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This Day in Georgia Civil War History

September 13, 1864

Richmond Newspaper Printed Reports on Fall of Atlanta

The Richmond Times Dispatch printed reports on the fall of Atlanta.

The fall of Atlanta. We have received some particulars of the fall of Atlanta, and of events immediately preceding, which will be perused with interest. On the evening of the 1st instant the enemy left his entrenchments and moved against our works in heavy force. Four successive and furious assaults were in turn met and repulsed, but on the fifth charge the force thrown against Govan’s brigade was so overwhelming as to force it back, thereby flanking those portions of the line which still stood firm. Under these circumstances - outflanked and in want of ammunition–General Hardee was compelled to withdraw, which he did in the direction of Lovejoy’s, beyond Jonesboro’. General Lee, who appears to have held the right of our line in this day’s fight, also withdrew during the night towards Atlanta for the purpose of forming a junction with General Hood and the main army. On the next morning, Hardee’s corps having been cut off, and the enemy being firmly lodged on the Macon railroad, it was evident that Atlanta must be given up, and, accordingly, at the early hour of two o’clock, our army evacuated the place, retreating southward towards Hardee. A few hours afterward, that portion of the enemy still in position before Atlanta entered the city, and, after leaving a garrison, pressed through on the track of our forces. During the day it dees not appear that any hostilities occurred further than some skirmishing on flank and rear. About one o’clock on Saturday morning, the 3d, Hood effected his junction with Hardee, and our entire army was drawn up in line of battle before Lovejoy’s, not at all demoralized, and but little weakened by loss of men or materiel. Our right rested at McDonough, this place having been probably chosen in order to permit the line to be extended, if necessary, toward Covington, on the Georgia railroad. Our total losses attendant upon the fall of Atlanta amount to only fifteen hundred men. Eight field pieces were lost by Hardee; some siege guns left by Hood in Atlanta; from five to eight locomotives; between one hundred and fifty and two hundred freight cars, and some ordnance, commissary and quartermaster stores destroyed. The blow, though undeniably heavy, is by no means disheartening.–The loss of one position, be it ever so strong, is not our death- blow; for we have, ere this, suffered reverses trebly severe, and still live through it all. Reports from Atlanta, previous to the issuing of Sherman’s order, state that no outrages had been committed by the enemy, and the only annoyance felt was from pilfering and robbery by stragglers.–Some of the inhabitants who raised the white flag on the advent of the Yankees were met with volleys of abuse for their cowardice, and declarations that they (the enemy) would not trust those who, after living so long in a rebel city, had at length turned against their fellow-citizens.