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This Day in Georgia History

May 08, 1864

Battle of Rocky Face Ridge

General William T. Sherman’s forces engaged the Confederates at the Battle of Rocky Face Ridge (also known as Battle of Buzzard Roost, Battle of Mill Creek Gap, and Battle of Dug Gap). Rocky Face was a long north-to-south mountain ridge four miles west of Dalton. Johnston’s Confederate forces were dug in on the mountain, in particular protecting Buzzard Roost (also known as Mill Creek) Pass, through which the Western & Atlantic Railroad ran. Though taking a secondary pass known as Dug Gap, Union forces were unable to dislodge the Confederates from the main pass. Meanwhile, Gen. McPherson had taken part of the Union force southward to cross through Snake Creek Gap with a mission of disabling the railroad at Resaca and blocking Johnston’s retreat.

Battle of Rocky Face Ridge View large image
Source: Harper's Weekly