The Civil War, Day by Day

War is Hell


Atlanta Surrenders

As Hood and his men evacuated Atlanta during the early morning hours, they awakened the sleeping city by torching and dynamiting provisions. . . which would now benefit only the enemy. Journalist Wallace Reed reported that “the exploding missiles scattered their red hot fragments right and left. The houses rocked like cradles, and on every hand was heard the shattering of window glass and loose bricks.” The acrid smell lingered into the daylight hours as the city grimly awaited the Northern troops’ arrival.

Surprisingly, the ensuing surrender was almost pleasant. Shortly before noon, Union regiments marched into Atlanta to the tunes of “Yankee Doodle” and “The Battle Hymn of the Republic,” without a hint of disorder among the crowd. According to resident Carrie Berry, the Union soldiers “behaved very well. I think I shall like the Yankees.”

That evening at the White House, President Abraham Lincoln was half asleep at his desk when General Henry Halleck handed him a message from Sherman. “So Atlanta is ours, and fairly won.”





May's Archived Features:

Monday May 1, 2023
Tuesday May 2, 2023
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Friday May 5, 2023
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All illustrations by Mort Künstler. Text by Michael Aubrecht, Dee Brown, Henry Steele Commager, Rod Gragg, Mort Künstler, Edward Lengel, James McPherson, and James I. Robertson, Jr. - Copyright © 2001-2019. All Rights Reserved. No part of the contents of this web site may be reproduced or utilized in any form by any means without written consent of the artist.