To preserve and enhance the downtown area as the heart of
East Point, communicating a sense of place, community pride and heritage, while providing for a successful business and
Downtown Flashback Feature
Each month, EPMSA will dig through the East Point Historical Society's archives to provide you with that month's "Flashback Feature". Each feature will highlight a photo and/or article from East Point's vibrant history. The photos/articles will give you a brief look at East Point back then . . . more information about East Point's history is available at the East Point Historical Society located at 1685 Norman Berry Drive, East Point, GA 30344. You can contact them at (404) 767-4656 or visit www.eastpoinths.org. All "Flashback Features" will be archived on the website and can be accessed at any time.
American Civil War: The Role of East Point
During the American Civil War, East Point played a key role in the attempt to defend the city of Atlanta. Gen. Sherman’s Atlanta Campaign moved into the Atlanta area and began with three hard fought battles in July 1864---the Battle of Peachtree Creek (Buckhead area), the Battle of Atlanta (East Atlanta area), and the Battle of Ezra Church (Martin Luther King Jr. Drive). The Confederates were unsuccessful against the U.S. forces during these three battles, suffering over 30,000 casualties in killed and wounded of the 70,000 defending Atlanta. Union forces suffered half the casualties, but had a larger force of almost 105,000.
Despite these successes, the Union troops still could not lay claim to Atlanta, so Sherman decided to attempt to break the railroads south of the city. He sent his third army, under the command of Maj. Gen. Schofield, to break the railroads at East Point and cut off the Confederate supplies to the City of Atlanta. During the first week of August, the Battle of Utoy Creek was fought along Beecher and Cascade roads in southwest Atlanta. Union forces were unsuccessful in their attack, losing 850 killed and over 1,000 wounded.
From August 7th through 26th, Union forces became involved in siege warfare in the East Point area. They slowly inched their way with several smaller engagements being fought along Campbellton Road, Connally’s Mill, and south to Washington Road and a cavalry engagement along Camp Creek near the Redwine Plantation and Redwine Road. Union troops were entrenched to the Atlanta Christian College along Ben Hill Road near Greenbriar Mall. Confederate defenses ran along Delowe Drive and southwest along Kimmeridge through the Woodward Academy in College Park across the Hartsfield Airport to Lee’s Mill adjacent to GA Hwy 85 close to the Farmers Market in Forest Park. This long and painful siege warfare was accompanied by an artillery barrage of Atlanta to attempt to force the city to yield. On August 26, 1864, the U.S. forces moved on the railroads at Shadner Church (Union City). East Point was the lifeline to protect the critical railroads and keep supplies moving into the city. The railroads were cut and the U.S. forces were eventually successful in taking Atlanta on September 2, 1864, following the Battle of Jonesboro.
—Major Perry Bennett, Command Historian