344 pp., 6.125 x 9.25, 25 halftones, 21 maps, 1 tables, appends., notes, bibl., index
Civil War America
Sherman, Johnston, and the Atlanta Campaign
While fighting his way toward Atlanta, William T. Sherman encountered his biggest roadblock at Kennesaw Mountain, where Joseph E. Johnston's Army of Tennessee held a heavily fortified position. The opposing armies confronted each other from June 19 to July 3, 1864, and Sherman initially tried to outflank the Confederates. His men endured heavy rains, artillery duels, sniping, and a fierce battle at Kolb's Farm before Sherman decided to directly attack Johnston's position on June 27. Kennesaw Mountain tells the story of an important phase of the Atlanta campaign. Historian Earl J. Hess explains how this battle, with its combination of maneuver and combat, severely tried the patience and endurance of the common soldier and why Johnston's strategy might have been the Confederates' best chance to halt the Federal drive toward Atlanta. He gives special attention to the engagement at Kolb's Farm on June 22 and Sherman's assault on June 27. A final section explores the Confederate earthworks preserved within the Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park.
“Readers will be engrossed by the personal story of these soldiers. . . . [A] gripping account.”
“Earl J. Hess has demonstrated the artistry of narrative military history perhaps better than any scholarly writer of history over the past several years.”
--Journal of American History
"Reads like a staff ride organized by an officer intimately familiar with the area’s topography. . . . Deftly interweaving his own insightful analysis with battle accounts, as recorded in the diaries and letters of combatants, Hess makes a convincing case for the importance of this still unappreciated battle."
--Civil War Times
"Hess is one of the most prolific quality authors of Civil War books going today. . . . Anyone interested in the Atlanta Campaign will find [his book] to be the centerpiece of their collection."
--Civil War Book Review
“Hess’s understanding of the Atlanta campaign, his skillful use of primary sources, his extensive knowledge of tactics, and his familiarity with the landscape result in a first-rate study.”
--Journal of Southern History
“A must read.”
--North Carolina Historical Review
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