Glenwood Avenue: Spot where Confederate division commander Major General William H. T. Walker was mortally wounded while scouting Federal forces, just before the opening attack in the Battle of Atlanta.
What to See: As the four divisions that comprised Hardee's Corps prepared to launch their delayed assault against the Yankee Army of the Tennessee, a Federal infantryman fatally shot Confederate division commander Major General William H. T. Walker, who was reconnoitering north of Terry's Mill Pond. The civilian guide who accompanied Walker on the final stretch of Hardee's night march and several Confederate veterans provided differing accounts of when and where the general was mortally wounded. Walker was one of the first casualties of the battle and his troops were among the first to make contact with Yankees.
Walker was an Augusta, Georgia, plantation owner and a veteran of the regular US army who resigned his commission before South Carolina left the Union. The upright cannon memorial dedicated to Walker on July 22, 1902, the 38th anniversary of his death and the Battle of Atlanta, honored the general's heroism. The unveiling ceremony, like many other Civil War monument dedications at the turn of the century, downplayed past hostilities and slaveholder ideology while celebrating national reconciliation.
The Walker Monument unveiling was notable for a turnout of several thousand people, including retired Federal General Oliver Otis Howard. Howard, who had known Walker at West Point and succeeded James B. McPherson as commander of the Army of the Tennessee five days after the Battle of Atlanta. Howard's post-war career included a stint as Commissioner of the Freedmen's Bureau, the Federal agency established to help former slaves make the transition to freedom.
Howard also had a pivotal role in launching the university named in his honor in Washington, DC. At the Walker monument's dedication, the event's main speaker lauded Howard's attendance and asked, "What stronger evidence could be given that all sectional strife is ended, and that we are now united as one people, no matter what the demagogues may say?"