Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Cannonballs, provisions and northwest

- Stumbling upon a website with accounts of Civil War battles fought around the area I work in northwest Atlanta, there is the story of General Joseph Johnston, then commander of the Confederate Army, and his firing for being ineffective in July 1864. It tells of a group erecting a sentimental monument in the form of 55 stacked Confederate cannonballs at 950 West Marietta Street, the former site of the Dexter Niles house, in which the relief of command took place. After work, I decide to find it and program the address into my GPS. Sure enough - there it is, inside a gate that houses the Mead Paper Company's fleet of shipping containers.

- A couple of miles away is the White Provision Company, on Howell Mill Road, a former meat packing plant, ca. 1910. It morphed into a graffiti painted old building full of artistic urban loft dwellers, to a space that now encompasses apartments, offices and retail businesses. (I read with relief that some of the loft dwelling artists remain.) Thankfully no one thought to tear this building down in lieu of a new glass building so commonly seen around now.

- When I was looking for a job the last time, I resisted working this far from home (20 miles.) But it has been a pleasure to seek out the rich history of northwest Atlanta and I expect to search out more monuments and history soon. Watch for more photos. :)


TALON said...

How neat to discover local history especially an area that is so rich in it.

I love when old buildings get new leases on life (pun included - lol).

Lynn said...

Talon -

I think the 55 cannonballs stood for Johnston's regiment - the 55th artillery from Tennessee. My photo came out a little tilted - I had the lens stuck though the chain link fence. :)

Me, too! lol!

LL Cool Joe said...

It's amazing how much history there is right on our doorsteps that we don't really notice or appreciate. Or maybe that's just me.

G. B. Miller said...

Interesting that a Confederate general would fired for being ineffective.

From what I've read throughout the years, the Confederates basically had good military leadership, compared the largely incompetent Union side (who had a few good ones sprinkled in, just to save face).

Lynn said...

Joe -

I find history fascinating. We have those historical markers over here and I like to stop and read them. That cannonball monument used to stand in front of a house - interesting that the area around it is completely industrial now. It is difficult to imagine it as a residential area.

Snaggle Tooth said...

Imagine that- Finding a lost treasure inside a paper company grounds, n working for a printer! How connected is that?
In Metro-west of Boston there are now alot of those converted to condo spots older buildings. New isin't always better. I think that's pretty architecture.

Great aspiration to learn more about your surrounding area- I heard from Ellen who moved there from here, Atlanta is a very large zone containing many different types of areas to explore. She's a Caterer n drives all over. (the Secret Garden)

Riot Kitty said...

You have so much interesting local history! And you are particularly good at finding it.

Lynn said...

G -

Your comment didn't show up until this morning. Something was going on with Blogger yesterday.

According to the reports I read, Gen. Johnston was overly cautious during the Battle of Atlanta and tried to preserve his army by constantly retreating. This allowed the city to be taken by Union soldiers. The president of the confederacy, Jefferson Davis, relieved him of command because of that, although the city was already lost. It is thought that Davis's decision to remove Johnston was one of the most controversial of the war.

Snaggle -

I keep calling Mead a paper company, but this division makes containers. At any rate - pretty cool to find it nestled among the 18 wheelers. :)

I will look out for The Secret Garden caterers - I'm going to a catered event tonight near that cannonball monument in a facility that used to be a mill.

Riot Kitty -

I know - it is fun to seek it out, too. :)

Jannie Funster said...

I remember in bangor Me, there were hundreds, if not thousands of that kind of red brick buildings. That was 24 years ago, I wonder what they've done with them.


Lynn said...

Jannie -

I hope they are in use still. I like the preservation of old buildings.