The Confederate Army Reorganizes
— Atlanta Campaign Heritage Trail —
In late November 1863, the Confederate “Army of Tennessee,” under General Braxton Bragg, retreated to Dalton following its defeat at Missionary Ridge near Chattanooga. Confederate camps during the winter of 1863-64 consisted mainly of wooden huts throughout the area. Private Frank
Our cabins were built of split logs, the cracks
being ‘chinked during the severest weather
with red clay, thus making a very comfortable
house indeed. An ample chimney was
constructed of sticks ‘chinked in the same
manner as the house; and when the fireplace
was piled up with wood and set going, we
had as comfortable quarters as to warmth as
one could wish.
Brigadier General Joseph H. Lewis, commander of the Kentucky “Orphan Brigade," chose the Hamilton House for his headquarters, with his tent located near the spring house. Federal troops controlled Kentucky throughout the war, preventing the “orphans” from visiting their families.
General Bragg resigned his army's command on December 2, 1863. His successor, General Joseph Johnston began rehabilitating and reorganizing his discouraged army. He restored morale by improving the food supply and instituting “home leave.” One well-received reform reunited the Tennessee Division and created a Georgia Division. As a demonstration of improving conditions and confidence, following a heavy snowfall, these two divisions staged “The Great Snowball Fight.” Noses were bloodied and fingers broken as Tennesseans defeated Georgians in the largest
A religious revival also swept through Confederate camps. Hundreds of soldiers were baptized, including Lieutenant General John B. Hood by fellow Lieutenant General and Episcopal Bishop Leonidas Polk. A witness to this baptism stated that Hood “looked happy and as though a great burden had been lifted.”
With springtime weather the fighting resumed.
The Confederate army retreated south from Dalton
on May 12, 1864. The Hamilton's daughter,
Elizabeth, watched the retreat while sitting on a gate
post waving a flag. “For hours I sat there waving
that flag while a long line of weary soldiers passed,"
she recalled. “Each one that passed saluted the flag
and gave a rebel yell...I didn't let the flag fall!”
Erected 2019 by Georgia Civil War Heritage Trails, Inc. (Marker Number 10.)
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Georgia Civil War Trails series list. A significant historical date for this entry is May 12, 1864.
Location. 34° 46.875′ N, 84° 58.347′ W. Marker is in Dalton, Georgia, in Whitfield County. Marker is at the intersection of Chattanooga Avenue and West Matilda Street, on the left when traveling north on Chattanooga
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. A different marker also named Hamilton House (a few steps from this marker); General Cleburne’s Proposal to Arm Slaves (approx. 0.4 miles away); The Huff House (approx. 0.4 miles away); George Whitefield (approx. 0.6 miles away); Tristram Dalton (approx. 0.7 miles away); Western and Atlantic Railroad Depot (approx. 0.7 miles away); William C. Martin House (approx. 0.7 miles away); Fort Hill (approx. 0.8 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Dalton.
Also see . . . Whitfield-Murray Historical Society on the Hamilton House. (Submitted on November 23, 2019, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama.)
Credits. This page was last revised on November 23, 2019. It was originally submitted on November 23, 2019, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama. This page has been viewed 247 times since then and 59 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on November 23, 2019, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama.