Gist's Salient at Kennesaw Mountain

Chattahooch33

Sergeant Major
Annual Winner
Joined
Oct 4, 2013
Location
Cobb's Legion Country - Bowdon, Ga.
Today I took a quick trip to Kennesaw to locate what is known as Gist's Salient. In Earl Hess' Kennesaw Mountain he has incredible hand drawn maps showing the fortifications and works on the battlefield and has an entire chapter describing them. Unfortunately he does not mention most of them in the actual book text. We know Gist was not a recipient of a federal assault as he was just south of Pigeon Hill and a good ways north of Cheatham Hill. His exact position is just north of Nose's Creek. The elaborate works are still amazingly preserved and obvious to the hiker. Unfortunately photos never do them justice.

I will try to show using Hess' drawing where I took the pictures.


I also need to find a way to shrink my pictures. It takes them forever to load.






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The numbers coincide with the pictures






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#1. Picture one is the northeast quadrant of the salient looking East.
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#2: This one is from the trail but if you look right in the middle there is a doe.

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#3: From the trail looking southwest.


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#4: Traverses within the works. Note the stony ground. It must have been hot and hard work.

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5: The point of the salient. About 50 yards to the right are rifle pits for the skirmishers which I believe were either the 8th Battalion, Georgia Inf. or the 46th Georgia.

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#6: New signs being put up all through the park. I noticed 3 more just added in the past month.

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#7: Southern stretch of the salient.

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#10: I am 6'4" and you can see the outside of the works here are probably 8'-9' high here. This is the southern part of the salient leading into artillery emplacements that I could not access to photo.

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This photo is further down the slope at Nose's Creek. I don't know what that is being marked by the flags and tarps.

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This is from Nose's Creek looking up at Bate's works. Just to the left center you can see the first little "fort" that guards the ravine. I have pictures of this area here:
http://civilwartalk.com/threads/ken...pigeon-hill-to-dallas-hwy.101155/#post-910688


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Here is a Maprika screen shot. Just to the right of the blue dot you can see the salient.








Sorry for some of the fuzziness in the pictures and the purple spots. My iPhone5 is on its last leg and I'm stubbornly holding out for the iPhone6 next month.
 

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AUG

Major
Retired Moderator
Joined
Nov 20, 2012
Location
Texas
Great post! I own two of Hess' trilogy on fortifications in the eastern theater, Field Armies and Fortifications and Trench Warfare Under Grant and Lee, and I do love those maps. I am thinking Hess must be working on a study of fortifications in the western and southern theaters.
 

Joe Walker

Private
Joined
Mar 6, 2013
No is no such thing as "Cheatham Hill". It is the dead angle at the southern most end of Kennesaw Mt. Defended by Cheatham's Div and others. The term "Cheatham's Hill" is a National Park contrivance.
 

CheathamHill

First Sergeant
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Joined
Oct 4, 2013
No is no such thing as "Cheatham Hill". It is the dead angle at the southern most end of Kennesaw Mt. Defended by Cheatham's Div and others. The term "Cheatham's Hill" is a National Park contrivance.

You are partly and mostly incorrect. It WAS referred to as the 'Dead Angle' by many but also referred to Cheatham's Hill within a generation.
Though initially just referred to as 'Kenesaw' 'Kennesaw' or 'Kenessaw' it then evolved to Harker's Assault/Hill, McCook's Charge/Hill, Kennesaw Knoll, 'Dead Angle', 'Vaughn's Ridge' and so forth (I have accounts of ALL of these prior to 1890) and eventually 'settled' as Gen. Cheatham's Hill then Cheatham's Hill then Cheatham Hill.
It was known as Cheatham's Hill in southern papers during the planning stages of the monument dedication and 50th Battle Anniv. in 1914 and has de-volved to Cheatham Hill over time. It was never a park contrivance. It was known as such before ' Dan McCook's Brigade' foundation bought the land (even referred to as such before the land was explored by various members before their 1898 purchase), before the gov.t purchased the surrounding land, before the gov.t purchased THAT land and CERTAINLY before the CCC got there to build the trail systems and do their "CCC" thing at Camp Brumby in the 30's under NPS supervision. Will be happy to supply accounts if needed.
 

nitrofd

Retired User
Joined
Jan 20, 2013
Location
north central florida
You are partly and mostly incorrect. It WAS referred to as the 'Dead Angle' by many but also referred to Cheatham's Hill within a generation.
Though initially just referred to as 'Kenesaw' 'Kennesaw' or 'Kenessaw' it then evolved to Harker's Assault/Hill, McCook's Charge/Hill, Kennesaw Knoll, 'Dead Angle', 'Vaughn's Ridge' and so forth (I have accounts of ALL of these prior to 1890) and eventually 'settled' as Gen. Cheatham's Hill then Cheatham's Hill then Cheatham Hill.
It was known as Cheatham's Hill in southern papers during the planning stages of the monument dedication and 50th Battle Anniv. in 1914 and has de-volved to Cheatham Hill over time. It was never a park contrivance. It was known as such before ' Dan McCook's Brigade' foundation bought the land (even referred to as such before the land was explored by various members before their 1898 purchase), before the gov.t purchased the surrounding land, before the gov.t purchased THAT land and CERTAINLY before the CCC got there to build the trail systems and do their "CCC" thing at Camp Brumby in the 30's under NPS supervision. Will be happy to supply accounts if needed.
Good post
 

28thNewYork

First Sergeant
Silver Patron
Joined
Feb 21, 2014
Location
Atlanta
Great post and great photos. There's a new (2014) Kennesaw book,The Battle of Kennesaw Mountain by Vermilya. He makes no mention of Gist. A shame since the salient earthworks are so very prominent.
 

rickvox79

First Sergeant
Joined
Jan 27, 2011
Location
Pace, FL
Today I took a quick trip to Kennesaw to locate what is known as Gist's Salient. In Earl Hess' Kennesaw Mountain he has incredible hand drawn maps showing the fortifications and works on the battlefield and has an entire chapter describing them. Unfortunately he does not mention most of them in the actual book text. We know Gist was not a recipient of a federal assault as he was just south of Pigeon Hill and a good ways north of Cheatham Hill. His exact position is just north of Nose's Creek. The elaborate works are still amazingly preserved and obvious to the hiker. Unfortunately photos never do them justice.

I will try to show using Hess' drawing where I took the pictures.


I also need to find a way to shrink my pictures. It takes them forever to load.



Sorry for some of the fuzziness in the pictures and the purple spots. My iPhone5 is on its last leg and I'm stubbornly holding out for the iPhone6 next month.


How different is the tree cover now compared to what it was then? Probably not an easy question to answer without pictures from the time, just curious how much it has overgrown or how different it looks now compared to 1864.
 

CheathamHill

First Sergeant
Annual Winner
Joined
Oct 4, 2013
How different is the tree cover now compared to what it was then? Probably not an easy question to answer without pictures from the time, just curious how much it has overgrown or how different it looks now compared to 1864.

Though still somewhat wooded at the time, most trees would've been cleared for abatis, breastworks, trench lines and of course, fields of fire. There were still plenty of trees however, enough so that saw mills in the area began refusing trees from the Kennesaw area because the amount of spent lead contained in the trees were jamming and breaking the equipment for years afterwards...
 

rickvox79

First Sergeant
Joined
Jan 27, 2011
Location
Pace, FL
Though still somewhat wooded at the time, most trees would've been cleared for abatis, breastworks, trench lines and of course, fields of fire. There were still plenty of trees however, enough so that saw mills in the area began refusing trees from the Kennesaw area because the amount of spent lead contained in the trees were jamming and breaking the equipment for years afterwards...

Wow thanks CheathamHill nice story about the sawmills refusing trees. Hopefully I can make it up there one day soon.
 

CheathamHill

First Sergeant
Annual Winner
Joined
Oct 4, 2013
Will be well worth your time and visit. It is truly a great park and much bigger than you would expect that covers several miles of protected battlefields, trenches, homesites etc
 
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