Buckhead in Morgan County, Georgia — The American South (South Atlantic)
The Oconee River Railroad Bridge
Blue Springs - Swords
—March to the Sea Heritage Trail —
On Saturday November 19, 1864, the Federal 20th Corps division of Brigadier General John W. Geary had orders to destroy the Georgia Railroad's bridge over the Oconee River. After marching through Madison they continued their previous day's work of 'tearing up and burning all...of the [rail]road." Stopping for lunch at Buckhead Station, soldiers "destroyed the water-tank...and all the railroad buildings." Shortly thereafter Geary sent two separate parties ahead, one to burn the Oconee River railroad bridge and another to destroy all ferryboats and a large mill to the immediate north along the Apalachee River. After "exchanging shots with the enemy's scouts and driving them away Geary reported, "both of these parties were successful" and the railroad bridge
Having accomplished their primary mission, General Geary's division marched to the nearby small community of Blue Springs and the plantation of Colonel Lee Jordan. Federal soldiers destroyed almost 50,000 bushels of corn stored at the plantation plus 280 cotton bales. This brought the division's destructive total for the day to over 500 cotton bales, plus several mills, gins, ferryboats, five miles of railroad tracks and numerous other structures...and the Georgia Railroad's bridge over the Oconee River. The next day, November 20th, General Geary turned his division south, marching hear the Oconee River and generally parallel to the march route of the two other divisions in the 20th Corps. A few miles south of Blue Springs soldiers destroyed Park's Mill (its ruins are now under Lake Oconee). Geary also sent a party across the river to nearby Greensboro to spread a false rumor that General Sherman's entire army was marching east along the Georgia Railroad toward Augusta. By dark Geary's division camped near Denham Tannery northeast of Eatonton.
Blue Springs became known as Swords by 1900, named for local businessman John Buchanan Swords. In 1979 the Oconee River was dammed to form Lake Oconee.
Location. 33° 32.464′ N, 83° 17.148′ W. Marker is in Buckhead, Georgia, in Morgan County. Marker can be reached from Blue Springs Drive half a mile east of Fraction Bottoms Road. Touch for map. Located on river side of the Blue Springs Marina building. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1271 Blue Springs Drive, Buckhead GA 30625, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Swords (approx. 1.3 miles away); The March to the Sea (approx. 1˝ miles away); Park's Mill (approx. 1˝ miles away); Park Home and Site of Park’s Mill (approx. 3˝ miles away); Federal Raid (approx. 4.8 miles away); Buckhead (approx. 5 miles away); Stagecoach Road (approx. 5.1 miles away); Fort Mathews (approx. 5.9 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Buckhead.
Regarding The Oconee River Railroad Bridge. Union Brigadier General John W. Geary’s division of the 20th Corps marched east from Madison on November 19, 1864. It burned an important railroad bridge over the Oconee River and destroyed other properties before turning south the following day.
Categories. • Bridges & Viaducts • Railroads & Streetcars • Waterways & Vessels •
Credits. This page was last revised on January 25, 2018. This page originally submitted on January 25, 2018, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama. This page has been viewed 78 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on January 25, 2018, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama.