi River in the previous year had cut off from the rebellion the vast resources west of the great river. Sherman's Meridian campaign in February had rendered useless the railroads of the State of Mississippi. The capture of Atlanta and the march to the sea had ruined the railroads of Georgia, cutting off another huge slice of Confederate resources. The battles of Franklin and Nashville had practically annihilated the principal Confederate army in the West. Sherman now proposed to Grant that he would subject the two Carolinas to the same process, by marching his army through the heart of them from Savannah to Raleigh. The game is then up with Lee, he confidently added, unless he comes out of Richmond, avoids you, and fights me, in which case I should reckon on your being on his heels. . . If you feel confident that you can whip Lee outside of his intrenc
Georgia (Georgia, United States) (search for this): chapter 29
ose from his base of supplies, march with the remainder to the sea; living upon the country, and making the interior of Georgia feel the weight of war. Grant did not immediately fall in with Sherman's suggestion; and Sherman prudently waited untilof the Southern autumn, and singing the inspiring melody of John Brown's body, Sherman's army began its marching through Georgia as gaily as if it were starting on a holiday. And, indeed, it may almost be said such was their experience in compariso the railroads of the State of Mississippi. The capture of Atlanta and the march to the sea had ruined the railroads of Georgia, cutting off another huge slice of Confederate resources. The battles of Franklin and Nashville had practically annihiautumn weather, the army had now to face the wintry storms that blew in from the neighboring coast. Instead of the dry Georgia uplands, his route lay across a low sandy country cut by rivers with branches at right angles to his line of march, and
Chattanooga (Tennessee, United States) (search for this): chapter 29
, only twenty-eight or thirty miles on the railroad southeast of Chattanooga, where their new commander, Johnston, had, in the spring of 1864is future operations. Sherman prepared himself by uniting at Chattanooga the best material of the three Union armies, that of the Cumberle, and as his necessary route, the railroad leading thither from Chattanooga. It was obviously a difficult line of approach, for it traversef about one hundred and twenty miles of railroad from Atlanta to Chattanooga, and very near one hundred and fifty miles more from ChattanoogaChattanooga to Nashville. Hood, held at bay at Lovejoy's Station, was not strong enough to venture a direct attack or undertake a siege, but chose the ending invasion; and, abandoning the whole line of railroad from Chattanooga to Atlanta, and cutting entirely loose from his base of supplieAtlanta, he sent back his sick and wounded and surplus stores to Chattanooga, withdrew the garrisons, burned the bridges, broke up the railro
South Carolina (South Carolina, United States) (search for this): chapter 29
iles of marching. Under such conditions, Sherman's army made a mid-winter march of four hundred and twenty-five miles in fifty days, crossing five navigable rivers, occupying three important cities, and rendering the whole railroad system of South Carolina useless to the enemy. The ten to fifteen thousand Confederates with which General Hardee had evacuated Savannah and retreated to Charleston could, of course, oppose no serious opposition to Sherman's march. On the contrary, when Sherman reached Columbia, the capital of South Carolina, on February 16, Hardee evacuated. Charleston, which had been defended for four long years against every attack of a most powerful Union fleet, and where the most ingenious siege-works and desperate storming assault had failed to wrest Fort Wagner from the enemy. But though Charleston fell without a battle, and was occupied by the Union troops on the eighteenth, the destructive hand of war was at last heavily laid upon her. The Confederate govern
Cape Fear (North Carolina, United States) (search for this): chapter 29
Grant promptly adopted the plan, and by formal orders directed Sherman to execute it. Several minor western expeditions were organized to contribute to its success. The Union fleet on the coast was held in readiness to cooperate as far as possible with Sherman's advance, and to afford him a new base of supply, if, at some suitable point he should desire to establish communications with it. When, in the middle of January, 1865, a naval expedition captured Fort Fisher at the mouth of Cape Fear River, an army corps under General Schofield was brought east from Thomas's Army of the Tennessee, and sent by sea to the North Carolina coast to penetrate into the interior and form a junction with Sherman when he should arrive. Having had five weeks for rest and preparation, Sherman began the third stage of his campaign on February I, with a total of sixty thousand men, provisions for twenty days, forage for seven, and a full supply of ammunition for a great battle. This new undertakin
North Carolina (North Carolina, United States) (search for this): chapter 29
ganized to contribute to its success. The Union fleet on the coast was held in readiness to cooperate as far as possible with Sherman's advance, and to afford him a new base of supply, if, at some suitable point he should desire to establish communications with it. When, in the middle of January, 1865, a naval expedition captured Fort Fisher at the mouth of Cape Fear River, an army corps under General Schofield was brought east from Thomas's Army of the Tennessee, and sent by sea to the North Carolina coast to penetrate into the interior and form a junction with Sherman when he should arrive. Having had five weeks for rest and preparation, Sherman began the third stage of his campaign on February I, with a total of sixty thousand men, provisions for twenty days, forage for seven, and a full supply of ammunition for a great battle. This new undertaking proved a task of much greater difficulty and severer hardship than his march to the sea. Instead of the genial autumn weather, the
Morris Island (South Carolina, United States) (search for this): chapter 29
to fifteen thousand Confederates with which General Hardee had evacuated Savannah and retreated to Charleston could, of course, oppose no serious opposition to Sherman's march. On the contrary, when Sherman reached Columbia, the capital of South Carolina, on February 16, Hardee evacuated. Charleston, which had been defended for four long years against every attack of a most powerful Union fleet, and where the most ingenious siege-works and desperate storming assault had failed to wrest Fort Wagner from the enemy. But though Charleston fell without a battle, and was occupied by the Union troops on the eighteenth, the destructive hand of war was at last heavily laid upon her. The Confederate government pertinaciously adhered to the policy of burning accumulations of cotton to prevent it falling into Union hands; and the supply gathered in Charleston to be sent abroad by blockade runners, having been set on fire by the evacuating Confederate officials, the flames not only spread to
Wilmington, N. C. (North Carolina, United States) (search for this): chapter 29
s long nursed the accusation that it was the Union army which burned the city as a deliberate act of vengeance. Contrary proof is furnished by the orders of Sherman, leaving for the sufferers a generous supply of food, as well as by the careful investigation by the mixed commission on American and British claims, under the treaty of Washington. Still pursuing his march, Sherman arrived at Cheraw March 3, and opened communication with General Terry, who had advanced from Fort Fisher to Wilmington. Hitherto, his advance had been practically unopposed. But now he learned that General Johnston had once more been placed in command of the Confederate forces, and was collecting an army near Raleigh, North Carolina. Well knowing the ability of this general, Sherman became more prudent in his movements. But Johnston was able to gather a force of only twenty-five or thirty thousand men, of which the troops Hardee brought from Charleston formed the nucleus; and the two minor engagements
Tennessee (Tennessee, United States) (search for this): chapter 29
edition capture of Atlanta Hood Supersedes Johnston Hood's invasion of Tennessee Franklin and Nashville Sherman's March to the sea capture of Savannah nications were gradually shaded off into a plan for a Confederate invasion of Tennessee. Sherman, on his part, finally matured his judgment that instead of losing and back a portion of it under the command of General Thomas to defend the State of Tennessee against the impending invasion; and, abandoning the whole line of railroaggestion; and Sherman prudently waited until the Confederate plan of invading Tennessee became further developed. It turned out as he hoped and expected. Having grtunes of this campaign further than to state that the Confederate invasion of Tennessee ended in disastrous failure. It was severely checked at the battle of Franklestruction of Confederate resources in Alabama and the country bordering on East Tennessee. Military affairs were plainly in a condition which justified Sherman in t
Alabama (Alabama, United States) (search for this): chapter 29
tle to impede Sherman's advance to Goldsboro, where he arrived on March 23, forming a junction with the Union army sent by sea under Schofield, that had reached the same point the previous day. The third giant stride of Sherman's great campaign was thus happily accomplished. His capture of Atlanta, his march to the sea and capture of Savannah, his progress through the Carolinas, and the fall of Charleston, formed an aggregate expedition covering nearly a thousand miles, with military results that rendered rebellion powerless in the central States of the Southern Confederacy. Several Union cavalry raids had accomplished similar destruction of Confederate resources in Alabama and the country bordering on East Tennessee. Military affairs were plainly in a condition which justified Sherman in temporarily devolving his command on General Schofield and hurrying by sea to make a brief visit for urgent consultation with General Grant at his headquarters before Richmond and Petersburg.
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