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Topics in Chronicling America - Sherman's March to the Sea

“History will brand him a robber and incendiary, and will deservedly ‘damn him to everlasting fame.” In 1864, General William Tecumseh Sherman led his troops on a “total warfare” campaign, from Atlanta to Savannah, Georgia. This campaign, known as Sherman’s March to the Sea, was marked by its objective, to cripple the Confederacy’s ability to wage war. They destroyed anything and everything important to the war effort, leaving ruins where Georgia’s great cities once stood. Read more about it!

The information and sample article links below provide access to a sampling of articles from historic newspapers that can be found in the Chronicling America: American Historic Newspapers digital collection ( Use the Suggested Search Terms and Dates to explore this topic further in Chronicling America.

Picture of soldiers tearing up track

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Important Dates:

  • November 15, 1864. Sherman’s March to the Sea begins as his troops leave Atlanta, GA.
  • November 22, 1864. Battle of Griswoldville: First battle in the March to the Sea.
  • November 24-25, 1864. Skirmish at Ball’s Ferry.
  • November 28, 1864. Battle of Buckhead Creek: A victory for the Union and Sherman’s cavalry under the command of General H. Judson Kilpatrick.
  • November 30, 1864. Battle of Honey Hill: Failed attempt to cut off the Charleston and Savannah Railroad in support of Sherman's projected arrival in Savannah, GA.
  • December 4, 1864. Battle of Waynesboro: A cavalry battle that cleared the way to Savannah, GA for Sherman’s troops.
  • December 13, 1864. Battle of Fort McAllister: A strategic victory for Sherman’s troops, gaining control of Fort McAllister just outside of Savannah, GA.
  • December 22, 1864. Savannah surrenders to General Sherman.

Suggested Search Strategies:

  • [Try the following terms in combination, proximity, or as phrases using Search Pages in Chronicling America.] General Sherman, march, Georgia, Savannah, Griswoldville, Ball’s Ferry, Buckhead Creek, Waynesboro, Charleston and Savannah Railroad, Honey Hill, Fort McAllister.
  • To narrow results, search between 1864-1866.

Sample Articles from Chronicling America:

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  April 11, 2014
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