ExploreSouthernHistory.com - Cannonball House in Macon, Georgia
ExploreSouthernHistory.com - Cannonball House in Macon, Georgia
Cannonball House
The "Cannonball House" is a noted landmark in
Macon, Georgia. The beautiful old structure was
struck by artillery fire during the Battle of Dunlap Hill.
Copyright 2010 by Dale Cox
All rights reserved.
Cannonball House
A Union cannonball crashed
into the house during the
Battle of Dunlap Hill on July
30, 1864.
Cannon made in Macon
The bronze cannon on display
in front of the Cannonball
House was manufactured at
the Macon Arsenal in 1864.
Greek Revival Architecture
The Cannonball House is an
outstanding example of Greek
Revivial architecture and was
built in 1853.
Cannonball House & Confederate Museum - Macon, Georgia
Historic Home of Judge Asa Holt
Judge Asa Holt
The Cannonball House was
owned by Judge Asa Holt
during the War Between the
States and still bears scars of
the conflict.
The historic Cannonball House is beautiful
example of Greek Revival architecture that
overlooks Mulberry Street in
Macon, Georgia.

Now a Confederate museum, the structure
earned its name when it was damaged by
Union cannon fire during the Battle of Dunlap
Hill (sometimes called Dunlap's Farm) on
July 30, 1864. A cannonball fired from across
the Ocmulgee River struck the left middle
column of the house and then crashed into
the house, landing with a thud on the hall

The damage resulted from intentional firing
on Southern civilians by Northern troops led
by Brigadier General George Stoneman.

Having convinced General William
Tecumseh Sherman to allow him to attempt
a daring raid to free the tens of thousands of
Union prisoners of war being held at Camp
Oglethorpe in Macon and Camp Sumter at
Andersonville, Stoneman drove south down
the Atlanta railroad during the last week of
July, 1864. The raiders did extensive damage
to the railroad itself, as well as to homes and
farms along their route. Livestock and fodder
were stolen, barns were burned and families
were generally terrorized and stripped of their

Stoneman arrived outside of Macon on July
30, 1864, to find the city's Confederate forces
swarming and ready for him. As Union men
charged forward and captured an artillery
position at the Dunlap House atop Dunlap
Hill (now a part of
Ocmulgee National
Monument), Confederate regulars, militia,
volunteers and artillerymen flooded across
the Ocmulgee River to oppose him.

Finding themselves under heavy artillery fire
from Confederate cannon posted at old Fort
Hawkins, Stoneman quickly realized that he
would not be taking Macon. According to their
reports, however, the Union officers decided
to send a sample of war to the citizens of
Macon by firing their cannon into the
residential areas of the city. The decision led
to cannonballs being fired at the defenseless
woman and children of Macon.

Among the targets struck by the Union fire
was the home of Judge Asa Holt, now known
as the Cannonball House. Built in 1853, the
house was one of a number of beautiful
homes tining Mulberry Street on the heights
overlooking downtown Macon.

Eyewitnesses reported that a cannonball hit
the sand sidewalk in front of the house, then
bounced up and through the column and into
the home itself. The traces of its impact can
still be seen today in the repaired column,
patched parlor plaster and the large dent it
left in the hall floor.
Although Stoneman and many of his men
were captured a few days later at the
Battle of
Sunshine Church, things went from bad to
worse for the Holt family.

Fleeing Macon to the security of their farm in
Jefferson County, they found themselves
right in the path of Sherman's March to the
Sea. Union soldiers shot down their
livestock, burned their barns, stole their
goods and food and even destroyed the
bucket they used to draw water from the well.

Judge Holt himself was hanged from a tree
in a torture devised by Union soldiers to force
him to reveal the location of any hidden gold.
This was repeated three times until, revived
by servants, he was barely alive.

Now owned by the Sidney Lanier Chapter of
the United Daughters of the Confederacy
(UDC), the Cannonball House is located at
856 Mulberry Street in Macon. Guided tours
are offered every half-hour Monday - Saturday
beginning at 10 a.m. and with the last tour
starting at 4 p.m. The cost of admission is $6
for adults, $5 for age 65+ or military with an
ID, $2 for students (college with ID). Children
under 6 are admitted free. Please visit them
www.cannonballhouse.org for more.
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