Decatur, a village of Georgia, capital of Be Kalb county, on the Georgia railroad, 5 m. E. of Atlanta; pop. in 1870, 401. It is noted for its beautiful situation and healthy climate, and is the seat of two seminaries. About 6 m. E. of the village is Stone mountain, an isolated granite rock, nearly 2,200 ft. high. A battle was fought here, July 20, 1864, between a portion of Sherman's army, under Gen. Thomas, and the confederates under Gen. Hood, who had just succeeded Gen. J. E. Johnston in the command of the confederate forces in the west. In Sherman's advance toward Atlanta, Thomas and Schofield had reached Decatur. Hood undertook to overthrow this portion while it was separated from the remainder of the Union army. The attack was partially successful on the Union left, where the confederates gained some ground; but on the right, held by Hooker, where the action was most severe, the assailants were repulsed, and at dusk the confederates abandoned the attempt, leaving their dead and many of their wounded on the field. The Union loss was 1,500 in killed and wounded.
The confederates left on the field 500 dead and 1,000 severely wounded, this being only a part of their entire loss, which Gen. Sherman estimated at not less than 5,000.
Decatur, a city and the capital of Macon co., Illinois, on the right bank of the Sangamon river, about 40 m. E. of Springfield; pop. in 1870, 7,161. The Illinois Central, the Toledo, Wabash, and Western, the Decatur, Sullivan, and Mattoon, the Monticello, and the Pekin, Lincoln, and Decatur railroads centre here. It is situated in a productive agricultural region, is a place of considerable trade, and contains a number of handsome buildings, including the court house. There are about 15 churches of different denominations; 24 public schools, with an average attendance of 1,376 pupils; and one daily and four weekly newspapers. There is a large rolling mill.