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In Their Own Words

December 18, 1864

Sherman Letter Regarding Savannah

General Sherman wrote a letter to Grant outlining his plans to attack Savannah. In his memoirs he wrote:

“On the 18th of December, at my camp by the side of the plank-road, eight miles back of Savannah, I received General Hardee’s [Dec. 17] letter declining to surrender, when nothing remained but to assault. The ground was difficult, and, as all former assaults had proved so bloody, I concluded to make one more effort to completely surround Savannah on all sides, so as further to excite Hardee’s fears, and, in case of success, to capture the whole of his army. We had already completely invested the place on the north, west, and south, but there remained to the enemy on the east the use of an old dike or plank-road leading into South Carolina… . “

Source: Mills Lane (ed.), Marching Through Georgia: William T. Sherman’s Personal Narrative of His March Through Georgia (New York: Arno Press, 1978), p.177.