August 21, 1864: Where’s Kilpatrick?

Hugh Judson Kilpatrick

Part of Kilpatrick’s cavalry were cut off after doing some damage to the railroad, and have returned. Still no news of Kilpatrick’s main force, and Sherman’s getting a little concerned — after all, look what happened to Stoneman. Meanwhile, the Charleston Mercury is quite certain that Sherman is doomed.


HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE CUMBERLAND, August 21, 1864.
Major-General SHERMAN:

Did you receive Colonel Klein’s report forwarded this morning? He broke the road near Fayette and destroyed a train of cars with locomotive, but being attacked by cavalry, supported by infantry, and cut off, as he says, from Kilpatrick, returned to Sandtown with but very little loss. If he broke the road between Atlanta and Kilpatrick, and then succeeded in effecting his escape, there can be but little doubt of Kilpatrick’s success, if he worked away from Atlanta, as there is but little probability of his meeting concentrating all cavalry coming to the front at Dalton have been given.

GEO. H. THOMAS,
Major-General.

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HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI, In the Field, near Atlanta, August 21, 1864-12 m.

General THOMAS:

I received Colonel Klein’s report. I feel certain that General Kilpatrick is doing good work; still it is time for us to hear from him direct.

W. T. SHERMAN,

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HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE OHIO, Near Atlanta, Ga., August 21, 1864.
Major-General SHERMAN:

Prisoners captured by General Cox last evening report that Kilpatrick struck the railroad at Jonesborough the morning after he started. Very distant artillery firing was heard in the direction of Macon from our extreme right last evening. I have learned nothing further indicative of Kilpatrick’s movements. Cox is making a demonstration on the right to aid him in his return. The enemy is using his artillery quite in front of the Fourteenth Corps this morning.

J. M. SCHOFIELD,
Major-General.

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Reprinted in the Richmond Daily Dispatch:

Operations in Sherman’s rear.

–It is stated that Wheeler has destroyed the bridges across the Etowah and Oostanaula rivers and burnt the track the whole way from Marietta. A large amount of stores are said to have fallen into his hands at Resaca, which was destroyed after our cavalry had appropriated all that was needful to them. At last accounts, the report says General Wheeler was rapidly marching in the direction of Dalton, where an immense amount of stones, both subsistence and ordnance, has been congregating for some time.
From the Macon Confederate of Friday we learn that General Wheeler massed his cavalry corps near Covington, on the Augusta railroad; and on Mondaymorning the grand cavalcade of gay cavaliers started for adventure and Sherman’s rear. It was rumored in town yesterday that he had captured Marietta and burned the Federal stores there, and had taken an immense number of prisoners. Be it as it may, it is certain that the long-expected effort to cut Sherman’s communication is now about to be realized. The Federal cavalry have nearly all recently been destroyed; and General Wheeler is now out just at the right time.
We are assured by gentlemen direct from headquarters that there is not the slightest intention entertained there of a retrograde move or the evacuation of Atlanta. On the other hand, it is expected that Sherman will be forced to retreat.–Charleston Mercury.

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