Dallas – May 24, 1864
Union Units Involved: 2nd Cavalry Division, Army of the Cumberland.
Confederate Units Involved: Bate’s Division, Hardee’s Corps.
On May 24, Maj. Gen. William T. Sherman, in overall command of the Union forces in Georgia, learned through a captured despatch that his Confederate counterpart, Gen. Joseph E. Johnston, was forming a defensive line along the south side of Pumpkinvine Creek from Dallas to Allatoona, and at once began the disposition of his forces to either give Johnston battle or force him from his position. After a series of engagements, Johnston’s army fell back from the vicinity of Cassville-Kingston, first to Allatoona Pass and then to the Dallas area and entrenched. Johnston’s line covered the roads leading from Dallas to Acworth, Marietta and Atlanta, his center being near New Hope Church, 4 miles north east of Dallas. It occupied the wooded summits of a number of ridges, with open valleys in front, over which the Union forces would have to advance to attack. The natural position was one capable of easy defense and every available minute was spent in strengthening it by formidable intrenchments.
Sherman’s army tested the Confederate line while entrenching themselves. On this date the Union division, commanded by Brig.-Gen. Kenner Garrard, was encamped on Pumpkin Vine creek, about 3 miles from Dallas. In a reconnaissance toward the town he was attacked by Bate’s division of Hardee’s corps, but after a sharp skirmish, the Confederates retreated toward Dallas.
No casualties reported.
Source: Rigdon, John. Editor. All the Battles of the Civil War. 2011 Eastern Digital Resources.5705 Sullivan Point Drive. Powder Springs, GA. 30127.