Presenters

Jeremy WolfeFollow

Academic department under which the project should be listed

RCHSS - Geography & Anthropology

Faculty Sponsor Name

Dr. Terry G. Powis

Abstract (300 words maximum)

While not well known in the list of battles during the Atlanta Campaign late in the American Civil War, it is marked as an overwhelming Confederate victory in the face of looming defeat in the war itself. With the Union suffering nearly two thousand casualties, the tactics and strategies used by the Confederate army no doubt aided in their victory. During the battle, Union soldiers were drawn into a ravine where Confederate soldiers could easily fire down on them. The Union men followed the ravine up into a flat area where they were then fired on again with accurate rifle and cannon fire. This research will review the areas of concentrated fire by Confederate troops and whether these occurred out of circumstance, or if they had been planned in advanced as pre-designated areas of fire, otherwise known as “kill zones”. The archaeological data from previous research will be reviewed to determine concentrations of Confederate fired ammunition as well as lines of entrenchment to gather evidence of premeditated fields of fire to create a kill zone. This research will also review historical texts and accounts to determine if this was intentional and whether this strategy was used elsewhere in battles during the Civil War. It will also review that if these areas of concentrated fire were only by coincidence, then what were the mistakes made by the Union that lead to such a high number of casualties when they heavily outnumbered Confederate forces.

Project Type

Poster

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Kill Zones and Their Use During the American Civil War: An Archaeological Review of The Battle of Pickett’s Mill

While not well known in the list of battles during the Atlanta Campaign late in the American Civil War, it is marked as an overwhelming Confederate victory in the face of looming defeat in the war itself. With the Union suffering nearly two thousand casualties, the tactics and strategies used by the Confederate army no doubt aided in their victory. During the battle, Union soldiers were drawn into a ravine where Confederate soldiers could easily fire down on them. The Union men followed the ravine up into a flat area where they were then fired on again with accurate rifle and cannon fire. This research will review the areas of concentrated fire by Confederate troops and whether these occurred out of circumstance, or if they had been planned in advanced as pre-designated areas of fire, otherwise known as “kill zones”. The archaeological data from previous research will be reviewed to determine concentrations of Confederate fired ammunition as well as lines of entrenchment to gather evidence of premeditated fields of fire to create a kill zone. This research will also review historical texts and accounts to determine if this was intentional and whether this strategy was used elsewhere in battles during the Civil War. It will also review that if these areas of concentrated fire were only by coincidence, then what were the mistakes made by the Union that lead to such a high number of casualties when they heavily outnumbered Confederate forces.