After leaving Chattanooga, General Sherman headed toward Atlanta, Georgia. At that time Atlanta was the major industrial city of the Confederacy. Taking Atlanta would cripple the South. The Confederate Army came to stop him. Heading that army was 57 year old Joseph E. Johnson, the highest ranking officer of the US Army to resign his commission to fight for his home State of Virginia, and the South. Of course, I already told you the end of this story in Day 249.
The two armies clashed at Rocky Face Ridge, Resaca, Cassville, New Hope Church, Pickett’s Mill and Dallas. Each time Sherman was able to outflank Johnson.
Finally, Sherman reach Kennesaw Mountain on June 27, 1864. Although the mountain was only two miles long, Sherman was spread thin and could not outflank Johnson. Johnson at the top of the mountain, Sherman at the bottom. The battle raged on for 3 days. Then all of a sudden, Johnson left. Was it a tactical error? Who knows. Johnson thought he could better defend Atlanta by the river.
Johnson lost 800 men, Sherman 1,800. A senseless battle, as nothing was really gained (but weren’t most of the battles senseless?)
From the top of the mountain, you can see Atlanta.