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Maps of Pickett's Mill

Map Legend

The Battle

Then and Now

Order of Battle

Wargaming Pickett's Mill



The Battle of Pickett's Mill

          After two weeks of marching and fighting in north Georgia, the Union armies under the command of Major General William Tecumseh Sherman had reached the railroad bridge of the Western and Atlantic Railroad on the Etowah River.  Across the river to the south, the Confederate Army of Tennessee, under the command of General Joseph E. Johnston, had retreated to the mountainous terrain around Allatoona Pass.  There they dug into formidable defensive positions.  However, Sherman had no intention of confronting the Confederates head-on in terrain of their choosing.  Instead, he decided to abandon his railroad supply line, move to the southwest around Allatoona, and then march back east to the railroad, cutting off the Confederates army in the process.
          Unfortunately for him, Johnston was not fooled.  The Federal armies began crossing the Etowah on May 23rd, and Johnston had his forces in motion the same day.  Johnston decided against contesting the river crossings in force.  Instead, he put two of his three corps on the march toward the small town of Dallas, an important crossroads in the area.
          The two armies met on May 25th several miles northeast of Dallas at the crossroads near New Hope Church.  The Union Twentieth Corps of the Army of the Cumberland attempted to force the crossroads held by Lieutenant General John Bell Hood’s Corps of the Army of Tennessee.  The battle ended with a Confederate defensive victory.  The following day, the two armies began to deploy opposite each other in the thickly wooded terrain, each side hoping to gain an advantage over the other.  The Fourth Corps extended the Union left to the northeast, followed during the day by the Twenty-Third Corps of the Army of the Ohio.  The Confederates responded quickly.  Hood sent Major General Thomas Hindman’s Division of his corps from his left flank to his right to extend the line.  Johnston then sent Major General Patrick R. Cleburne’s Division of Lieutenant General William Hardee’s Corps to the area, extending the Confederate line still further.
          General Sherman’s orders for the 27th called for the Fourth and Twenty-Third Corps to attack south toward the high ground along the Dallas-Acworth Road (today’s Mount Tabor Church Road).  However, early morning reconnaissance discovered that the Confederates had extended their line too.  Sherman then revised his orders.  The new plan called for the 3rd Division of the Fourth Corps, commanded by Brigadier General Thomas J. Wood, to pull out of line and form behind the Twenty-Third Corps.  The 1st Division of the Fourteenth Corps, commanded by Brigadier General Richard W. Johnson, would joined them.  The two divisions would then march beyond the army’s left flank, find the end of the Confederate line, and attack the enemy in flank and rear.  Major General Oliver O. Howard, commanding officer of the Fourth Corps, would have overall control of the expedition.

          Begin the tour here at the 7:00 AM map, or pick another map with the drop-down menu to the left.

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