On Nov. 15, 1864, after destroying Atlanta and cutting his communications with the North, Maj. Gen. W.T. Sherman, USA, began his destructive Campaign for Savannah - the March to the Sea. He divided his army [US] into two wings. The Left Wing (14th and 20th Corps), Maj. Gen. H.W. Slocum, USA, moved east from Atlanta in two columns which converged on Milledgeville, crossed the Ogeechee River near Louisville, then marched toward Savannah by two routes: the 14th Corps (Davis) on the old road near the Savannah River (Ga 24), the 20th Corps (Williams) via Springfield. Both corps approached Savannah via Monteith. Gen. Sherman accompanied the Left Wing as far as Sandersville.
The Right Wing (15th and 17th Corps), Maj. Gen. O.O. Howard, USA, marched south via Jackson and Gordon and crossed the Oconee River at Ball's Ferry. The 15th Corps (Osterhaus) marched on roads west of the Ogeechee River. The 17th Corps, Maj. Gen. F.P. Blair, USA, which has been joined by Gen. Sherman and his staff at Tennille, moved on roads south of the railroad and Williamson Swamp Creek until opposite Burton (Midville), Station 9 1/2, CRR. On the 30th, the 17th Corps crossed the Ogeechee River and Gen. Sherman's headquarters were established here in Burton. That night, the depot and other railway facilities were completely destroyed.
Next morning, the 17th Corps moved east on the present Ga 17, which it followed to Savannah. That night, it camped at Herndon Station 9, CRR, after stripping the country of provisions.