Battle of Franklin

Battle of Franklin (HM1YE1)

Location: Franklin, TN 37064 Williamson County
Country: United States of America

N 35° 54.342', W 86° 51.494'

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Inscription

Into the Twilight

Visibility was always a critical factor in Civil War battles. Officers and enlisted men needed clear lines of sight to know where to move, when to stay in place, and in which direction to shoot. At the Battle of Franklin, two important factors nearly eliminated the combatants' ability to see: tranquil air and the approach of night.

November 30, 1864, was almost balmy here, with temperatures near 60 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees C) and with almost no wind. Desperate to break through the Federal lines straddling the Columbia Turnpike, Confederate Gen. John Bell Hood sent his 20,000 men forward at 4 pm. It took his brigades more than twenty minutes to cross the valley floor, and sunset came at 4:30, just as his first wave struck the Union center.


The initial volleys enveloped the line in thick, billowing smoke, and visibility immediately fell to a few feet. Adding to the chaos, many of the Confederate officers were killed or wounded in the first thirty minutes of direct contact, leading to considerable confusion. The fight continued well into the darkness, until about 9:00, and produced almost 10,000 killed, wounded, missing, and captured—a rate of almost one every two seconds. Much of the combat was hand-to-hand, a relatively rare event in an age of rifled muskets and long-range artillery.

After
the battle, many Confederate survivors were confused by their massive losses, believing that they were winning the contest until the very end. Union Gen. Jacob D. Cox suspected that his opponents did not realize how costly their frontal assault had become because they could not see clearly enough to realize the extent of the carnage.
Details
HM NumberHM1YE1
Series This marker is part of the Tennessee: Tennessee Civil War Trails series
Tags
Placed ByTennessee Civil War Trails
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Friday, May 26th, 2017 at 4:50pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)16S E 512792 N 3973498
Decimal Degrees35.90570000, -86.85823333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 35° 54.342', W 86° 51.494'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds35° 54' 20.52" N, 86° 51' 29.64" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)615
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling West
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 1345 Eastern Flank Cir, Franklin TN 37064, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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