In November 1864, sixty-two thousand Union forces readied themselves to depart from Atlanta.Under the command of William Tecumseh Sherman, these soldiers would engage in the most brutal, ruthless, devastating and effective military campaign of the Civil War, and possibly of history.
Their mission was to cut a path across Georgia of complete destruction and beat the southern forces and spirit into submission of the war.Sherman’s march to the sea would be the turning point of the Civil War that would cause the South to surrender and leave fertile ground for reconstruction. Sherman had a simple plan; he set out to destroy anything the Confederates could use to aid them in their rebellion.This included farms, windmills, railroads and bridges.A favorite way of destroying railways among the troops was to use a ;Sherman Necktie.;The men would take apart a section of railroad track, the ties would be piled up and burned while the rails were heated in the fire until they glowed red hot and then would be wrapped around tree trunks (Kennedy).
Sherman gave his troops orders to “forage liberally on the country side,” (Miers, 214).The soldiers would feed themselves off grain and crop that the looted from fields, but the men also resorted to plundering homes and villages.Residents of towns in line for the march to sweep through often hid their valuables, foods and women, but more times than not, the effort was in vain.Sherman had ordered not to enter the homes of civilians along the way but the men didn’t seem to care and the commanding officers did little, if anything, to stop it.Since the March would be cut off from supply lines in order to move faster and be more mobile, communication was cut.
This left very many people in Washington worried about what was happening in the South.The only information received about the March came from Confederate sources (Miers, 400) and damage report…