Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Old Federal Road in the Neighborhood of Cohutta Springs

The two pieces of Union correspondence, below, mention Old Federal Road, Cohutta Springs, Spring Place, and other towns. Apparently it relates to the fork of the old Federal Road that went into Murray County, Georgia. The other fork continued west from Ramhurst toward Dalton. I'm not sure if this would be Cohutta Springs "west" or "east." I think it would be "west."

Official Records, Series 1, Volume 38, Part 5 (Correspondence, Etc.), 646

Dalton, August 23, 1864.
Major-General Steedman:
I sent out one company yesterday morning eastward to Holly Creek, beyond Spring Place, and another through Ship's Gap to Summerville via Broomtown Valley; the last will not return till to-night. The first company returned last evening, and report a body of 500 rebel cavalry lying on the Westfield turnpike at the foot of the Cohutta Mountain, about twenty miles from here on the road to Ellijay. They are apparently holding that gap for the protection of couriers or other communications between Wheeler and Atlanta. They came there on Sunday from the diretion [sic] of Columbus, having been sent to learn the old Federal road in the neighborhood of Cohutta Springs on Saturday evening, and to proceed in the direction of Ellijay. This body has two companies guarding the ford of Hold's Creek. I do not think they intend to harass the railroad but merely to hold that gap.
Wm. J. Palmer,
Colonel, Commanding Fifteenth Pennsylvania Cavalry.


Headquarters District of the Etowah,
Chattanooga, August 23, 1864.
Col. L. D. Watkins,
      Calhoun, Ga.:

   Send all your mounted force effective for a march by way of Spring Place and Cohutta Springs toward Savannah, on the Hiwassee River. Colonel Palmer sends a detachment from Dalton by way of Spring Place to Columbus; try to communicate with him. He reports 500 rebel cavalry at the foot of Cohutta Mountain on Westfield road, evidently keeping open communication between Wheeler and Atlanta. Try to break up the line and move on same route to the Hiwassee and co-operate with Colonel Palmer.
J. B. Steedman,

The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies
Compiled by Calvin Duvall Cowles
Contributors: United States. War Records Office, United States. Record and Pension Office, United States. Congress. House
Publisher: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1891


Friday, July 29, 2016

Colonel Eli Long, Army of the Cumberland, at Cohutta Springs (west)

Colonel Eli Long came into Cohutta Springs (west) in northern Murray County, Georgia, on February  22, 1864, before the first Battle of Dalton. He was en route to Dalton, Whitfield County, Georgia, and Murray County was a back way into Whitfield County. Long camped at Waterhouse's Mill, near the Conasauga River. Neither the county name nor the place name of Cohutta Springs is ever mentioned in Union Correspondence, and the area probably was not known to the Federals as Cohutta Springs. The post office had suspended delivery of mail to that area during the war, and there probably would be no markers in the vicinity of the mill. Union correspondence always refers to the place by some description, such as "Waterhouse's Mill" or "south of the Connesaga" (River). In his Feb. 1864 reconnaissance, Long received ambiguous orders and had to ask for more information about his mission, due to confusion over the roads in the area. He had been asked to communicate with Cruft at Red Clay, but Red Clay is about twelve miles west of Waterhouse's and cannot be reached directly from the road he is calling the Spring Place and Cleveland Road. Interestingly, in his earlier report, he names the road, but does not yet know the name of the place (Mr. Waterhouse's house). In a later report, he names his campsite of the 22nd as Mr. Waterhouse's house, and calls the road "Spring Place Road."*

This area is not at the mineral springs and resort. It is five miles west of the mineral springs, on modern-day Georgia Highway 225, a mile or so south of the Tennessee state line.

Link to 1863-1865 post with map (drafted 1863-1864; published 1865) showing the area south of the Conasauga River, but not designating Cohutta Springs P.O. The relevant area on this map is the road running from Spring Place directly north toward Benton Pike, just where it intersects a road that runs southeast toward Ellijay. The place name of Cohutta Springs (where the post office was located from 1836 until at least 1865) does not appear on the map. However, east of that area, on a road running parallel to the S.P. and Cleveland Road, is "Cohutta Springs" (Cohutta Springs, east), where the resort and mineral springs would be located. MAP AND DESCRIPTION.


O.R., Series 1, Vol. 32, Pt. 1--Reports [Washington: Government Printing Office, 1891], 423, 469, 472.

Full Citation: The War of the Rebellion: v.1-53 [serial no. 1-111] Formal reports, both Union and Confederate, of the first seizures of United States property in the southern states, and of all military operations in the field, with the correspondence, orders and returns relating specially thereto. 1880-1898. 111v
The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies. Pub. Under the Direction of the ... Secretary of War, United States. Record and Pension Office. U.S. Government Printing Office, 1891. Original from: Pennsylvania State University. Digitized: 6 July 2011. 

------Report No. 3, "Report of Brig. Gen. Charles Cruft, U.S. Army, commanding First Division, Fourth Army Corps."] Hdqrs. First Div., Fourth Army Corps, Blue Springs, Tenn., Mar. 2, 1864, 422-429. [Relevant section: page 423, mentioning Eli Long].

------Report No. 26, "Reports of Col. Eli Long, Fourth Ohio Cavalry, commanding Second Brigade, Second Cavalry Division," 469-474 [Relevant sections (report that mention Burnt Mill, Waterhouse's, Cleveland and Spring Place Road, or the Connesauga): 469]

------Report of Col. Eli Long [Hdqrs. Second Brig., Second Div. Cavalry, near Lee's House, Ga., February 27, 1864], 472.
*Typically these main roads run between two towns and are named, in a broad sense, for both towns; hence, "Spring Place and Cleveland Road." Locally, the people in Cleveland or Charleston, Tennessee, would probably refer to it as "Spring Place Road," while people in Spring Place would refer to it as "Cleveland Road" or "Charleston Road."