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The Battle of Peachtree Creek July 20, 1864 - The Federal Advance - The Change of Command– Fulton Co., GA
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Lat34North
N 33° 48.630 W 084° 24.194
16S E 740368 N 3744177
Quick Description: The Battle of Peachtree Creek plaques are located t the entrance to Tanyard Creek Park on Collier Rd., Atlanta, GA. There are a total of 6 plaques.
Location: Georgia, United States
Date Posted: 11/10/2009 11:34:45 AM
Waymark Code: WM7MRT
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member GA Cacher
Views: 1

Long Description:

The Battle of Peachtree Creek July 20, 1864 - The Federal Advance

After noon on July 9th, Schofield´s Army of the Ohio (23rd Corps) had forced Johnston to cross the Chattahoochee River that night by a surprise crossing up river at Soap Creek. On the 12th, Howard´s 4th Corps of Thomas´ Army of the Cumberland (4th, 14th and 20th Corps) crossed Power´s Ferry on Schofield´s right. As Johnston had foreseen, McPherson´s Army of the Tennessee (15th, 16th and 17th Corps) moved upriver to Roswell and began crossing while Palmer´s 14th Corps and Hooker´s 20th Corps prepared to cross at Pace´s Ferry. On the 17th, Palmer crossed and moved toward Peachtree Creek and McPherson moved toward Decatur. On the 18th, Schofield, accompanied by Sherman, moved toward Decatur to connect with McPherson; Howard moved to Buckhead; Palmer reached Peachtree Creek; and Hooker crossed the river and camped along West Pace´s Ferry Road. By nightfall, Sherman´s unsupported right wing occupied a line facing Peachtree Creek extending from Buckhead to the river. So far, the advance had been harassed by Wheeler´s cavalry alone. It had met no enemy infantry. On the 18th, Wood´s division of Howard´s corps moved down Peachtree Road to the creek and captured the bridge. Hooker advanced to the creek, placed his artillery on the hills, and crossed the infantry of Geary´s division on an improvised footbridge at Northside Drive. Geary drove back the enemy´s skirmishers, occupied the hills by the creek and built two wagon bridges for the artillery and trains. Ward´s division was sent to Peachtree Road to cross next day and move up on Geary´s left. On the 20th, Geary moved to Collier Road and took position with Candy´s brigade on the left, near Tanyard Branch, Jones´ on his right extending to Northside Drive, and Ireland´s massed behind Jones´. Candy´s left overlooked this site. Bundy´s and Sloan´s batteries were placed on Candy´s line to sweep the open ground to the left front. The 33rd N.J. Infantry was advanced to picket the ridge between Greystone and Colland Drives. William´s division crossed the creek and formed on the ridge along Northfleet Road with a deep ravine covering his front, Knip´s brigade, on the roght extended to Howell Mill Road, with Ruger´s behind it in reserve and Roberson´s extending east across Northside Drive, behind Geary´s right. On Howell Mill Road, Anson G. McCook´s brigade, the left of Palmer´s corps, entrenched near Ruger. Ward´s division crossed at Peachtree Road and moved southeast over broken ground, leaving two batteries at the bridge.

The Federal Advance (Cont.)

It finally reached the golf course area and deployed with Wood´s brigade on the left, Coburn´s in the center and Harrison´s on the right. Earlier, Newton´s division of Howard´s corps had crossed the creek and advanced on Peachtree Road to the high ground north of Collier Road. Newton deployed Kimball´s brigade west of the road, extending through the hospital site, and Blake´s extending east along Brighton Road. Bradley´s remained in reserve on the road near the railroad bridge. Four guns of Goodspeen´s battery were emplaced on the road. Although a gap existed between Newton´s right and Geary´s left, Ward was moving to fill it. Despite Johnston´s planning, the Federal right wing had crossed Peachtree Creek without being attacked; but, unsuspected by Sherman, who was near the Emory campus, the Battle of Peachtree Creek was about to begin.

The Change of Command
By the 17th, Johnston´s engineers had staked out a strong outer line, overlooking the valley of Peachtree Creek, from which he could launch
his attack on Thomas´ troops while they crossed the creek, unready to fight. With Thomas shattered, he could attack McPherson with his whole army. If not successful, his army "had a near and secure place of refuge in Atlanta, which he could hold forever and so win the campaign." He announced his intention to the troops and began moving them into positions on the outer line, which ran east from Crestlawn Cemetery through the E. P. Howell School site, over Loring Heights, across Peachtree Street, uphill past the TV station, and on beyond Sherwood Forest to Highland Avenue, where it turned south to the GA RR. Hood´s corps was sent to the latter line to face McPherson. Hardee´s corps was posted with its right covering Loring Heights, its left connecting with Stewart´s corps. at Howell Mill Road. Stewart´s left extended to Marietta Road. But Johnston was not destined to fight his battle. That night, he was relieved and Gen. John B. Hood replaced him Since the army loved "Old Joe" Johnston and knew Hood to be rash and to lack experience in high command, morale suffered severely. At Hood´s request Johnston continued to give orders until sunset next day when he departed.

Georgia Historic Commission - Georgia Civil War Centennial Commission
Placed 1964

Type of Marker: Park

Marker #: None

Date: 1964

Sponsor: Georgia Historic Commission - Georgia Civil War Centennial Commission

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