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The Union's Army of the Tennessee captures Atlanta, boosting northern morale and Republican prospects

William Tecumseh Sherman, detail
Relentless pressure from General Sherman's Army of the Tennessee over the previous weeks, with very heavy Confederate losses, had made Confederate General John Bell Hood's defence of Atlanta impossible.  He evacuated the city on the evening of September 1, 1864, burning military installations and supplies.  Union forces completed the capture the next day, giving not only a significant victory but a massive boost to Northern morale and President Lincoln's prospects of re-election in November.  (By John Osborne) 
Source Citation: 
Charles P. Roland, An American Iliad: The Story of the Civil War (New York: McGraw Hill, 2002), 185.