This Week in the Civil War - #908
In the late afternoon of Thursday, September 1, 1864 Confederate General John Bell Hood, fearing a direct attack by William Tecumseh Sherman’s Union forces, ordered the immediate evacuation of Atlanta, Georgia. Extensive munitions and supplies could not be removed, so to prevent their falling into enemy hands, fires and explosions soon rocked Atlanta’s railroad depot and yards. Hood had failed to protect Atlanta; he was now intent on saving his army for another day. Outside of Atlanta, at Jonesborough Federal units under the command of Union Generals Thomas and Scofield clashed with Hardee’s Confederate corps for the second day in a row; by nightfall Hardee’s weakened corps reunited with Hood’s forces at Lovejoy Station, Georgia. Just after midnight, Union forces began to occupy Atlanta, the South’s largest city.