Atlanta has always loomed large in my family’s personal accounting of its history.
We aren’t Georgians, as far as I know, at least not on any branches of the family tree close enough to crane your neck and see. I didn’t know the word Atlanta when I was three because this green, rolling state, with its peanuts and its peaches, had anything to do with us or our shared, Carolinian past.
I knew because, a century and a half before I moved into a leafy apartment on its outskirts, General William Tecumseh Sherman was here.
I grew up in the Deep South, where Sherman’s name was not said — it was spit. The split of the country still runs deep and fever-hot in the blood of its Southern inhabitants, as does the smoldering of Atlanta. Continue reading