General Sherman To Be Topic Of Bandy Center Civil War Colloquium

Tuesday, January 28, 2014
General William Tecumseh Sherman
General William Tecumseh Sherman

For four long years, the War Between the States raged on, pitting brother against brother, dividing the nation.

General William T. Sherman ripped through the state of Georgia, battling his way through Rocky Face, Adairsville, and many other areas surrounding and including Atlanta during what’s known as the Atlanta Campaign. In a colloquium centered on Sherman’s tirade through Georgia, the Bandy Heritage Center for Northwest Georgia presents its 2014 Civil War in the Western Theater Colloquium, “The Devil Went Down to Georgia: The Atlanta Campaign,” a day-long symposium, on Saturday, Feb. 8.

Taking place in the Lecture Hall of the Northwest Georgia Trade & Convention Center, the colloquium will feature four lectures and discussions about this time period with local historians, Dr. Keith Bohannon, Dr. Richard McMurry, Robert Jenkins, Sr., and Dr. Steve Davis.

“Despite the attention given to the Battle of Gettysburg and the Eastern Theater of the American Civil War by modern historians, the outcome of the conflict was ultimately decided by the Atlanta Campaign,” says Dr. John D. Fowler, executive director of the Bandy Heritage Center and B.J. and Dicksie Bandy Chair of History at Dalton State.

“Lincoln’s reelection bid and his determination to prosecute the war to the end meant that the Confederacy had to stall the 1864 Union military drives until the November election. Rebel General Robert E. Lee and his Army of Northern Virginia were able to do just that in the Eastern Theater against Ulysses S. Grant,” he said.

“If Confederate General Joseph E. Johnston and his Army of Tennessee could keep William T. Sherman’s Union forces out of Atlanta, the Northern public might just vote Lincoln out of office over an unpopular and seemingly unwinnable war,” Dr. Fowler continued. “Therefore, on the outcome of the Atlanta Campaign hung the fate of two nations.”

“Ultimately, the Confederates failed to stop Sherman, and the fall of Atlanta proved to be a crucial event in convincing the Northern populous to allow Lincoln to push the war to a victorious conclusion,” he said.

Local history, civilian life, and battles will be a few of many subjects discussed throughout the colloquium.

“Dalton’s role in the Civil War has been greatly underappreciated,” said Mr. Jenkins. “The fate of our country 150 years ago rested largely on the events that happened in the summer of 1864 in and around Dalton.”

Starting off the seminar will be Dr. Bohannon, associate professor of History at the University of West Georgia. Dr. Bohannon teaches classes that focus on the Civil War and Reconstruction, Southern United States history, and Georgia history. His lecture, entitled “Witness the Redemption of the Army: Re-enlistments in the Confederate Army of Tennessee, January-March, 1864,” begins at 9 a.m.

At 10 a.m., Dr. Richard McMurry will speak on “A New Framework for the Atlanta Campaign.” Dr. McMurry is a former professor of History at North Carolina State University and Valdosta State University. He is the author of several books, including “Atlanta 1864” and “John Bell Hood and the War for Southern Independence.”

Following lunch, Robert Jenkins, Sr. will present a lecture on his first book “The Battle of Peachtree Creek,” at 12:30 p.m. Mr. Jenkins is a local Dalton attorney and works actively in researching, protecting, and preserving local Civil War sites.

Dr. Steve Davis will lecture on his latest book, “What the Yankees Did to Us: Sherman’s Bombardment and Wrecking of Atlanta” at 1:30 p.m. Dr. Davis is the author of “Atlanta Will Fall” and is the book review editor for “Blue and Gray” magazine.

Between the hours of 2:30 and 4 p.m., there will be a roundtable discussion as well as a book signing.

“This year’s colloquium is dedicated to the memory of Mr. Larry Miller of Big Canoe, Georgia,” said Brian Hilliard, project director for the Bandy Center. “Mr. Miller was an enthusiastic supporter of the Bandy Center for many years and donated sculptures, documents, models and artwork from his personal Civil War collection.”

The colloquium is free and open to the public and will take place in the Lecture Hall of the NorthWest Georgia Trade & Convention Center from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information about Bandy Center programs, contact Brian Hilliard at 706 272-4452 or at

Friends of Moccasin Bend Lecture Monday, October 5th

On Monday, October 5, 7- 8:00 PM, Dr. Adam King will give a presentation entitled “Gradiometers, Mounds and Copper Plates: Piecing Together a History of the Etowah Site.” His presentation is sponsored through a partnership between the Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Geography at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and the Friends of Moccasin Bend. This is the second ... (click for more)

Soddy Daisy Group Forms Historical Association

A group of local area citizens has formed a new organization, the Soddy, Daisy and Montlake Historical Association. The new association plans to preserve and display the unique histories of these North Hamilton County communities.      The Soddy, Daisy and Montlake communities have made contributions to the history of Hamilton County and the state of Tennessee ... (click for more)

Lee University Social Media Threat Suspect Identified, Charged And In Custody

Lee University student Olayinka Opaso, from Nigeria, 18, confessed on Tuesday to a senior Lee University official about his involvement in the Yik Yak post describing potential threats to Lee University students. Opaso was immediately placed into custody by the campus security director, Matt Brinkman. Mr. Brinkman transported Opaso to the Cleveland Police Department where ... (click for more)

Bullets Ring Out Near Alton Park School Bus Stop Sending Students Scrambling; Vehicle Used Had Been Carjacked In Knoxville

Bullets rang out near an Alton Park school bus stop on Tuesday morning, sending students scrambling for cover. Police took two suspects into custody. The incident happened on W. 38th Street across from the Bethlehem Center and was believed to be gang related. Crime tape quickly went up at the shooting scene, and W. 38th Street was temporarily blocked. There were five ... (click for more)

A New Commercial Look For Signal Mountain

A speaker at the Signal Mountain Town Council meeting last night presented some very interesting information about the council’s new bigger and brighter vision of our commercial area. Councilman Spalding presented a list of sign changes to the Design Review Commission that the council wants and several of those items were approved last night.  Still to come on the list are ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: It Was Our Tool Shed

Some said the huge beams had been soaking in creosote for two or three years when the men finally stacked them to dry. They were long, about 20 feet each, and thick – maybe eight inches. I remember they were 14 inches wide but the biggest thing I remember was that it was the ugliest lumber I ever saw. They cured the beams for one entire hot summer in the Tool Shed, a huge building ... (click for more)