Shermanâ€™s Railroad Supply Line
Atlanta Campaign 1864
The importance of the railroad to General William T. Sherman, USA in the
Atlanta Campaign of 1864 was more pronounced than many may believe. The
railroad also played a vital role to the Confederate Army as well. The Western
and Atlantic Railroad helped to support both Armies during 1864.
It has been discussed that Shermanâ€™s Federals lived off the land of north
Georgia and the surrounding countryside which they did mostly during the March
to the Sea. But much of the supplies that were brought into the area before
Atlanta from the north by railroad were provided by the Unionâ€™s own
organized and administered supply bureaus.
This brings to mind also the damage done to Atlanta by General John B. Hood,
CSA by destroying a trainload of gun powder and bullets in the eastern part of the
city during his evacuation of Atlanta. The damage caused by this explosion alone
rivaled the damage done to Atlanta by General Sherman.
After Atlanta the Union force would move southeast to Savannah. They would
then forage and live off the land. Many of those supplies were gathered in the
weeks before the start of the March to the Sea. But for several months before
Sherman entered Atlanta and during his occupation he enjoyed the supplies sent
by rail from the north.
1. The Atlanta Historical Society Journal, 1984.
2. The Role of Railroads in the Atlanta Campaign, Mruck, 1961.
3. Shermanâ€™s Railroad Supports in the Atlanta Campaign, Clauss, 1966.
4. The Railroadâ€™s of Georgia The Confederate War Effort, Black, 1947.
5. The Western and Atlantic Railroad 1864, Bogle, 1981.
6. The Supply of Shermanâ€™s Armies during the Atlanta Campaign, UGA,