Illinois veterans erected this memorial 50 years after the battle.
The Battle of Kennesaw Mountain on July 27, 1864, caused the Union Army estimated 3,000 killed, wounded, or missing soldiers. The Confederates suffered fewer than 1,000 casualties. After the war, the dead of both sides were reburied in separate cemeteries in nearby Marietta.
Here at the Dead Angle, Col. Daniel McCook's brigade lost 397 men, most of them from Illinois. In 1899, survivors of McCook's brigade bought 60 acres of land here and donated it to the state of Illinois to build a state funded monument. Union veterans dedicated it on July 27, 1914—the battle's 50th anniversary.
From this beginning, Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park has grown to nearly 3,000 acres of the ground the two great armies struggled over so long ago.
"Then out spoke brave Horatius,
The Captain of the gate:
To every man upon this earth
Death cometh soon or late,
And how can man die better
Than facing fearful odds,
For the ashes of his fathers
And the temples of his gods."
Col. Daniel Cook, Jr.(left) loudly recited the popular poem "Horatius Speech" to his troops before leading them into battle where he was mortally wounded.
For years after his death, veterans of his brigade held reunions in honor of "Colonel Dan," as he was known to his men.