After Johnston retreated to Allatoona Pass on May 19–20, Sherman decided that he would most likely pay dearly for attacking Johnston there, so he determined to move around Johnston's left flank and steal a march toward Dallas. Johnston anticipated Sherman's move and shifted his army into Sherman's path, centering a new line at New Hope Church. Sherman mistakenly surmised that Johnston had a token force and ordered Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker's XX Corps to attack. Advancing with his three divisions in parallel routes, Hooker pushed the Confederates back for three miles, before coming to Johnston's main line.
Difficult terrain prevented Hooker from coordinating his corps' attacks effectively, causing his men to suffer severe casualties, especially from canister and shrapnel. On May 26, both sides entrenched, and skirmishing continued throughout the day. At the end of the battle, Confederate Captain Samuel T. Foster reported that 703 Union soldiers had been killed, as well as 350 had been taken prisoner. The next day, the Union army concentrated its efforts in this area towards the northern end of the Confederate line, resulting in the Battle of Pickett's Mill.
The New Hope Church battlefield is today privately owned and located at the intersection of Bobo Road and Hwy 381 (Dallas Acworth Hwy) in Dallas.