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Oconee in Washington County, Georgia — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

The Defense of the Oconee Bridge

 
 
The Defense of the Oconee Bridge Marker image. Click for full size.
By David Seibert, September 5, 2010
1. The Defense of the Oconee Bridge Marker
Inscription.  On Nov. 19, 1854, Maj. A. L. Hartridge, CSA, arrived from Savannah with 186 men and 2 guns [CS] to defend the railroad bridge against raiding parties from Gen. Sherman’s army [US], then on its destructive March to the Sea. Next day, he was joined by Maj. Gen. H. C. Wayne, Adj. Gen. of Georgia, with the Corps of Cadets, G. M. I., a detachment of Factory and Penitentiary Guards, Roberts’ Guards (paroled convicts) and three small military units (infantry, cavalry and artillery), all under Maj. F. W. Capers, Supt., Georgia Military Institute. Total 450 men and 4 guns. Increments from Wheeler’s cavalry increased Wayne’s force to about 1200 men and 6 guns.

On the 23rd, Wayne learned that Union cavalry had reached Ball’s Ferry (8 miles S) and that Gen. Sherman had occupied Milledgeville. To protect his flanks, he burned the bridges over Buffalo Creek, above Oconee, and sent Hartridge with 2 companies of cavalry, 80 infantry and 2 guns to Ball’s Ferry.

On the 25th, Sherman’s Left Wing had crossed the Oconee at Milledgeville and his right was forcing a passage at Ball’s Ferry. Although he had held the bridge for three days
The Defense of the Oconee Bridge Marker image. Click for full size.
By David Seibert, September 5, 2010
2. The Defense of the Oconee Bridge Marker
Looking north on Georgia Highway 272 toward the railroad tracks and the town of Oconee.
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against frontal assaults, Wayne’s flanks were now threatened; so he recalled the force at Ball’s Ferry and, early on the 26th, evacuated Oconee (No. 14, CRR) and withdrew to Tennille (No. 13, (CRR).
 
Erected 1958 by Georgia Historical Commission. (Marker Number 150-18.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Georgia Historical Society, and the Sherman’s March to the Sea series lists. A significant historical month for this entry is October 1893.
 
Location. 32° 51.352′ N, 82° 57.068′ W. Marker is in Oconee, Georgia, in Washington County. Marker is at the intersection of Georgia Route 272 and Ridgeview Drive, on the right when traveling south on State Route 272. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Oconee GA 31067, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Sherman's Right Wing (approx. 4 miles away); Ball's Ferry (approx. 5 miles away); The Defense of Ball's Ferry (approx. 5 miles away); a different marker also named Ball's Ferry (approx. 5.1 miles away); a different marker also named Ball's Ferry (approx. 5.1 miles away); Jefferson Davis (approx. 5½ miles away); Irwin’s Crossroad (approx. 5.9 miles away); Jared Irwin (approx. 6.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Oconee.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on September 8, 2010, by David Seibert of Sandy Springs, Georgia. This page has been viewed 1,193 times since then and 7 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on September 8, 2010, by David Seibert of Sandy Springs, Georgia. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.

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Apr. 15, 2021