Ready for Battle – Events mark 150th Anniversary

Posted by Dan Whisenhunt July 19, 2014

This weekend is jam-packed full of events to commemorate the 150th Anniversary of the Battle of Atlanta. History lover and former Decatur High School teacher Chris Billingsley sent us these photos on Friday, July 18.  The actual anniversary is July 22.

He says, “Gilliam Park. Battle encampment. I was told all would be ready (today). Rain or shine.”


He also sent us this photo of a grave in he Clay Family Cemetery.


Earl Williamson, a Kirkwood resident, says there will be tours of the Clay Cemetery all day.

He said, “Tours will be held every other hour starting at 9 am and includes tours at 11 am, 1 pm, and 3 pm. The cemetery is located at 31 Clifton Street NE.”

Williamson also shared some new information about the cemetery:

For those who don’t think historical cemeteries can be exciting … draft results of Monday’s ground penetrating radar (GPR) include:

– 25 suspected graves confirmed
– 77 new graves identified
– 2 steel coffins discovered
– Much different distribution of burials than than thought
– More exhumations than previously suspected
– Sadly very high number of child burials, confirming once again the very high value of childhood immunization

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Dan Whisenhunt is editor and publisher of

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  • Chris Billingsley

    Thanks Dan, especially the plug for childhood immunization. I would bet that beyond those that were killed during the fighting on July 22 (several thousand) even more died from infections from surgery. Today we take for granted procedures and medicines that quickly cure ailments that killed most people in the 1860s. But one thing the men and women of 1864 had that I think many of us lack today is unusual courage and a strong belief in God, country and cause.
    There are many entertainment choices people in Decatur and the surrounding communities can make over the weekend but I hope they chose the one that will teach the virtues of courage, patriotism, honor and valor.

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