Commerce and Conflict in Civil War Atlanta
Wendy Hamand Venet
University of Georgia Press
Under the watch of the business community, Atlanta grew from a railroad terminus to an essential production hub for the Confederacy and a tempting target for the Union armies. The city grew faster than even its greatest boosters could have imagined, but war, slavery, and economic pressures left many in dire situations. Then, after having been devastated by fire, illness, and economic collapse at the end of the war, Atlanta rebounded.
Atlanta’s business community had taken a bet on secession – believing it would bring the most economic benefit to them and to the city. That bet is the story of A Changing Wind – it would change the lives of men and women, blacks and whites, parents and children in ways that no one could have expected.
Was it a good bet or a disastrous one? The answer is hardly simple. A Changing Wind is a rich and complicated story of the people who determined the rise, fall, and ultimate rebirth of this vibrant and changing metropolis.