This week marks the anniversary of the Battle of Atlanta 148 years ago. It is credited as being a turning point in the War Between the States, giving renewed fervor to the Union soldiers, defeating the Confederates in fact and in morale, destroying supply routes crucial to the survival and success of the Southern soldiers. Many believe it is also the final push that won Abraham Lincoln his second term as president in 1864. How different would our nation’s history have been had he lost that election?
The Civil War marks a controversial time in our Nation’s and in our State’s history. Technically, Georgia, a member of the Confederate States of America (CSA) was on the losing team. However, that loss has certainly wound up playing to the advantage of her citizens… eventually.
The organizers of B*ATL 2012 have carefully organized an impressive variety of events around the city that capture the various perspectives of true events as well as emphasizing the role those events played in shaping Georgia’s future. The end of the Civil War did not immediately end slavery in Georgia, nor did the eventual end of slavery mean that all of her citizens lived suddenly amicably in delightful harmony. B*ATL offers interviews and tours with volunteers offering a unique, historical perspective on life as an African American in Georgia during the battle and Georgia’s role in Civil Rights since then.
Festivities honoring this pivotal event in national history began this past weekend and continue through July 22. You may notice, especially in southeast Atlanta where many of the events are held, that there will be an increase in out-of-state license plates as people travel to participate in events ranging from cemetery tours to a 5K road race. You can also meet authors and interact with historical reenactors demonstrating everything from everyday living, spinning yarn, and even the gruesome work of battle field medicine.
These photos are representative of the variety of events you can expect around town this week: