Cast of Characters
Robert Anderson (1805-1871), a major at the beginning of the Civil War, was the commanding officer of Fort Sumter when it was attacked.
John Albion Andrew (1818-1867) was the 25th governor of Massachusetts and served from 1861 to 1866. He was a guiding force behind the creation of some of the first African American units in the United States Army, including the famed 54th Massachusetts Infantry.
George Ashmun (1804-1870) was a former U.S. Representative from Massachusetts, 1845-1851, who served with Lincoln in the House. He led the delegation that told Lincoln of his nomination as president, and in 1865 he will serve as one of the four civilian pallbearers at Lincoln’s funeral. Ashmun was also well-known by Secretary of War Seward who, at an April 12, 1861, cabinet meeting, had suggested sending someone to Canada “to keep political feelings right” and recommended Ashmun. News of Ashmun’s appointment was either given or leaked to the press and within four days it was being reported that Ashmun was on a secret mission.
For more details, see:
- Robin W. Wink’s Canada and the United States: The Civil War Years (E 469 .W5 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
William Woods Averell (1832-1900) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer. Averell and Fitzhugh Lee were close friends at West Point and Lee had been sending his old friend taunting messages across the river during the winter of 1862-63. Averell had missed the Battle of Antietam and most of the Maryland Campaign as he recovered from a bout of malaria, known at the time as “Chickahominy Fever.” He did, however, command a Cavalry Brigade at the Battle of Fredericksburg. After the Civil War, he invented American asphalt pavement, which made him a wealthy man.
Edward D. (Dickinson) Baker (1811-1861) was born in London, England, to Quaker parents. His family immigrated to Philadelphia in 1816, and in 1825 they moved to the utopian community of New Harmony in Indiana. As an adult he became a lawyer in Illinois, participated in the Black Hawk War, met Abraham Lincoln and became involved in politics. After serving in the Illinois legislature, he defeated Lincoln for a U.S. Congressional seat and he served in Congress from 1845-1846, and again from 1849-1851. He and Lincoln remained friends and Lincoln’s son Eddie (Edward Baker Lincoln) was name for Baker. Baker served in the Mexican-American War as colonel of an Illinois infantry. In 1851 he moved to California, and in 1860 he moved to Oregon where he was elected to the U.S. Senate. When the Civil War broke out he was authorized to raise a California infantry regiment—although he recruited primarily in Philadelphia—and Baker became the colonel of this “California Brigade.” A few months later he was assigned command of a brigade in General Charles Stone’s division. Baker was killed on October 21, 1861, at the Battle of Ball’s Bluff—becoming the only sitting U.S. senator killed in the Civil War.
For more information:
- Elijah R. Kennedy’s The Contest for California in 1861: How Colonel E.D. Baker Saved the Pacific States to the Union (E 497 .K35 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library); also available on Google Books.
Nathaniel P. (Prentice, or Prentiss) Banks (1816-1894), was the 24th governor of Massachusetts from 1858 to January3, 1861. Lincoln considered Banks for a cabinet post, but eventually chose him as one of the first major generals of volunteers. Banks was given command on the upper Potomac when Brigadier General Robert Patterson failed to move aggressively in that area, thus contributing to the defeat at Bull’s Run.
William Barksdale (1821-1863) had served as a captain in the Mexican War and as a U.S. Representative from Mississippi from1853 to 1861. On May 1, 1861, he was appointed colonel of the 13th Mississippi Infantry (Confederate States Army), which he led in the First Battle of Bull Run. Barksdale is killed at Gettysburg.
Henry Danforth Barron (1833-1882). The following is from Barron’s entry in the Dictionary of Wisconsin History: “Upon an offer from Caleb Cushing, he moved to St. Croix Falls in 1861 to become an agent for the St. Croix Falls Manufacturing and Improvement Co. He became a Republican shortly after the outbreak of the Civil War and served in the Wisconsin assembly (1863-1864, 1866-1869, 1872-1873; speaker in 1866, 1873). From 1869 to 1871 he was a U.S. Treasury auditor. Barron served in the state senate (1874-1876), where his activities favored the development of lumber companies and railroads, and where he supported legislation for ‘homesteaders.’ By act of the legislature in 1869 the name of Dallas County was changed to Barron County in his honor.”
Edward Bates (1793-1869) would serve as Lincoln’s Attorney General from March 5, 1861 to November 24, 1864. Bates was one of four main candidates for the Republican Party’s 1860 presidential nomination, receiving support initially from Horace Greeley, who later switched his support to Lincoln.
DeWitt Clinton Baxter (1829-1881) was the colonel of the 72nd Pennsylvania Infantry, also known as the Philadelphia Fire Zouaves. The regiment had been mustered in on August 10 and had only left for Washington on September 16. It was part of Baker’s “California Brigade” and was claimed by the state of Pennsylvania after Baker’s death.
Judah Philip Benjamin (1811-1884) was the Confederate States of America Attorney General (February-September 1861), Secretary of War (September 1861-March 1862), and Secretary of State (March 1862-May 1865). Prior to the Civil War he was a lawyer and politician, serving in the Louisiana House of Representatives (1852) and the U.S. Senate from Louisiana (1853-1861). He was only the second Jewish senator in U.S. history. Following the Civil War, he moved to England—the only high-ranking Confederate politician to flee the country to avoid treason charges—where he became a distinguished barrister, and in 1872 was appointed a member of the Queen’s Counsel. In 1868 he published his Treatise on the Law of Sale of Personal Property, still in use today but now known as Benjamin’s Sale of Goods.
P. G. T. (Pierre Gustave Toutant) Beauregard (1818-1893) was the first brigadier general of the Confederate Army, and commanded the defenses at Charleston, South Carolina, at the start of the Civil War. Three months later he is in command as the Confederate Army wins the First Battle of Bull Run/Manassas. Of note: As an adult, Beauregard rarely used his first name of Pierre and signed his correspondence G. T. Beauregard.
Henry Ward Beecher (1813-1887) was a prominent Congregational clergyman, social reformer, speaker, and—along with his sister, Harriet Beecher Stowe, who wrote Uncle Tom’s Cabin—a well-known abolitionist. Beecher held that Christianity should adapt itself to the changing culture of the times, and he was an advocate of women’s suffrage, temperance, and evolution. Before the Civil War, he raised funds to buy rifles for anti-slavery immigrants in Kansas, and the rifles bought with this money became known as “Beecher’s Bibles.” He was also politically active and supported the Republican Party of Lincoln.
Henry H. (Haywood) Bell (1808-1868) was a career naval man and was promoted to Commander in 1854. During the Civil War he was Fleet Captain of the West Gulf Blockading Squadron and served in the campaigns that captured New Orleans. He was promoted to Commodore in July 1862. After completing his Gulf assignment in 1864, he will be assigned to the New York Navy Yard as Inspector of Ordnance.
Henry W. (Washington) Benham (1813-1884) graduated from West Point at the top of his class. He primarily served in the Army’s Engineer Corps where he worked primarily with sea walls, harbors, and was an expert in the construction of pontoon bridges. In 1861 he was promoted to brigadier general of volunteers. He disobeyed orders and was subject to a court martial after the battle of James Island (Battle of Secessionville and more) on June 16, 1862, at which he was in immediate command, under General David Hunter.
Jeremiah S. (Sullivan) Black (1810-1883) was the 24th U.S. Attorney General from 1857 to December 16, 1860 (followed by Edwin M. Stanton), and the 23rd U.S. Secretary of State from December 17, 1860-March 5, 1861 (preceded by Lewis Cass, succeeded by William H. Seward). Perhaps the most influential of President Buchanan’s official advisers, he denied the constitutionality of secession, and urged that Fort Sumter be properly reinforced and defended.
Francis P. (Preston) Blair (1821-1875) was a lawyer in Missouri who, before the Civil War, served in the Mexican War, was the attorney general for New Mexico Territory, served in the Missouri House of Representatives (1852-1856) and the U.S. House of Representatives (1856-1857, 1861-1862, 1863-1864), where he served as chairman of the Military Affairs Committee. He resigned from Congress in July 1862 to become a Union colonel of Missouri volunteers, and was promoted to brigadier general of volunteers in August and major general in November. Blair commanded a division in the Vicksburg campaign and in the fighting around Chattanooga, and was one of William T. Sherman’s corps commanders in his campaigns in Georgia and the Carolinas. After the War, having spent much of his private fortune in support of the Union, Blair was financially ruined. In the 1868 presidential election, Blair was the Democratic candidate for vice president. From 1871-1873 he served in the U.S. Senate from Missouri.
Louis Blenker (1812-1863) was a German-American who was born in Worms and had a successful military career in Germany before migrating to the United States. He settled on a farm in New York and at the beginning of the Civil War he organized the 8th New York Volunteer Infantry, of which he became colonel. He was noted for his coverage of the retreat at the First Battle of Bull Run and for his performance in western Virgina at the Battle of Cross Keys. After the Battle of Cross Keys, accusations were made, the primary ones being carelessness with respect to supplies and financial irregularities. He would die March 31, 1863, from the injuries suffered in the War.
James Gilpatrick Blunt (1826-1881) was a physician in Columbus, Ohio, and was active in county politics. In 1856 he moved his family to Kansas, where he became involved in the Missouri-Kansas border conflict. Blunt joined a force that included James H. Lane and abolitionist John Brown. When the Civil War started, Blunt was appointed lieutenant colonel of the 2nd Kansas Infantry, a part of Lane’s Kansas Brigade. Blunt had just been appointed brigadier general of volunteers and given command of the Department and Army of Kansas in April 1862.
Frederick A. Boardman (1832-1863) “had traveled the world as a young naval officer before helping to lead the 4th Wisconsin Infantry during the Civil War.” He will die in battle near New Orleans, Louisiana, on May 3, 1863.
For more information:
- Dictionary of Wisconsin History entry on Frederick A. Boardman.
Solon Borland (1808-1864) was an Arkansas newspaper publisher and also served in the Mexican War. After that war, he was elected United States Senator from Arkansas. His views were generally disunionist, and he was not popular with many members of the Senate. In 1850, he physically attacked Mississippi Senator Henry Foote in a debate over Southern rights. His views were not popular at home, either, and he resigned from the Senate in 1853. Borland then served as United States Minister to Nicaragua through 1854. At the start of the Civil War, Borland was appointed as a commander of the Arkansas state militia and he helped recruit troops for the Confederate Army.
John Minor Botts (1802-1869) was a U.S. Representative from Virginia, 1839-1843 and 1847-1849, serving as chairman of the House Committee on Military Affairs during his last term. He is a staunch Unionist throughout the Civil War.
John S. (Stevens) Bowen (1830-1863) graduated from West Point and was a career military officer. He was first assigned to the army cavalry school at Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and in 1855 he was transferred to the Jefferson Barracks in St. Louis. Later in 1855 he resigned from the U.S. Army and in 1857 he moved to Missouri and became active in the Missouri Volunteer Militia, patrolling the border looking for Kansas Jayhawkers. In May 1861 Bowen was captured by Union General Nathaniel Lyon, and while waiting to be exchanged he was commissioned a colonel in the Confederate States Army. He then became a brigade commander in Kentucky under General Leonidas Polk. Bowen was promoted to brigadier general in March 1862 and his brigade was assigned to General John C. Breckinridge’s Reserve Corps of the Army of Mississippi. He distinguished himself at the Battle of Shiloh, where he was severely wounded. After his recovery he commanded a brigade command in the Army of West Tennessee and took part in the Second Battle of Corinth.
In 1863 Bowen was assigned to the post of Grand Gulf with only a brigade of infantry. He became convinced that Grant would land near Grand Gulf and he repeatedly requested additional supplies and men from General Pemberton, but each request was refused. At the Battle of Port Gibson (May 1, 1863), Bowen, despite being severely outnumbered, managed to delay Ulysses S. Grant’s Army of the Tennessee for most of a day. Bowen fought at the Battle of Champion Hill (May 16, 1863), where a counterattack by his division almost split Grant’s army in half. After that battle Pemberton retreated to Vicksburg, ordering Bowen to cover the retreat and he suffered defeat at the Battle of Big Black River Bridge. Bowen died from dysentery shortly after the fall of Vicksburg.
S. C. (Samuel Cordes) Boylston (1844-1913) was a graduate of The Citadel, and as part of the South Carolina Corps of Cadets had helped build the “Star of the West Battery” on Morris Island in December 1860. During the April 1861 Fort Sumter battle he is stationed at the “Mortar Battery.” On August 22, 1861, he is commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant in the Confederate Army and is stationed at Fort Sumter from August 1861 to August 1863. Boylston is honorably discharged in Greensboro, North Carolina, on April 26, 1865, with the surrender of Johnston’s army.
Braxton Bragg (1817-1876) was a career United States Army officer, and then a general in the Confederate States Army. He graduated fifth of fifty cadets from the West Point Class of 1837 and was commissioned in the Gulf Coast region. He was a corps commander at the Battle of Shiloh and subsequently was names to command the Army of Mississippi (later known as the Army of Tennessee).
John C. (Cabell) Breckinridge (1821-1875) was a U.S. Representative and U.S. Senator from Kentucky, the 14th Vice President of the United States under James Buchanan (1857-1861), and one of two Democratic candidates for president in the 1860 election. In the Civil War he serves as a general in the Confederate States Army.
C. D. Brigham (d. 1894) was a journalist who wrote under the name “Jasper.”
Jesse D. (David) Bright (1812-1875) was the ninth lieutenant governor of Indiana (1843-1845) and a U.S. Senator from Indiana (1845-1862). He was the only Northern senator to be expelled (February 5, 1862) for being a Confederate sympathizer. The issue came up when Minnesota Senator Morton S. Wilkinson introduced the Senate to a letter written to Jefferson Davis by Bright on March 1, 1861, involving firearm trade.
John Brough (1811-1865) was a War Democrat and the 26th governor of Ohio (1864-1865). He made a strongly pro-Union speech in Marietta, Ohio, on June 10, 1863. As governor, Brough strongly supported the the Lincoln Administration and its war efforts. He convinced other Midwestern governors to raise 100-day regiments in early 1864 in order for more seasoned soldiers to join General Ulysses S. Grant’s spring campaign.
John Brown (1800-1859) was another well-known abolitionist who advocated, and practiced, armed insurrection as a means of abolishing slavery. Brown first gained attention when he led small groups of volunteers during the Bleeding Kansas crisis. In 1859 he led a raid on a federal armory at Harpers Ferry, Virginia (now West Virginia); he intended to arm slaves with weapons from the arsenal. The raid failed, but seven people were killed, and Brown was tried, convicted, and executed for murder, conspiracy, and treason against the state of Virginia. After John Brown was executed in 1859, someone created a new, fiercer set of lyrics for the tune “Battle Hymn of the Republic,” and the new song, “John Brown’s Body,” becames a Union marching song during the Civil War.
Joseph E. (Emerson) Brown (1821-1894), known as ”Joe,” was the 42nd governor of Georgia from 1857 to 1865. In 1861, after Lincoln’s election and South Carolina’s secession, he became a strong supporter of secession. But, being a states’ rights advocate, he was opposed to the Confederate central government’s powers and resisted the Confederacy’s military draft. After the fall of Atlanta, Brown used the state’s militia forces to harvest crops for the state and the army. When Union troops under Sherman overran much of Georgia in 1864, Brown called for an end to the War. After the War, Brown supported President Andrew Johnson’s Reconstruction policy. He was elected to the U.S. Senate and served from 1880-1891.
Francis E. (Edwin) Brownell (1840-1894) received the Medal of Honor in 1877 for his action in killing James W. Jackson, the inn proprietor who killed Elmer E. Ellsworth. Ellsworth was the first Union officer killed in the Civil War.
- Later in life, Brownell donated Jackson’s shotgun, his own rifle that he used to kill Jackson, and his Medal of Honor to the Smithsonian Institution.
William G. (Gannaway) Brownlow (1805-1877) was a Methodist minister, newspaper publisher, and Tennessee politician. He became known as “The Fighting Parson” due to his caustic editorials. While strongly pro-Union, Brownlow and many of his few East Tennesseans were pro-slavery, but willing to get rid of the institution if it proved necessary to save the Union. Once Tennessee seceded, Brownlow shifted his editorial attacks to the Confederate government. In October 1861 he was forced to cease publishing and flee Knoxville. Offered a safe conduct pass to Union lines, Brownlow returned to Knoxville in the winter, only to be arrested and imprisoned. After the war, he was one of the most controversial politicians of the Reconstruction-era South, serving as the governor of Tennessee, 1865 to 1869, and as a United States Senator from Tennessee, 1869 to 1875.
George E. (Edwin) Bryant (1832-1907) was born in Massachusetts, went to college and read the law there, being admitted to the bar shortly before moving to Madison, Wisconsin, where he was a law partner with Myron H. Orton. In 1860, Bryant was captain of the “Governor’s Guard” in Madison, the first company to offer their services in Wisconsin at the beginning of the Civil War. His company served five-months in the First Wisconsin Infantry. At the termination of their service, Captain Bryant returned home, and was shortly afterward commissioned colonel of the 12th Wisconsin Infantry.
After the War, Bryant returned to Wisconsin and his farm near Madison where he engaged in cattle breeding. He was elected county judge in Dane County (1865-1877), state senator (1875-1876), Wisconsin quartermaster general (1876-1882), and postmaster of Madison (1882-1886 and 1890-1894). Bryant was a member of the Republican state central committee (1896-1904) and was state superintendent of public property (1901- 1907).
For more information, see:
- George Edwin Bryant entry in the Dictionary of Wisconsin History
- Colonel George E. Bryant entry in The United States Biographical Dictionary (available online).
James Buchanan (1791-1868) was the 15th President of the United States from 1857 to 1861. Buchana was viewed by many as a compromise between the two sides of the slavery question. Buchanan’s efforts to maintain peach between the North and the South alienated both sides.
The UWRF Chalmer Davee Library has the following books on President Buchanan and his administration:
- James Buchanan and His Cabinet on the Eve of Secession, by Philip G. Auchampaugh (E 437 .A75)
- James Buchanan and the American Empire, by Frederick Moore Binder (E 437 .B56 1994).
- Life of James Buchanan, Fifteenth President of the United States, by George Ticknor Curtis (E 437 .C97)
- President James Buchanan: A Biography, by Philip S. Klein (E 437 .K53)
- The Presidency of James Buchanan, by Elbert B. Smith (E 436 .S6)
Simon Bolivar Buckner (1823-1914) graduated from West Point and then became an instructor there. He served in the Mexican War. Buckner returned to his native state of Kentucky in 1857. Governor Beriah Magoffin appointed him adjutant general in 1861. He tried to enforce Kentucky’s neutrality, but when that failed Buckner accepted a commission in the Confederate Army after declining a similar commission to the Union Army. In 1862, he will surrender to Ulysses S. Grant at the Battle of Fort Donelson. In the years following the war, Buckner will become active in politics and serve as Kentucky’s 30th governor, from 1887-1891.
Don Carlos Buell (1818-1898) was a career military officer who graduated from West Point. He fought in the Seminole War, the Mexican War, and the Civil War. At the start of the Civil War, Buell was an early organizer of the Army of the Potomac and briefly commanded one of its divisions. In November 1861, he succeeded Brigadier General William T. Sherman in command at Louisville, Kentucky. Buell’s command was designated the Department of the Ohio and his troops the Army of the Ohio, later called the Army of the Cumberland. He captured Nashville on February 25, 1862. Buell led Union armies in the battles of Shiloh and Perryville, but failed to defeat the outnumbered Confederates after Perryville. Buell was relieved of field command in late 1862 and made no more significant military contributions.
For more information:
- April 30, 1862, post: Who Are the Union’s Western Generals?
John Buford (1826-1863) graduated from West Point and served along the Mexican border. In 1856-57 he participated in quelling the disturbances in “Bleeding Kansas,” and in 1857-58 he served with Albert Sidney Johnston in the Mormon War. At the outbreak of the Civil War, he was offered and rejected a commission in the Confederate army.
Napoleon Bonaparte Buford, older half-brother of John Buford, graduated from West Point and remained in the army until his resignation in 1835. He rejoined the army in 1861, when he was elected colonel of the 27th Illinois Volunteers. After serving meritoriously in the early western campaigns of the Civil War, Napoleon Buford was commissioned a brigadier general of volunteers on April 15, 1862, immediately after the battle of Shiloh. He was given command of a brigade in Brig. Gen. William S. Rosecrans’ Army of the Mississippi, and served in that capacity during the early phases of the Vicksburg campaign. In January 1863, he was given command at Cairo, Illinois, a position he held until September 12, 1863, when he took command of the garrison of Helena, Arkansas, a position he held until the end of the war. On March 13, 1865, he was promoted to brevet major general of volunteers, and was mustered out of the service on August 24, 1865.
Ambrose E. (Everett) Burnside (1824-1881) was an American soldier, railroad executive, inventor, industrialist, and politician from Rhode Island, serving as governor (1866-1869) and a U.S. Senator (1875-1881). As a Union general in the Civil War, he conducted successful campaigns in North Carolina (the Burnside Expedition between February and June 1862) and East Tennessee (Knoxville Campaing during the fall of 1863). But he was defeated in the disastrous Battle of Fredericksburg (December 11-15, 1862) and the Battle of the Crater (July 30, 1864), earning him a reputation as one of the most incompetent generals of the war. On a lighter note, his distinctive style of facial hair is now known as sideburns, which is derived from his last name.
Benjamin F. (Franklin) Butler (1818-1893) had been a member of the Massachusetts legislature. In the 1860 presidential election, he was a supporter of John C. Breckinridge. Prior to the Civil War he was a brigadier general in the Massachusetts militia; in the Civil War he will become a major general of the 8th Massachusetts Infantry.
Daniel Adams Butterfield (1831-1901), who had little military background beyond part-time militia activities, became a brigadier general in five months of joining the military. He is credited with the composing “Taps,” probably the most famous bugle call ever written. Butterfield had just became commander of the V Corps for the Battle of Fredericksburg. His corps was one of those assaulting through the city and up against murderous fire from Marye’s Heights.
George Cadwalader (1806-1879) was a general in the U.S. Army during the Mexican War. Pennsylvania Governor Curtin appoints him major general of the Pennsylvania state militia in April of 1861, and on May 25 he is appointed a major general of Volunteers in the U.S. Army.
Simon Cameron (1799-1889) was Lincoln’s first Secretary of War, serving from March 5, 1861, until he resigns on January 14, 1862, amid charges of corruption. Cameron had delivered Pennsylvania to Lincoln in the 1860 election and the secretaryship was his reward. Before that, he was a U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania, succeeding James Buchanan in that seat.
Edward Richard Sprigg Canby (1817-1873) was another career Army officer. At the start of the Civil War, Canby commanded Fort Defiance, in New Mexico Territory. He was promoted to colonel of the 19th U.S. Infantry in May 1861, and by June commanded the Department of New Mexico. H. H. Sibley was his former assistant. Although defeated by Sibley at the Battle of Valverde (February 20-21, 1862), Canby and his troops eventually forced the Confederates to retreat to Texas after the Union strategic victory at the Battle of Glorieta Pass (March 26-28, 1862).
John S. (Snyder) Carlile (1817-1878) was a member of the Know Nothing Party in the U.S. House for one term beginning in 1854, and a U.S. Senator from Virginia, July 9, 1861-March 1865. As a leader in the anti-secession movement at the Virginia Convention, he voted “no” on the secession resolution, despite the fact that he himself was a slave owner.
Matthew H. (Hale) Carpenter (1824-1881) moved to Wisconsin in 1848, settling in Beloit and then Milwaukee; he practiced law in both places. In the 1850s he changed his name to Matthew Hale Carpenter. An avid Democrat, in his early career he supported Stephen A. Douglas in the election of 1860. With the outbreak of the Civil War, he became a “war Democrat” and soon joined the ranks of the Republican party. After the War, he became a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin (serving 1869-1875 and 1879-1881) and a supporter of President Grant. Carpenter was a brilliant orator and logician, but his insistence on legalism and his seeming lack of deep-rooted loyalties gave political ammunition to his enemies, who attempt to make him the symbol of reconstruction corruption.
For more information:
- Carpenter, Matthew Hale article in the online “Dictionary of Wisconsin History.”
Matthew Hale Carpenter: Webster of the West, by E. Bruce Thompson, (E 664 .C29 T5 UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
- The Matthew Hale Carpenter Papers are available at the Wisconsin Historical Society (and can be used at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls University Archives and Area Research Center via the ARC Network).
Henry B. (Beebee) Carrington (1824-1912) was a close friend and supporter of Salmon P. Chase when he was the governor of Ohio. Chase appointed him Judge Advocate General in 1857 and charged him with reorganizing Ohio’s state militia. Carrington subsequently becomes Ohio’s adjutant general and musters in ten regiments of militia at the outbreak of the Civil War. In May of 1861 he will be commissioned colonel of the 18th U.S. Infantry.
Silas Casey (1807-1882), another graduate of West Point and career military officer, served in the 2nd Seminole War, the Mexican War, and on the western frontier. He fought in the Peninsula Campaign, where his division suffered heavy losses at Battle of Seven Pines and he was promoted to major general shortly after the battle. He wrote the three-volume System of Infantry Tactics, including Infantry Tactics volumes I and II, published by the army on August 11, 1862, and Infantry Tactics for Colored Troops, published on March 9, 1863. The manuals were used by both sides during the Civil War.
Lewis Cass (1782-1866) was the 22nd U.S. Secretary of State from March 6, 1857-December 14, 1860. Cass’s biographer, Andrew Cunningham McLaughlin, states that Cass resigned in December 1860 because of Buchanan’s failure to protect federal interests in the South and his failure to mobilize the federal military, actions that might have averted the threatened secession of Southern states.
For more information:
- Lewis Cass, by McLaughlin, (E 340 .C3 M15 UWRF Chalmer Davee Library); also available digitally on Google Books.
- Lewis Cass, the Last Jeffersonian, by Frank Bury Woodford, (E 340 .C3 W66 UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
Salmon P. (Portland) Chase (1808-1873) was a U.S. Senator from Ohio (1849-1855), the 23rd Governor of Ohio (1856-1860), Lincoln’s U.S. Secretary of the Treasury (March 7, 1861-June 30, 1864), and a Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court (1864-1873), nominated by Lincoln.
For more information:
- Lincoln, Master of Men: A Study in Character, by Alonzo Rothschild (E 457 .R84 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library); digitally available on Google Books.
Benjamin F. (Franklin) Cheatham (1820-1886), a Confederate general. He had been born into two of the most prominent families of the middle Tennessee elite of the slave society. He was a captain in the Mexican War, being promoted to colonel of the 3rd Tennessee by the end of the war, and served as a brigadier general in the Tennessee militia. In the Civil War, he served in many battles of the Western Theater, including Shiloh, Perryville, and Stones River.
Cassius M. (Marcellus) Clay (1810-1903), nicknamed “The Lion of White Hall,” was a cousin of Henry Clay. He was a southern aristocrat (from Madison County, Kentucky) who became a prominent anti-slavery crusader. He was a founder of the Republican Party, and a friend and supporter of Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln tried to appoint Clay ambassador to Spain when the Civil War started, but he declined. When the Civil War began, there were no Federal troops in Washington at the time, so Mr. Clay organized a group of 300 volunteers to protect the White House and U.S. Naval Yard from a possible Confederate attack. These men became known as Cassius M. Clay’s Washington Guards. Clay then became the Minister to Russia once Federal troops arrived to protect the capital city. Later recalled to the United States to accept a commission as a major general from Lincoln, Clay publicly refused to accept it unless Lincoln would sign an emancipation proclamation.
Powell Clayton (1833-1914) attended the Partridge Military Academy in Bristol, Pennsylvania, and then studied civil engineering in Wilmington, Delaware, before moving to Leavenworth, Kansas, in 1855 to work as a surveyor. At the outbreak of the Civil War, Clayton was elected captain of Company E of the 1st Kansas Infantry. His unit saw action in the Battle of Wilson’s Creek, Missouri, in August 1861, and Clayton received a citation for his leadership in the battle. In December 1861 he received a commission as lieutenant colonel of the 5th Kansas Cavalry and in March 1862 he was promoted to colonel. The 5th Kansas moved to Arkansas later in 1862 and was stationed at Helena. It fought guerrillas outside of Helena and carried out at least one significant raid up the Saint Francis River in March 1863. This raid is officially known as the Helena Expedition (March 5-12, 1863), and is also known as the Saint Francis River Expedition and the Little River Expedition. In October 1863, Clayton became the commander of the post at Pine Bluff. On October 25, 1863, he successfully repulsed a three-pronged confederate attack by the forces of General John S. Marmaduke. With his forces badly outnumbered, Clayton effectively used freedmen to build barricades of piled cotton bales around the Pine Bluff courthouse and surrounding streets and put out fires started by the attackers to block the assault. Clayton was appointed a brigadier general of volunteers on August 1, 1864.
After the War, Clayton will be the 9th governor of Arkansas, first Reconstruction Republican governor, serving from 1868-1871. He served as U.S. Senator from Arkansas from 1871-1877, and as United States Ambassador to Mexico from 1897 to 1905.
For more information:
- Powell Clayton article in The Encyclopedia of Arkansas History & Culture.
David R. (Ramsey) Clendenin (1830-1895) was the major of the 8th Illinois Cavalry from September 18, 1861, to December 5, 1862, when he was promoted to lieutenant colonel. On May 1, 1865, Clendenin was named to the 12-member Military Commission that was appointed to try those accused of the conspiracy to kill President Lincoln. After the War, he remained in the Regular Army after the end of the conflict, and retired in 1891 with the rank of colonel.
Howell Cobb (1815-1868) served as U.S. Congressman (1843-51; 1855-57), Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives (1849-51), governor of Georgia (1851-53), and as the 22nd U.S. Secretary of the Treasury (March 7, 1857-December 8, 1860). Following Georgia’s secession from the Union in 1861, he served as president of the Provisional Confederate Congress (1861-62) and a major general of the Confederate army.
For more information:
- “Right of Secession (December 31, 1860),” a pamphlet written by Howell Cobb and included in Southern Pamphlets on Secession, November 1860-April 1861, edited by Jon L. Wakelyn (E 458.1 .S68 1996 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
- Howell Cobb entry in The New Georgia Encyclopedia.
John Cochrane (1813-1898), a Union general and politician from New York. He resigned his commission as a brigadier general of volunteers in February 1863, ostensibly because of failing health, but more likely because of his political maneuverings. He had agitated for the removal of General Ambrose E. Burnside. Cochrane served as New York’s Attorney General from 1864-1865, elected on a ticket nominated by the Union State Convention, a coalition of War Democrats and Republicans. In 1864 he was nominated by the Radical Republicans for the vice-presidency of the United States, on the ticket with John C. Frémont.
Schuyler Colfax (1823-1885) was a Republican politician who served in the U.S. House of Representatives from Indiana from 1855-1869, as Speaker of the House of Representatives from 1863-1869, and asPresident Ulysses S. Grant’s vice president from 1869-1873. Before the War, he was an opponent of slavery and wrote a famous speech condemning the pro-slavery legislature in Kansas.
Michael Corcoran (1827-1863) was the Irish-American colonel of the 69th New York Infantry and a close confidant of President Lincoln. He led the 69th at the First Battle of Bull Run, where he was taken prisoner; he was exchanged in August 1862. After promotion to brigadier general, he left the 69th and formed the Corcoran Legion, consisting of at least five other New York regiments. On December 22, 1863, while riding alone, his horse fell on him and he died from a fractured skull. Corcoran was largely idolized by his Irish-American troops and he figures prominently in many Union Irish ballads of the day.
Montgomery M. (Morrison) Cothern (1819-1888) settled, with his parents, in New Diggings, Wisconsin, in 1839. He was admitted to the bar in 1843 and established a law practice in Mineral Point. “A Democrat, he was a member of the territorial lower house (1847- 1848) and state senator (1849-1850). In 1852 he was elected judge of the 5th judicial circuit, serving from 1853 to 1865, and was again elected in 1876, serving from 1877 to 1883.”
For more details:
Darius Nash Couch (1822-1897) graduated from West Point and was a career military officer, serving in the Mexican War, garrison duty at both Fort Monroe and Fort Pickens, in the Seminole Wars, and from 1853 to 1854 he conducted a scientific mission for the Smithsonian Institution in Mexico. He resigned his commission in 1855 and worked as a merchant and then copper fabricator. At the beginning of the Civil War, he was appointed colonel of the 7th Massachusetts Infantry, and in August 1861 was promoted to brigadier general. Couch served in the Peninsula and Fredericksburg campaigns of 1862, and the Chancellorsville and Gettysburg campaigns of 1863.
John J. (Jordan) Crittenden (1787-1863) was a U.S. Senator from Kentucky until March 4, 1861, and a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Kentucky from July 4, 1861 until his death on July 26, 1863. He had also served as the 15th and 22nd U.S. Attorney General (under Millard Fillmore and then William Henry Harrison). He was frequently mentioned as a potential candidate for president, but never ran.
Thomas L. (Leonidas) Crittenden (1819-1893) a Union general during the American Civil War. He was appointed Brigadier General of volunteers in September and placed in command of the 5thDivision in the Army of the Ohio. He led the Division at the Battle of Shiloh in 1862.
For more information:
- April 30, 1862, post: Who Are the Union’s Western Generals?
M. M. (Marcellus Monroe) Crocker (1830-1865) attended West Point but did not graduate. He held the title of Captain in the 2nd Iowa Infantry inn 1861and was promoted to colonel later that year. He was part of the Battle of Shiloh in April of 1862, the Battle of Corinth in October of 1862, and was promoted to General in November of 1862. He also took part in the Vicksburg Campaign, and the Battle of Jackson in 1863. Crocker suffered from consumption throughout his military career, and he became so ill while trying to join William T. Sherman for the Atlanta Campaign that he tendered his resignation, which was not accepted. Thinking that his health might improve in the desert, he was sent to New Mexico Territory. By December 1864, he was well enough that he was sent to Nashville. But his condition gradually worsened, and he died on August 26, 1865.
George R. Crook (1828-1890) graduated from West Point and was a career military officer, serving in Oregon and California fighting Indians. In 1857 he lead the Pitt River Expedition and was severely wounded. When the Civil War started he accepted as commission as colonel of the 36th Ohio Infantry. In September 1862 Crook assumed command of a brigade and led it at the battles of South Mountain and Antietam, and was promoted to brigadier general. He fought at the Battle of Chickamauga (September 19-20, 1863) and was in pursuit of Joseph Wheeler during the Chattanooga Campaign. Crook commanded the Union’s Army of West Virginia at the Battle of Cloyd’s Mountain (May 9, 1864), which allowed the Union forces to destroy the last railroad connecting Tennessee to Virginia. In late July 1864 he was defeated at the Second Battle of Kernstown and the Army of West Virginia was driven from the Shenandoah Valley. Nevertheless he was given command of the Department of West Virginia. Crook led his corps in the Valley Campaigns of 1864 at the battles of Opequon (Third Winchester), Fisher’s Hill, and Cedar Creek. On October 21, 1864, he was promoted to major general of volunteers. In February 1865 Crook was captured at Cumberland, Maryland, and held as a prisoner of war in Richmond until being exchanged a month later. During the Appomattox Campaign he had command of the Army of the Potomac’s cavalry division. Crook first went into action with his division at the battle of Dinwiddie Court House. He later took a prominent role in the battles of Five Forks, Amelia Springs, Sayler’s Creek and Appomattox Court House.
After the Civil War, Crook successfully campaigned against the Snake Indians in the 1864-68 Snake War, where he won nationwide recognition. Crook later defeated a mixed band of Paiute, Pit River and Modoc at the battle of Infernal Caverns in California. President Ulysses S. Grant next placed Crook in command of the Arizona Territory. Crook’s use of Apache scouts during the Yavapai War brought him much success in forcing the Yavapai and Tonto Apache onto reservations. Crook served against the Sioux during the Great Sioux War of 1876-77 and fought the Lakota at the Battle of the Rosebud. By 1882 Crook returned to Arizona to fight the Apache under Geronimo. After years of campaigning in the Indian Wars, Crook won steady promotion back up the ranks to the permanent grade of Major General, and President Grover Cleveland placed him in command of the “Military Division of the Missouri” in 1888.
Andrew Cregg Curtin (1817-1894) was the 15th Governor of Pennsylvania from January 15, 1861-January 15, 1867. Curtin is a close friend of President Lincoln, and a political foe of fellow Pennsylvanian Simon Cameron. In September 1862, Curtin convenes the Loyal War Governors’ Conference in Altoona, Pennsylvania. This event, that brought together 13 governors to discuss the war effort, state troop quotas, and support of President Lincoln and the Emancipation Proclamation, is one of Curtin’s most significant contributions to the Union war effort. In 1863 Curtin is a major force behind the establishment of the Gettysburg National Cemetery and procurs President Lincoln to speak at the dedication.
Congressman James G. Blaine wrote: “Circumstance had thrown him [Curtin] into close and confidential relations with Mr. Lincoln,–relations which had their origin at the time of the Chicago Convention, and which had grown more intimate after Mr. Lincoln was inaugurated. Before the firing on Sumter, but when the States of the Confederacy were evidently preparing for war, Mr. Lincoln earnestly desired a counter signal of the readiness on the part of the North. Governor Curtin undertook to do it in Pennsylvania at the President’s special request. On the eleventh day of April, one day before the South precipitated the conflict, the Legislature of Pennsylvania passed an Act for the better organization of the militia, and appropriated five hundred thousand dollars to carry out the details of the measure. The manifest reference to the impending trouble was in the words prescribing the duty of the Adjutant-General of the State in case the President should call out the militia. It was the first official step in the loyal States to defend the Union, and the generous appropriation, made in advance of any blow struck by the Confederacy, enabled Governor Curtin to rally the forces of the great Commonwealth to the defense of the Union with marvelous promptness.”
Quoted in the “Andrew G. Curtin” article on the Mr. Lincoln’s White House website, from Blaines’ Twenty Years of Congressman from Lincoln to Garfield, vol. 1, page. 306.
Samuel R. (Ryan) Curtis (1805-1866) had been a congressman from Iowa in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1856-1860. When the war started he was appointed colonel of the 2nd Iowa Infantry, and subsequently promoted to brigadier general and given command of the Army of the Southwest. He moved his headquarters to Rolla, Missouri, to solidify Union control in Arkansas, and won the Battle of Pea Ridge. He will be promoted to major general for his success.
Lysander Cutler (1807-1866) was a Milwaukee businessman before the war. Originally from Maine, he received some military experience fighting Indians as a colonel in the Maine militia in the 1830s. The financial panic of 1856 and depression of 1857 ruined him financially and he moved to Milwaukee where he eventually founded a grain business. His actual commission as the colonel of the 6th Wisconsin Infantry dated from July 16, 1861. He was appointed brigadier general in November 1862 and brevetted a major general in August 1864.
For more details:
Napoleon J. T. (Jackson Tecumseh) Dana (1822-1905) was a career military officer, a graduate of West Point who fought with distinction in the Mexican War. He resigned from the Army in 1855 and moved to St. Paul, Minnesota, where he became a banker. Dana served as a brigadier general in the Minnesota State Militia from 1857 until 1861 when he became the first colonel of the 1st Minnesota Infantry in October 1861. In February, 1862, Dana was appointed brigadier general and given command of the 3rd Brigade of the 2nd Division in the Union II Corps, and he led the brigade throughout the Peninsula Campaign and at the Battle of Antietam, where he was severely wounded. In late November, 1862, he was appointed a major general (not confirmed by the Senate until March) but could not resume his duties due to his wound until the summer of 1863. During the Gettysburg Campaign he will command the defenses of Philadelphia. In 1864 he was transferred to the Western Theater and commanded Vicksburg. His final command of the War was head of the Department of Mississippi.
John W. (Wynn) Davidson (1825-1881) was a career military officer who graduated from West Point, and served in the Mexican War and on the Western frontier. Davidson commanded the 3rd Brigade, 2nd Division, IV Corps during the Peninsula Campaign. He fought at the battles of Yorktown and Williamsburg. During the Seven Days Battles (June 25-July 1, 1862) he received brevet promotions in the Regular Army for his service at Gaines’ Mill (June 27) and Golding’s Farm (June 27-28). He was then transferred to the Trans-Mississippi Theater and from December 1862 to March 26, 1863, he commanded the Army of Southeast Missouri until it was transferred to General Ulysses S. Grant in preparation for the Vicksburg Campaign. In late 1863 Davidson commanded the 1st Division in the Army of Arkansas and won the Battle of Bayou Fourche (September 10, 1863), which led to the fall of Little Rock. After the Civil War, Davidson was lieutenant colonel of the 10th Cavalry, known as the Buffalo Soldiers. died in Saint Paul, Minnesota, in 1881 after being seriously injured by a fall from a horse.
Charles H. (Henry) Davis (1807-1877) was a career naval officer. In November 1861 he was promoted to captain and in May 1862 was made Acting Flag Officer in command of the Western Gunboat Flotilla. On June 6, 1862, his ships had fought in the Battle of Memphis, which resulted in the sinking or capture of seven of the eight Confederate ships. In July, he cooperated with Flag Officer David G. Farragut in an attack on Vicksburg, Mississippi, but they were forced to withdraw. In August, he proceeded up the Yazoo River and successfully seized Confederate supplies and munitions there. He then returned to Washington, D.C., and in early 1863 he was promoted to rear admiral.
Jefferson C. (Columbus) Davis (1828-1879) had the misfortune of having the same first and last names as the president of the Confederacy. He was a career military officer who had served in the Mexican War, and was serving in the Fort Sumter garrison when it was bombarded at the start of the Civil War. Davis led the 3rd Division, Army of the Southwest.
Jefferson (Fine) Davis (1808-1889) was the president of the Confederate States of America for its entire existence, 1861-1865.
Henry Winter Davis (1817-1865) was a U.S. Representative from Maryland. Like Hicks, he was a member of the Know Nothing Party. He held strong anti-slavery views and became a Radical Republican.
John Dougherty Defrees (1810-1882) was a newspaperman and politician. Lincoln appointed him Government Printer as a reward for his party loyalty and his support of Lincoln. “As Government Printer, he was twice removed from office under subsequent changes in administrations. His first removal came in 1866 when his criticism of President Johnson’s policies got him into trouble. He was dismissed, only to be reappointed by the Senate a few months later when Congress made the post of U.S. Printer a Senate office. But Mr. Defrees was again removed as Printer in 1869 for criticizing corruption in Grant’s administration. The game of musical chairs ended for him when President Hayes reappointed him to the post of Printer in 1877 where he continued until ill health forced him to resign for good in 1882.”
- From Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame profile of Defrees.
Daniel S. (Stevens) Dickinson (1800-1866) was a U.S. Senator from New York (1844-1851) and the New York State Attorney General (1862-1863), elected as a War Democrat.
John Adams Dix (1798-1879) served as U.S. Senator from New York (1845-1849), Secretary of the Treasury (January 15-March 6, 1861),and the 24th Governor of New York (1873-1874). He would become an early hero for the North in the Civil War when, at the outbreak of the War, he sent a telegram to Treasury agents in New Orleans ordering “If any one attempts to haul down the American flag, shoot him on the spot.” Also at the beginning of the war, he arrested the members of the Maryland legislature, thereby preventing Maryland from seceding, and earned him President Lincoln’s gratitude.
Dix was appointed a major general, effective May 16, 1861, in the New York Militia, making him the highest ranking major general of volunteers during the war. During the summer of 1861 he commanded the Department of Maryland and the Department of Pennsylvania.
Grenville Mellen Dodge (1831-1916) was a civil engineer and railroad surveyor. At the beginning of the Civil War he was appointed colonel of the 4th Iowa Infantry in July 1861. He commanded the 1st Brigade, 4th Division at the Battle of Pea Ridge, where he was wounded. He was then appointed brigadier general of volunteers and placed in command of the District of Mississippi, where he was involved in protecting and building railroads. He participated in the Atlanta Campaign and intercepted John B. Hood’s flank attack. As the Civil War was ending in 1865, Dodge ordered a campaign (the Powder River Expedition) to quell Indian raids on the Bozeman Trail. Dodge provided Thomas Durant with information that allowed him to make a fortune smuggling cotton and after the War Dodge became Durant’s chief engineer on the Union Pacific Railroad.
Abner Doubleday (1819-1893), a graduate of West Point and a career military officer, he He fired the first shot in defense of Fort Sumter, the opening battle of the war. At the Battle of Fredericksburg, and the 6th and 7th Wisconsin Infantries, part of the 4th Brigade, were in Doubleday’s First Division. Doubleday will play a pivotal role in the early fighting at the Battle of Gettysburg. After the War, Doubleday obtained a patent on the cable car railway that still runs in San Francisco.
Stephen A. (Arnold) Douglas (1813-1861) was a U.S. Senator from Illinois, 1847-1861, and the Democratic presidential candidate in 1860. Although he had defeated Abraham Lincoln two years earlier for the Senate seat after the now-famous Lincoln-Douglas Debates, he lost to Lincoln in the presidential election. Douglas dies on June 3, 1861, from typhoid fever.
Neal S. Dow (1804-1897), the son of Quaker parents, had the nickname the “Napoleon of Temperance” and the “Father of Prohibition.” He was also an ardent abolitionist and his home was a stop on the Underground Railroad. When the Civil War began, Dow volunteered for service even though he was 57. He was appointed colonel of the 13th Maine Infantry and his regiment participated in the capture of New Orleans. He was promoted to brigadier general in April 1862, and was assigned to command Forts Jackson and Saint Philip, the two Confederate forts captured at the same time as New Orleans. Dow is best remembered for his role in the Siege of Port Hudson, May 21–July 9, 1863. During the Union assault on Port Hudson on May 27 he was wounded in the right arm and left thigh and sent to a nearby plantation to convalesce where he was captured by Confederates in early July. He was imprisoned for eight months, and then exchanged Confederate General Fitzhugh Lee on February 25, 1864. His health deteriorated in prison and as a consequence he resigned from the Union Army in November 1864.
Samuel F. (Francis) Du Pont (1803-1865) was a member of the prominent Du Pont family and a career naval officer. In June 1861 he was made president of a board formed to develop a plan of naval operations against the Confederacy. He was appointed flag officer serving aboard the steam frigate Wabash as commander of the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron. On November 7, Du Pont had led the successful attack on the fortifications at Port Royal, which enabled Union naval forces to establish an effective blockade of the southern waters of Georgia and the entire eastern coast of Florida.
Basil W. (Wilson) Duke (1838-1916) was a lawyer before the Civil War. He is most noted as the second-in-command for his brother-in-law John Hunt Morgan. In 1864 he took over Morgan’s command after Morgan was killed by Union soldiers. At the end of the war, Duke was among Confederate President Jefferson Davis’ bodyguards after his flight from Richmond. After the War, Duke wrote a popular account of Morgan’s 1863 raid into Ohio called History of Morgan’s Cavalry, published in 1867. He also helped found the Louisville (Ky.) Filson Club and in 1904 he was appointed commissioner of the Shiloh National Military Park. The UWRF Library has a copy of the 1969 reprint of Duke’s 1911 Reminiscences of General Basil W. Duke (E 470 .D89)
Jubal A. (Anderson) Early (1816-1894) strongly opposed secession at the Virginia Convention, but was soon aroused to take the opposite view when President Lincoln called for 75,000 volunteers to suppress the rebellion. Early ends up serving as an officer in the Confederate Army, where Robert E. Lee appreciates his aggressive fighting and ability to command units independently.
James M. Edmunds (1810-1879) chaired the Michigan Republican Party from 1855-1861. In 1861, President Lincoln appointed him the commissioner of the General Land Office, a position he held until 1866, when he became postmaster of the U.S. Senate.
Washington Lafayette Elliott (1825-1888) attended West Point and fought in the Mexican War. He remained in the U.S. Army, rising to the rank of captain. At the beginning of the Civil War, he was still in the regular Army and fought at the Battle of Wilson’s Creek. In the fall of 1861 he was commissioned colonel of the 2nd Iowa Cavalry and served under Gen. Pope at the Battle of Island Number 10. At the Siege of Corinth, he led a brigade. Elliott became a brigadier general on June 11 as a result of this raid on the Mobile and Ohio Railroad.
Elmer E. (Ephraim) Ellsworth (1837-1861) was a colonel of Zouaves before being appointed a lieutenant in the U.S. Army. A Chicagoan, he was a close friend of President Lincoln’s family and accompanied Lincoln on his trip to Washington, D.C., for the inauguration. Ellsworth was shot on May 24, 1861, after pulling down a Confederate flag flying over the Marshall House in Alexandria.
For more information on Elmer E. Ellsworth:
- “Ellsworth is Namesake of Famed Civil War Officer Killed by Reb,” by John Halls, in Ellsworth, 1862-1962: Historical Album and Program Book, [Ellsworth, Wis.: Program Book Committee, 1962], p. 9. (F 589 .E44 E4 in the Chalmer Davee Library)
- From The Photographic History of the Civil War In Ten Volumes, Volume One: The Opening Battles, (New York: The Review of Reviews Co., 1911), p. 351 (digital copy on the Internet Archives): “One of the First to Fall. The shooting of this young patriot profoundly shocked and stirred the Federals at the opening of the war. Colonel Ellsworth had organized a Zouave regiment in Chicago, and in April, 1861, he organized another from the Fire Department in New York City. Colonel Ellsworth, on May 21, 1861, led his Fire Zouaves to Alexandria, Virginia, seized the city, and with his own hands pulled down a Southern flag floating over the Marshall House. Descending the stairs with the flag in his hand, he cried, ‘Behold my trophy!’ ‘Behold mine!’ came the reply from the proprietor of the hotel, James T. Jackson, as he emptied a shotgun into Ellsworth’s breast. Jackson was immediately shot dead by Private Broswell.”
- Article on Ellsworth at Mr. Lincoln’s White House.
John Ericsson (1803-1889) was a Swedish-American mechanical engineer and inventor, best known for designing the steam locomotive Novelty and the armored ship USS Monitor. Despite controversy over the ironclad’s unique design, the Monitor was launched on March 6, 1862. Ericcson’s design included a rotating turret that housed a pair of large cannons, which he designed for the Monitor.
Emerson Etheridge (1819-1902) was a U.S. Representative from Tennesseefrom 1853-1857 and again from 1859-March 3, 1861, and serves as the Clerk of the House from 1861-1863. He spoke eloquently in Congress in opposition to secession and remains loyal to the Union.
Clement A. (Anselm) Evans (1833-1911) was a Georgia politician, preacher, historian and a prolific author. When Lincoln was elected president in 1860, Evans organized a company of militia and he was commissioned as major of the 31st Georgia Infantry in November 1861. He was promoted to colonel in May 1862 and fought in the Seven Days Battles, the Second Battle of Bull Run (Manassas), Antietam, and the first Battle of Fredericksburg. In 1864 he will be promoted to brigadier general. Evans survived five wounds during the War and became an influential Methodist minister after the War. The University of Wisconsin-River Falls library has Evans’ Confederate Military History: A Library of Confederate States History, in Twelve Volumes, written by “distinguished men of the South,” and edited by “Gen. Clement A. Evans of Georgia” (E 484 .E9 1962).
Nathan George (“Shanks”) Evans (1824-1868) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer until he resigned in 1861 to join the Confederacy. Evans’ exhibited good tactical leadership and bravery in battle, yet his abrasive personality and his love of whiskey led to problems with colleagues and superiors. He was assisted in defending the coastal areas just south of Charleston. Evans was placed in command of the First Military District, which included Secessionville, just two days before the battle there, but he played little part in the battle.
Richard S. (Stoddert) Ewell (1817-1872) was a career military officer who graduated from West Point. He served in the Mexican War, and later skirmished with Cochise and the Apaches in New Mexico Territory in 1859. Ewell resigned his U.S. Army commission when his home state of Virginia seceded and was appointed a colonel of cavalry, being promoted to a brigadier general fairly quickly. In January of 1862, Ewell was promoted to major general, and served under Stonewall Jackson during the Valley Campaign.
Cassius Fairchild (1829-1868) was the colonel of the 16th Wisconsin Infantry, and brother of Lucius Fairchild, Wisconsin’s governor from 1866-1872.
When the Civil War broke out, “Fairchild was a member of the Governor’s Guard, a local militia. He was commissioned major in the 16th Wisconsin Infantry in October, 1861, and promoted that fall to lieutenant colonel. His regiment left for the South on March 18, 1862. Three weeks later, Fairchild was commanding new recruits at the Battle of Shiloh. On the first day of battle, April 6, 1862, he was shot in the thigh and had to leave the field. He spent the next year in Madison undergoing surgery and recovering slowly from the wound.
“Fairchild returned to his regiment in May 1863 in time to participate in the Siege of Vicksburg, but his injury limited his role. He took part in the capture of Vicksburg in the summer of 1863 and the subsequent Union advance through the South.
“He was made colonel of his regiment on March 17, 1864, and led it through the battles of Kennesaw Mountain and Atlanta, and Sherman’s March to the Sea in 1864. He was brevetted a brigadier general on March 13, 1865, and was mustered out six weeks later.”
He died at age 39, on October 24, 1868, of complications from the wound he had received at Shiloh.
For more information:
- Col. Cassius Fairchild entry in the Dictionary of Wisconsin History.
Lucius Fairchild (1831-1896) is remembered as a colonel in the Iron Brigade, as Wisconsin’s 10th governor (1866-1872), and as a U.S. diplomat during the late 19th century.
“Five days after the Confederates attacked on Fort Sumter on April 12, 1861, Fairchild was appointed captain of Co. K of the 1st Wisconsin Regiment. After three months of service around Washington, D.C., the regiment was disbanded. Fairchild accepted the appointment as a major in the 2nd Wisconsin Infantry and immediately rose to lieutenant colonel. A year later, on August 30, 1862, he was named colonel of the regiment, just as it entered its fiercest battles.
“Fairchild commanded troops in several of these battles, including Second Bull Run, Antietam, Chancellorsville, and Gettysburg. At Gettysburg, while he was leading a charge from Seminary Ridge to McPherson’s Ridge on July 1, 1863, he was hit by a ball that shattered his left arm, which had to be amputated. Shortly before he was mustered out of service, he was promoted to brigadier general.”
Fairchild was elected Wisconsin Secretary of State and served from 1864-1866. In 1865 he was elected governor and served three successive terms, from 1866-1872. As governor, Fairchild was active in promoting soldiers’ aid.
For more information:
- Gov. Lucius Fairchild entry in the Dictionary of Wisconsin History
- Sam Ross’ The Empty Sleeve: A Biography of Lucius Fairchild (F 586 .F3 R6 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
David G. (Glasgow) Farragut (1801-1870), who grew up in a naval family, was a flag officer in the U.S. Navy during the Civil War. For taking New Orleans, a decisive event in the war, Congress created the rank of rear admiral for him on July 16, 1862. Farragut is known in popular culture for his order at the Battle of Mobile Bay (August 5, 1864), usually paraphrased: “Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!”
John B. (Buchanan) Floyd (1806-1863) was the 24th U.S. Secretary of War from March 6, 1857-December 29, 1860. (His predecessor in that position was Jefferson Davis and his successor was Joseph Holt.) President Buchanan requested his resignation on December 29, 1860. His resignation was precipitated by the refusal of Buchanan to order Major Robert Anderson to abandon Fort Sumter. On January 27, 1861, he was indicted for conspiracy and fraud. Floyd appeared in court in Washington, D.C., on March 7, 1861, to answer the charges against him, but the indictments were thrown out on a technicality. After the charges were thrown out he served in the Confederate army as a major general in the Provisional Army of Virginia.
Floyd is perhaps best known as the Confederate general who lost the crucial Battle of Fort Donelson in February of 1862. Floyd had enough political influence to be appointed a brigadier general, but had almost no military experience. At Fort Donelson, in western Tennessee, he deferred to his more experienced subordinates, Gideon J. Pillow and Simon Bolivar Buckner. When it became clear that the Confederates were going to loose Fort Donelson, Floyd turned his command over to Pillow, who immediately turned it over to Buckner. Concerned that he would be arrested for treason if captured by the Union Army, Floyd then escaped to Nashville. Jefferson Davis relieved him of command on March 11, 1862.
Andrew H. (Hull) Foote (1806-1863), a career naval officer, commanded the Mississippi River Squadron from 1861 to 1862. He will organize and lead the gunboat flotilla in the capture of Forts Henry (February 6, 1862), Donelson (February 11-16, 1862), and Island No. 10 (February 28-April 8, 1862). Foote was wounded in action at Fort Donelson, and later in 1862 he was promoted to rear admiral.
Nathan B. (Bedford) Forrest (1821-1877) had amassed a fortune prior to the Civil War as a planter, real estate investor, and slave trader. He was one of the few officers in either army to enlist as a private and be promoted to a general. Forrest lacked formal military education, but he had a gift for strategy and tactics, and was an innovative cavalry leader. After the War, he served as the first Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan.
John G. (Gray) Foster (1823-1874) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer who served as an engineer in the Mexican War. When the Civil War began, Foster was in command of the garrison at Fort Moultrie. He immediately transferred his troops to Fort Sumter and became second-in-command to Major Robert Anderson. He was appointed a brigadier general of volunteers in October of 1861 and commanded a brigade in General Burnside’s North Carolina Expedition. Foster commanded the Department of North Carolina from 1862 to December 1863.
Gustavus V. (Vasa) Fox (1821-1883), a U.S. Navy officer in the Mexican War, becomes the Assistant Secretary of the Navy on August 1, 1861, and serves until November 1866. At the opening of the Civil War, President Lincoln gives him a temporary appointment in the Navy and sends him with the Baltic, the steamer sent to resupply Fort Sumter.
William B. (Buel) Franklin (1823-1903) graduated first in his class from West Point and was a career military officer, serving in the Mexican War. He constructed lighthouses on the Atlantic Coast and in 1859 took over as the engineer supervising the construction of the U.S. Capitol dome. In the Civil War he rose to the rank of a corps commander in the Army of the Potomac, fighting in several notable early battles in the Eastern Theater. Franklin, a staunch supporter of General McClellan, fell victim to the political intrigue that swept the Union Army and he will resign in early 1863. In 1864 he will be reassigned to corps command in the Department of the Gulf and will be wounded at the Battle of Mansfield, a disability that will limit his army career.
John C. (Charles) Frémont (1813-1890) was a U.S. military officer, and explorer, the first presidential candidate of the new Republican Party in 1856 (losing to James Buchanan), and the Radical Republicans’ presidential candidate in 1864. Frémont led multiple survey expeditions in the American West and his “Report and Map” published by Congress guided thousands of emigrants to Oregon and California. He served as a lietuentant colonel in California during the Mexican-American War, capturing both Santa Barbara and Los Angeles. In the Civil War he serves as a major general, including a controversial term as commander of the Army’s Department of the West, May-Novembmer 1861. In March 1862 Frémont takes command of the Mountain Department of the Army, which included Virginia, Tennessee, and Kentucky. When the Army of Virginia is created in June of that year and command given to John Pope, Frémont declines to serve and ends up siting out the rest of the war.
The UWRF Chalmer Davee Library has the following books on John C. Frémont:
- Frémont, Explorer for a Restless Nation, by Ferol Egan (E 415.9 .F8 E33 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
- Lincoln, Master of Men: A Study in Character, by Alonzo Rothschild (E 457 .R84 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library); digitally available on Google Books.
- Report of the Exploring Expedition to the Rocky Mountains, by John C. Frémont, Senate Executive document 174, (F 592 .F822 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
William Henry French (1815-1881) was a career military officer, a graduate of West Point and an aide-de-camp to several generals in the Mexican War. During the Seminole War, French argued with Stonewall Jackson and the two filed numerous charges against each other. French co-authored Instruction for Field Artillery, published in 1860, along with William F. Barry and Henry J. Hunt. In the Peninsula Campaign of the Civil War, he was engaged at the battles of Yorktown, Seven Pines, Oak Grove, Gaines’ Mill, Garnett’s & Golding’s Farm, Savage’s Station, Glendale, and Malvern Hill, and he received praise in official reports for his actions and leadership. French commanded the 3rd Division of the II Corps at the Battle of Antietam, making the first attack on the Confederate Division in the Sunken Road. He had just been promoted to major general in November, 1862 and led his division in the battle of Fredericksburg. He will also lead his division at the battles of Chancellorsville and Gettysburg, but his military reputation will be ruined during the Mine Run Campaign in November 1863 when Major General George G. Meade claimed that French’s corps moved too slowly to exploit a potential advantage over General Robert E. Lee.
Max Friedman (1825- ) was the colonel of the 5th Cavalry/65th Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers. They, too, had just arrived in Washington, having left Philadelphia on August 22nd.
James Barnet Fry (1827-1894) graduated from West Point and was a career military officer. In 1861 he was General Irvin McDowell’s chief of staff and in 1862 held a similar position under General Don Carlos Buell. Fry was the last provost marshal general of the United States from 1863 to 1866. That office was abolished at the end of the Civil War. After the War he served as adjutant general. Fry was a prolific author of historical books, including several on the Civil War.
E. W. Fuller was a veteran gunboat commander and was the captain of the CSS Queen of the West. He was called the “John Paul Jones of the South.”
Augustus Hill Garland (1832-1899) represented Pulaski County, Arkansas, at the secession convention in 1861. He later served in both the Confederate House of Representatives and Senate.
Augustus Gaylord (1826-1901) was a merchant in Saint Croix Falls and Polk County treasurer. In 1860, when Louis P. Harvey was elected Secretary of State, he hired Gaylord to be his confidential clerk, and Gaylord relocated to Madison. In early 1861, then-Governor Harvey appointed him adjutant general for Wisconsin, an office he will retained throughout the war.
John White Geary (1819-1873), was the colonel of the 28th Pennsylvania Infantry. He had been the first mayor San Francisco (1850-1851), the third territorial governor of Kansas (1856-1857), and will be the 16th governor of Pennsylvania (1867-1873). In early 1862 he was in command of the district of the upper Potomac River, where he was wounded and captured near Leesburg, Virginia, on March 8, 1862. He was immediately exchanged, returned to duty, and was promoted to brigadier general. He was given command of a brigade in Major General Nathaniel Banks’s corps, which he led against Stonewall Jackson’s army in the Shenandoah Valley. In late June, his brigade joined Major General John Pope’s Army of Virginia. On August 9, 1862, Geary led his brigade at the Battle of Cedar Mountain, where he was seriously wounded. After recovering from his wounds he returned to duty on October 15 as a division commander, the corps was now part of the Army of the Potomac under Major General Henry W. Slocum.
George Washington Getty (1819-1901), a graduate of West Point and career military officer most noted for his role as a division commander in the Army of the Potomac during the final full year of the Civil War. Early in the Civil War, he was General Ambrose E. Burnside’s chief of Artillery. In September 1862 he was promoted to brigadier general of volunteers and assigned to the infantry. At the Battle of Fredericksburg in December 1862 he commanded the Third Division of the IX Corps. Wounded at the Battle of the Wilderness, he recovered and led his troops during the lengthy Siege of Petersburg, and later in Sheridan’s Shenandoah Valley Campaign. In 1879, Getty was a member of the Board of Conduct which exonerated General Fitz John Porter.
John Gibbon (1827-1896) was a career United States Army officer who served in the Mexican War, but without seeing combat, and in the Indian Wars. In 1862, he was appointed brigadier general of volunteers and commanded (Rufus) “King’s Wisconsin Brigade.” Gibbon ordered them to wear white leggings and distinctive black Hardee hats, which earned them the nickname the “Black Hat Brigade.” He commanded the brigade during their strong uphill charge at the Battle of South Mountain, where General Joseph Hooker exclaimed that the men “fought like iron.” From then on, they were known as the “Iron Brigade of the West.” Gibbon led the brigade for the last time at the Battle of Antietam (September 17, 1862), where he personally manned an artillery piece in the bloody fighting at the Cornfield. Gibbon was promoted to command a division at the Battle of Fredericksburg (December 1862), where he was wounded. Gibbon returned for the Battle of Chancellorsville (April 30-May 6, 1863), but his division was in reserve and saw little action. At the Battle of Gettysburg (July 1-3, 1863), he commanded the 2nd Division of the II Corps, which bore the brunt of fighting during the defense against Pickett’s Charge, when Gibbon was again wounded. Gibbon was back in command of the 2nd Division at the battles of the Wilderness (May 5-7, 1864), Spotsylvania Court House (May 8-21, 1864), and Cold Harbor (May 31-June 12, 1864). In 1865, he He led his troops during the Appomattox Campaign and blocked the Confederate escape route at the Battle of Appomattox Courthouse (April 9, 1865); he was one of the three commissioners for the surrender of Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia. After the War, Gibbon stayed in the army and fought Dakota Indians in eastern Montana, arriving the day after the Battle of the Little Bighorn, and the Nez Perce Indians at the Battle of the Big Hole in western Montana.
Quincy Adams Gillmore (1825-1888) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer, serving as an engineer in constructing the fortifications at Hampton Roads and as an instructor of Practical Military Engineering at West Point. He is best known for his actions in the Union victory at Fort Pulaski, where his modern rifled artillery readily pounded the fort’s exterior stone walls, an action that essentially rendered stone fortifications obsolete. He earned an international reputation as an organizer of siege operations and helped revolutionize the use of naval gunnery. At the Battle of Fort Pulaski, Gillmore was breveted a brigadier and later he became a major general of volunteers. A brilliant member of the U.S. Army’s Corps of Engineers, Gillmore was described by newspaper correspondent Whitelaw Reid as “a quick-speaking, quick-moving, soldierly man . . . a fine, wholesome looking, solid six footer, with big head, broad, good humored face, and a high forehead faintly elongated by a suspicion of baldness, curly brown hair and beard, and a frank open face.”
For more information:
- See the Battle for Fort Pulaski on the National Park Service website for the Fort Pulaski National Monument
John Adams Gilmer (1805-1868) was a U.S. Representative from North Carolina from 1857-March 3, 1861. He served as a member of the 2nd Confederate Congress in 1864.
Willis Arnold Gorman (1816-1876) was the 2nd Territorial Governor of Minnesota from 1853-1857. In 1859, Gorman was elected to the Minnesota state legislature. During the 1860 presidential campaign, he vigorously supported his personal friend, Stephen A. Douglas. Gorman enlists in the 1st Minnesota Volunteers in 1861 and is appointed colonel. Due to his gallant service at the Battle of Bull Run, he is made a brigadier general on October 1, 1861. Gorman also led his troops at Antietam, the bloodiest battle of the Civil War.
For more information:
- See the Willis Arnold Gorman entry in the Minnesota Historical Society’s “Governors of Minnesota” website.
Gordon Granger (1822-1876) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer. He was promoted to brigadier general in March of 1862 and commanded the Cavalry Division in the Union’s Army of the Mississippi during the Battle of New Madrid and the Siege of Cornith. He is most famous for his actions commanding the Reserve Corps at the Battle of Chickamauga on September 20, 1863.
Ulysses S. Grant (1822-1885) was a career military officer who had fought in the Mexican War. He resigned from the Army in 1854, but quickly joined the Union Army after the outbreak of the Civil War. Early in the war he trained new regiments and then engaging the Confederacy near Cairo, Illinois. The Battle of Belmont was the first combat test for then-brigadier general Grant. In 1862, he fought a series of major battles and captured a Confederate army, earning a reputation as an aggressive general.
For more information:
- McClellan, Sherman, and Grant, by T. Harry Williams, 1962 (E 467 .W5 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
- April 30, 1862, post: Who Are the Union’s Western Generals?
Horace Greeley (1811-1872) was editor of the New York Tribune and is best known for his 1865 editorial where he advised “Go West, young man, go West and grow up with the country.” Greeley made the Tribune an unofficial organ of the Republican Party. He took a hard line against slavery and secession.
Martin Edwin Green (1815-1863), a colonel in the Missouri State Guard (Confederate) at this point. He had been a leading secessionist and key organizer of the State Guard in northern Missouri. Green will be commissioned a Confederate brigadier general in 1862.
Alfred Burton Greenwood (1811-1889) was President Buchanan’s Commissioner of Indian Affairs from 1859 to May 13, 1861. Once the War break out, Greenwood becomes a member of the Congress of the Confederate States.
Walter Q. (Quintin) Gresham (1832-1895) was a lawyer and a member of the Indiana House of Representatives before the War. He was commissioned lieutenant colonel of the 38th Indiana Infantry in September 1861, and in December of that year, he was promoted to colonel and placed in command of the 53rd Indiana Infantry. The 53rd Indiana subsequently took part in Grant’s Tennessee campaign of 1862, including the Siege of Corinth and Battle of Vicksburg. During the Siege of Vicksburg, Colonel Gresham commanded a brigade. In August 1863 he was appointed brigadier general of volunteers, and was placed in command of the Federal forces at Natchez, Mississippi. In 1864 he commanded a division of the XVII Corps in Sherman’s Atlanta Campaign, and before the Battle of Atlanta, on July 20, he received a gunshot wound to his knee that left him lame for life. After the War Gresham served as the 31st U.S. Postmaster General (1883-1884), the 35th U.S. Secretary of the Treasury (1884), a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals (1891-1893), and the 33rd U.S. Secretary of State (1893-1895). He was also twice a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination.
Benjamin Henry Grierson (1826-1911) was a music teacher and band leader in Illinois before the war. In 1861 he joined the 6th Illinois Cavalry and was promoted to colonel in 1862. In November of that year he became a brigade commander in the Cavalry Division of the Army of the Tennessee, and in December he participated in the pursuit of Confederate General Earl Van Dorn after his Holly Springs raid. Grierson is best known for Grierson’s Raid, an 1863 diversionary expedition through Confederate-held territory that severed enemy communication lines. Grierson left La Grange, Tennessee, on April 17, 1863. After the War, Grierson organized the 10th U.S. Cavalry, one of two mounted regiments composed of Black soldiers and white officers, called the Buffalo Soldiers.
Charles Griffin (1825-1867), a graduate of West Point and career military officer, his leadership abilities brought him steady promotion. Assigned command of a division in the V Corps, he served at the Battle of Fredericksburg and during the Chancellorsville Campaign.
James Wilson Grimes (1816-1872) was the third governor of Iowa (1854-1858) and a U.S. senator from Iowa (1859-1869). In February 1861 he had been a member of the Peace Conference held in Washington, D.C., a final effort to prevent what became the Civil War. After the Civil War, Grimes serves on the Joint Committee on Reconstruction, which drafted the 14th Amendment to the Constitution. During the impeachment trial of President Andrew Johnson, Grimes was one of seven Republican senators (along with Lyman Trumbull) to break party ranks and vote for acquittal.
Norman Jonathan Hall (1837-1867), a career military officer, had been appointed to West Point by Jefferson Davis. Hall was serving at Fort Sumter when the Civil War began and acted as an emissary for the fort early in the standoff. At one point in the artillery bombardment, the United States flag was knocked to the ground by a Confederate shell, Hall raced through across the parade ground to save the flag, and, with the help of two fellow soldiers, replaced the pole and hoisted “Old Glory” over the battered fort. In July 1862 Hall became colonel of the 7th Michigan Infantry, leading it during the Second Battle of Bull Run, at Antietam and Fredericksburg, where he volunteered to lead his men across the pontoon bridges. Despite these exploits, Hall is most noted for his defense of his sector of the Union line against Pickett’s Charge during the Battle of Gettysburg.
Henry Wager Halleck (1815-1872) was a graduate of West Point and served in the Mexican War. After the Mexican War, he was assigned to duty in California where he became one of the principal authors of California’s consitution in 1849. At the beginning of the Civil War, Halleck was best known as a military scholar and he became known as “Old Brains” (a sobriquet that became derogatory during the Civil War). He became a major general in the regular army, effective August 19, 1861, making him the fourth most senior general in the Army (behind Winfield Scott, McClellan, and John C. Frémont). He was put in command of the Department of the Missouri in November 1861, where he cleaned up the mess that had been left behind by Frémont.
For more information:
- Commanding Generals and Chiefs of Staff, 1775-2010: Portraits & Biographical Sketches of the United States Army’s Senior Officer [including Henry Wager Halleck], by William Gardner Bell (D 114:2:G 28/775-2010 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library’s Federal Government Documents collection)
- Elements of Military Art and Science; or, Course of Instruction in Strategy, Fortification, Tactics of Battles, &c.; Embracing the Duties of Staff, Infantry, Cavalry, Artillery, and Engineers. Adapted to the Use of Volunteers and Militia, by H. W. Halleck, 1971 reprint of the 1846 edition (U102 .H18 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
- General George H. Thomas: The Indomitable Warrior, Wilber Thomas (E 467.1 .T4 T34 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
- Halleck: Lincoln’s Chief of Staff, by Stephen E. Ambrose (E 467.1 .T4 T34 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
- April 30, 1862, post: Who Are the Union’s Western Generals?
Henry Augustus Hambright (1819-1893) was colonel of the 79th Pennsylvania Infantry. Before the war he had served as 1st Lieutenant in Company G, 2nd Pennsylvania Infantry, during Mexican War; as a public works contractor; supervisor of operations in Lancaster for the Pennsylvania Railroad; and captain of the Jackson Rifles militia company.
For more information:
- See the “Lancaster at War” blog, Better Know an Officer: Henry A. Hambright.
Winfield Scott Hancock (1824-1886) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer who served in the Mexican War. He earned his nickname of “Hancock the Superb” by leading a critical counterattack in the Battle of Williamsburg (General McClellan telegraphed to Washington that “Hancock was superb today”). Hancock will go on to be a hero at Gettysburg in 1863.
For more information:
- History of U.S. Political Parties, edited by Arthur M. Schlesinger, includes an Interview with Gen. Winfield S. Hancock (JK 2261 .S35 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
Isham Green Harris (1818-1897) was the Governor of Tennessee from 1857-1862. As governor, he decided not to respond to President Lincoln’s call for troops at the start of the War and helped Tennessee to secede; it was the last state to join the Confederacy. Once Lincoln appoints Andrew Johnson the military governor of Tennessee on March 12,1862, Harris will cease making any effort to function as the state’s executive. Although he never formally resigned as governor, Harris then served as a staff officer in the Confederate Army. After the War, Harris will serve as a U.S. Senator from Tennessee from 1877 to his death in 1897.
Louis Powell Harvey (1820-1862) was the governor of Wisconsin for three months in 1862. Prior to being elected governor, he helped to organize the Republican Party in 1854, and was a state senator from 1854-1857. He served as the Wisconsin secretary of state from 1860-1862 Harvey took office as governor in January 1862, and while on an inspection trip to visit wounded Wisconsin soldiers after the Battle of Shiloh, he accidentally drowned on April 19, 1862, in the Tennessee River.
For more information, see:
- Gov. Louis P. Harvey entry in the Dictionary of Wisconsin History.
- Wisconsin Historical Society’s portrait of Louis P. Harvey.
Samuel Dexter Hastings (1816-1903) was state assemblyman from Geneva (1849) and from Trempealeau (1857), and was state treasurer (1858-1866). In 1882 he was the unsuccessful Prohibition candidate for Congress, and in 1884 was again unsuccessful in his bid for the governorship. He is, however, best known for his championship of abolition and prohibition. For more on Hastings, see his entry in the Dictionary of Wisconsin History.
John Porter Hatch (1822-1901) graduated from West Point and was a career military officer, serving in the Mexican War, in Oregon Territory, and on the frontier. When the Civil War broke out, Hatch was ordered back East and assigned to George B. McClellan’s cavalry. In September 1861 he was promoted to brigadier general of volunteers. Hatch’s brigade made a series of daring raids on enemy positions near the Rapidan and Rappahannock rivers, which earned his brigade the nickname “Iron Brigade.” After incurring the wrath of General John Pope for two failed cavalry raids, he was reassigned to the infantry. He commanded a brigade, and assumed division command after General Rufus King fell ill the evening before the Second Battle of Bull Run. Hatch led the division there and at the Battle of South Mountain, where he was shot in the leg. Hatch received the Medal of Honor in 1893 for his gallantry under severe enemy fire at the Battle of South Mountain.
Arthur Peronneau Hayne (1788-1867) was a U.S. Senator from South Carolina from May to December of 1858. He had served in the War of 1812 and was brevetted lieutenant colonel at New Orlenas. Hayne was the older brother of Robert Young Hayne, also a U.S. Senator and Governor of South Carolina, famous for the Webster-Hayne Debate over states’ rights; and cousin of Isaac W. Hayne, Attorney General of South Carolina.
Harry T. (Thompson) Hays (1820-1876) served in the Mexican War and was a lawyer and politician in Louisiana before the Civil War. He entered the Confederate Army as colonel of the 7th Louisiana Infantry. Hays fought at the First Battle of Bull Run, in the Shenandoah Valley Campaign in 1862, and was severely wounded at the Battle of Port Republic. Hays was promoted to brigadier general in July 1862 and assigned command of the First Louisiana Brigade, which was known as the “Louisiana Tigers.” Hays lost half of his brigade at the Battle of Antietam, and also fought at Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville. At the Battle of Gettysburg, Hays and his brigade charged up Cemetery Hill in the twilight and overran several artillery batteries before being driven off for lack of support. He was briefly captured in November 1863, at Rappahannock Station, but escaped. He lost a third of his remaining men at the Battle of the Wilderness (May 5, 1864). Hays was badly wounded at Spotsylvania Court House. On May 10, 1865, Hays was promoted to major general, but with the demise of the Confederacy, his promotion was never formally approved. After the war Hays returned to New Orleans where he played a prominent role in the July 1866 New Orleans Riot. He deputized nearly two hundred of his former soldiers as the “Hays Brigade Relief Society.”
Hans Christian Heg (1829-1863), from Waterford, was born in Norway and moved with his family to Wisconsin as a youngster. As an adult, Heg became a rising young politician who became an ardent member of first the Free Soil Party and later the recently-reformed Republican Party. He was the first Norwegian born candidate elected state-wide in Wisconsin. He was an outspoken anti-slavery activist and a leader of Wisconsin’s Wide Awakes, an anti-slave catcher militia. Heg was a major in the 4th Wisconsin Militia and served as Wisconsin State Prison Commissioner. When the Civil War began, Wisconsin Governor Alexander Randall appointed Heg as colonel of the 15th Wisconsin Volunteer Regiment. The 15th Wisconsin was called the Scandinavian Regiment since its soldiers were almost all immigrants from Norway, with some from Denmark and Sweden. It was the only all Scandinavian regiment in the Union Army. Heg and the 15th Wisconsin fought in the battles of Perryville, Stones River, and Chickamauga, where he was mortally wounded. For more on Heg, including a photograph, see the Dictionary of Wisconsin History.
Samuel Peter Heintzelman (1805-1880) was a career military officer who graduated from West Point and served in the Seminole War, the Mexican War, the Yuma War, and the Cortina Troubles. At the beginning of the Civil War, he was the colonel of the 17th Pennsylvania Infantry, but was soon promoted to command a division in the Army of Northeastern Virginia. He was wounded at the First Battle of Bull Run, but quickly recovered. He commanded the III Corps of the Army of the Potomac in the Peninsula Campaign and at the Second Battle of Bull Run.
Francis Jay Herron (1827-1902) was a banker in Dubuque, Iowa, before the Civil War. In 1859, he organized and was the captain of a militia company known as the “Governor’s Grays.” In April 1861 he was appointed captain of the 1st Iowa Infantry and served with Nathaniel Lyon in Missouri, participating in the battles of Boonville and Wilson’s Creek. In August 1861 he was promoted to lieutenant colonel of the 9th Iowa Infantry and fought at the Battle of Pea Ridge, where he was wounded and taken prisoner. After being exchanged, Herron was promoted to brigadier general of volunteers, and later received the Medal of Honor for his actions at Pea Ridge. Herron joined forces with James G. Blunt to engage Thomas C. Hindman in the Battle of Prairie Grove and forced the Confederates to abandon western Arkansas. For his actions at Prairie Grove, Herron was appointed major general of volunteers, becoming the youngest major general on either side at the time of his promotion. During the Siege of Vicksburg, Herron’s division was placed on the extreme left flank of the Union lines. Upon the surrender of the city Ulysses S. Grant chose Herron, along with generals James B. McPherson and John A. Logan, to lead the procession into the city and accept the formal surrender of arms on July 4, 1863. Herron next led the Yazoo City expedition, capturing the city, a Confederate fleet, and supplies there. After the War, Herron stayed in Baton Rouge where he was tax collector for a district in New Orleans and served as a United States Marshal (1867-1869). He was the Secretary of State of Louisiana before moving to New York City in 1877, where he practiced law and served as a banker, but died a pauper in 1902.
Alexander Henry (1823-1883) was the mayor of Philadelphia from 1858-1865. Henry will lead the city throughout the Civil War, playing key roles in the recruitment of troops from Philadelphia, and planning for the defense of the city, especially around the Gettysburg Campaign in June of 1863.
Thomas Holliday Hicks (1798-1865) was the 31st governor of Maryland, 1858-1862, and then U.S. Senator from Maryland, from 1862 until his death in 1865. Despite his early sympathies for the South, Hicks helped prevent Maryland from seceding, which would have put Washington, D.C., in Confederate territory. Hicks was elected governor in 1857 as a member of the Know-Nothing Party.
A. P. (Ambrose Powell) Hill, Jr. (1825-1865) graduated from West Point and was a career military officer. He served briefly in the Mexican War and in the Seminole Wars. A Virginian, he chose to fight for the Confederacy in the Civil War. He gained early fame as the commander of the “Light Division” in the Seven Days Battles and became one of Stonewall Jackson’s ablest subordinates, distinguishing himself in the 1862 battles of Cedar Mountain (August 9), Second Bull Run (August 28-30), Antietam (September 17) , and Fredericksburg (December 11-15). Following Jackson’s death in 1863, Hill was promoted and given command of the Third Corps in the Army of Northern Virginia, which he led at the Battle of Gettysburg and until he was killed on April 2, 1865, at the Third Battle of Petersburg. Two interesting notes: he was once engaged to the woman that George B. McClellan eventually married, and when Hill did marry, it was to the sister of John Hunt Morgan, who was his best man at the wedding.
Benjamin Harvey Hill (1823-1882) was active in Georgia state politics as a member of the Know Nothing Party. Hill is the only non-Democratic member of the Georgia secession convention in January of 1861. He, along with Alexander Stephens, spoke publicly against the dissolution of the Union. Ultimately, Hill votes for secession, becomes a political ally of Jefferson Davis, is a member of the Confederate Provisional Congress, and is elected to the Confederate States Senate, a term which he held throughout its existence.
D. H. (Daniel Harvey) Hill (1821-1889) was Stonewall Jackson’s brother-in-law and a close friend of both James Longstreet and Joe Johnston. He was a graduate of West Point and served with distinction in the Mexican War. He resigned his commission in 1849 to be a mathematics professor. When the War broke out he joined the Confederacy and, as colonel of the 1st North Carolina Infantry, he won the Battle of Big Bethel in 1861. He participated in the Yorktown and Williamsburg operations at the start of the Peninsula Campaign. As a major general, Hill led a division with great distinction in the Battle of Seven Pines and the Seven Days Battles.
Thomas Carmichael Hindman (1828-1868) served in the Mexican War, then studied law and practiced first in Mississippi and then in Helena, Arkansas. He served in the Mississippi House of Representatives (1854-1856) and in the U.S. House of Representatives from Arkansas (1859-1861). After Arkansas seceded, Hindman joined the Confederate army, was promoted brigadier general in 1861 and was slightly wounded at the Battle of Shiloh (April 1862). Later in 1862 he was promoted to major general and commanded the Trans-Mississippi Department, which he used to try to prevent a Union invasion of Arkansas. His tactics were not popular with the citizens and in August 1862 he was replaced. But he convinced his replacement to give him a command in northern Arkansas where he managed to intercept the Federal army, but his self-doubt led to a missed opportunity to destroy the Union army. After the War he fled to Mexico, later returning to Helena, Arkansas, where he was assassinated in 1868.
Robert F. (Frederick) Hoke (1837-1912) graduated from the Kentucky Military Institute in 1854 and then managed his family’s business interests. When North Carolina seceded from the Union in 1861, Hoke enlisted in the 1st North Carolina Infantry and was commissioned a second lieutenant, but promoted to captain within months. Hoke was commended for “coolness, judgment and efficiency” at the Battle of Big Bethel (June 10, 1861) by General D. H. Hill, and subsequently promoted to major. Next he was appointed lieutenant colonel of the 33rd North Carolina Regiment, and cited for gallantry at the Battle of New Bern (March 14, 1862). Hoke was promoted to colonel, and fought at the Second Battle of Bull Run (August 28-30, 1862) and the Battle of Antietam (September 17, 1862). Hoke commanded a brigade, known as Hoke’s Brigade, at the Battle of Fredericksburg (December 11-15, 1862), and was promoted to brigadier general on January 17, 1863. He was severely wounded defending Marye’s Heights in the Battle of Chancellorsville and was sent home to recuperate, missing the rest of the campaigns for that year. Hoke and his division played a decisive role in the Confederate victory in the Battle of Cold Harbor in 1864 (May 31-June 12).
Theophilus Hunter Holmes (1804-1880) commanded the Confederate District of Arkansas. He planned a coordinated attack from three sides on the formidable Federal fortifications surrounding Helena. He wanted prevent Helena being used as a Union base for attacking further into Arkansas, and he also was attempting to relieve pressure on Vicksburg. Holmes graduated from West Point and was a career military officer. His father was a former governor of North Carolina and U.S. congressman from that state. Early in the Civil War he commanded coastal defenses in North Carolina and served as a brigadier general of North Carolina militia.
Joseph Holt (1807-1894) was the 18th U.S. Postmaster General from March 9, 1859-December 31, 1860, and the 25th U.S. Secretary of War from January 18-March 5, 1861. The Buchanan administration was shaken in December 1860 and January 1861, when the Confederacy was formed and many cabinet members resigned, including John B. Floyd of Virginia who resigned as Secretary of War. But Holt was anti-slavery and a strong supporter of the Union, and Buchanan appointed him Secretary of War. He served in that capacity until the end of Buchanan’s presidency, when President Lincoln replaced him with Simon Cameron. Lincoln appointed Holt Judge Advocate General of the United State Army in 1862, and as such he was the presiding judge in the trial of the accused conspirators in Lincoln’s assassination.
John Bell Hood (1831-1879) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer, but at the start of the Civil War chose to fight for his adopted state of Texas. During the Seven Days Battles in 1862, he earned a reputation for aggressive leadership as a brigade commander and was rewarded with a promotion to division commander. He led a division under General James Longstreet during the rest of 1862 into 1863. At the Battle of Gettysburg he was severely wounded and lost the use of his left arm. At the Battle of Chickamauga he was wounded again and his right leg was amputated. Hood returned to field service during the Atlanta Campaign in 1864. He was defeated at the Battle of Franklin (November 30, 1864) and at the Battle of Nashville (December 15-16, 1864). After the War, Hood moved to Louisiana and worked as a cotton broker and in the insurance business. He died in a yellow fever epidemic in New Orleans in 1879.
Joseph Hooker (1814-1879) was a graduate of West Point and career military officer until 1853 when he resigned. He returned as a brigadier general at the beginning of the Civil War and distinguished himself in the Battle of Williamsburg, receiving a promotion to major general as a result. As a corps commander, he led the initial Union attacks at the Battle of Antietam, in which he was wounded. Following the Battle of Fredericksburg, he was given command of the Army of the Potomac. Hooker planned an audacious campaign against Robert E. Lee, but he was defeated by the Confederate Army at the Battle of Chancellorsville. Hooker began to pursue Lee at the start of the Gettysburg Campaign, but his poor performance at Chancellorsville prompted President Abraham Lincoln to relieve him from command just prior to the Battle of Gettysburg. In November 1863, Hooker helped relieve the besieged Union Army at Chattanooga, Tennessee, and achieved an important victory at the Battle of Lookout Mountain during the Chattanooga Campaign. On May 4, 1865, Hooker led President Lincoln’s funeral procession in Springfield, Illinois. Hooker retired from the army in 1868.
Oliver O. (Otis) Howard (1830-1909) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer. In the Civil War he suffered two humiliating defeats, at Chancellorsville and Gettysburg, but he recovered his reputation while posted in the Western Theater. Howard became known as the “Christian general” because he tried to base his policy decisions on his deep religious beliefs. After the War, during the Reconstruction era,he was in charge of the Freedmen’s Bureau, which had the mission of integrating the freed slaves into Southern society. He was also a leader in promoting higher education for freedmen, most notably in founding of Howard University in Washington and serving as its president 1867–1873. Later Howard Howard commanded troops in the West, conducting a famous campaign against the Nez Perce tribe.
Benjamin Huger (1805-1877) graduated from West Point and was a career military officer, serving with distinction in the Mexican War. Huger did not resign his commission until after the Battle of Fort Sumter. In the Confederate Army he was appointed a brigadier general and took command of the Department of Norfolk. At the Battle of Roanoke Island in February 1862, Huger’s failure to reinforce the Confederate troops lead to a Union victory. Then the Confederate evacuation of Norfolk was handled poorly by Huger, and the Union controlled Norfolk for the rest of the war.
Andrew A. (Atkinson) Humphreys (1810-1883), a graduate of West Point and career military officer and a civil engineer in the Army. At the Battle of Fredericksburg, his division achieved the farthest advance against fierce Confederate fire from Marye’s Heights. An officer with little combat experience, he inspired his troops with his personal bravery.
David Hunter (1802-1886) was a graduate of West Point and served in the 2nd Seminole War and the Mexican War. In 1860 Hunter began correspondinge with Abraham Lincoln, focusing on his strong anti-slavery views. This relationship garnered him an invitation to ride on Lincoln’s inaugural train. Hunter also was appointed the fourth-ranking brigadier general of volunteers. He was wounded at the 1st Battle of Bull Run in July 1861, in August was promoted to major general of volunteers. He was a division commander under Frémont in the Department of the West.
Hunter’s main claims to fame will be an unauthorized 1862 order emancipating slaves in three Southern states, and as the president of the military commission trying the conspirators involved with the assassination of Lincoln.
Stephen A. (Augustus) Hurlbut (1815-1882) commander of the U.S. Army of the Gulf in the American Civil War. He was a presidential elector for the Whig Party in the 1848 Presidential Election. He was selected to the Illinois House of Representatives in 1859 and again in 1861. Hurlbut joined the Union Army and became a Brigadier General in 1861 and a Major General in 1862. He commanded the 4th division of Army of the Tennesseeat the Battle of Shiloh and in the advance towards Corinth and the subsequent siege.
For more information:
- April 30, 1862, post: Who Are the Union’s Western Generals?
Rugus Ingalls (1818-1893), who graduated from West Point in the same class as Ulysses S. Grant, helped establish effective supply depots for McClellan’s army during the Peninsula Campaign. Following the Peninsula Campaign, he became the chief quartermaster of the Army of the Potomac. He served efficiently during the Northern Virginia and Maryland campaigns, winning praise for his logistics skills.
James W. (William) Jackson (ca. 1824-1861) was the proprietor of the Marshall House, an inn located in Alexandria, Virginia. He killed Elmer E. Ellsworth, the first Union officer to be killed in the Civil War.
Thomas Jonathan “Stonewall” Jackson (1824-1863) is, perhaps, one of the best-known of the Confederate generals and military historians consider him to be one of the most gifted tactical commanders. He had received his famous nickname at the First Battle of Bull Run. By mid-afternoon the battle centered on Henry House Hill and as the Confederate lines began to crumble under heavy Union assault, Jackson’s brigade of Virginia soldiers provided crucial reinforcements. Brigadier General Barnard E. Bee reportedly shouted to his own troops: “There is Jackson standing like a stone wall. Let us determine to die here, and we will conquer. Rally behind the Virginians!”
For more information:
- Gods and Generals, by Jeff Shara (PS 3569 .H18 G63 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
- Mighty Stonewall, by Frank Everson Vandiver (E 467.1 .J15 V3 1989 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
- Stonewall Jackson, by John Esten Cooke (SPL E 467.1 .J15 C66 1893 in the UWRF University Archives & Area Research Center)
- Stonewall Jackson: The Man, the Soldier, the Legend, by James I. Robertson, Jr. (E 467.1 .J15 R63 1997 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
Dr. William Jayne (1826-1916) was the first governor of Dakota Territory. Jayne was the brother-in-law of U.S. Senator Lyman Trumbull, whose first wife, Julia Maria Jayne, had been a close friend of Mary Todd before both of their marriages; Julia had been Mary Todd’s maid of honor at her marriage to Abraham Lincoln in 1842. Dr. Jayne served as Lincoln’s personal physician in Springfield. In March 1861, Lincoln appointed Jayne the first governor of Dakota Territory, and he served in that capacity from May 27, 1861, until 1863, and then served as a delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives from Dakota Territory from March 4, 1863, to June 17, 1864. Jayne then returned to Springfield and resumed his medical practice.
Andrew Johnson (1808-1875) had a long political career before the Civil War. He was a U.S. Representative from Tennessee from 1843–1853; Tennessee’s 17th governor, serving from 1853–1857; a U.S. Senator from Tennessee from October 8, 1857–March 4, 1862; and military governor of Tennessee, 1862-1865.. He was and . He was a major proponent of the Homestead Act (which passes in 1862). He believed the Constitution guaranteed the right to own slaves, but was still devoted to the Union. Johnson was Lincoln’s second vice president, taking office on March 4, 1865, and became president of the U.S. (1865-1869) when Lincoln is assassinated on April 15, 1865. Johnson was impeached on February 24, 1868, in the U.S. House of Representatives, their primary charge being violation of the Tenure of Office Act by removing Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton. Congress had passed the Act the previous year, largely to protect Stanton. Johnson, the first American president to be impeached, was acquitted in the Senate by one vote.
Bradley T. (Tyler) Johnson (1829-1903) served as a general in the Confederate States Army, despite the fact that his home state of Maryland remained loyal to the Union. He commanded the 1st Maryland Infantry, CSA.
Bushrod Johnson (1817-1880) was a teacher before the War and co-chancellor of the University of Nashville after the War. He was one of a handful of Confederate generals who were born and raised in the North. When the War started, he became a colonel of engineers in the Tennessee Militia and then in the Confederate States Army. He was instrumental in the building of Fort Donelson. Two days after the surrender of the Fort, Johnson was able to walk unimpeded through the porous Union Army lines.
For more information:
- Yankee Quaker, Confederate General: The Curious Career of Bushrod Johnson, by Charles M. Cummings (E 467.1 .J6 C8 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
Edward Johnson (1816-1873) was nicknamed “Allegheny Johnson” while commanding six infantry regiments in the Battle of Camp Allegheny on December 13, 1861. He had received the rank of colonel in the 12th Georgia Infantry on July 2, 1861, and the 12th Georgia fought in the battles of Rich Mountain July 11, 1861), Cheat Mountain (September 12-15, 1861), and Greenbrier River (October 3, 1861). He was promoted to brigadier general on December 13, 1861.
George Washington Johnson (1811-1862) During the Civil War, a group of Confederate sympathizers formed a Confederate government for the Commonwealth of Kentucky. While this government never successfully displaced the Union government, it did elect a Confederate governor, here called the “Provisional” governor. The first such governor was , who served from November 20, 1861, to his death on April 8, 1862, at the Battle of Shiloh.
James Johnson (1811-1891) was a U.S. Representative from Georgia from 1851-1853. He is a Unionist and opposes secession. After the Civil War he is appointed the 43rd Governor of Georgia by President Andrew Johnson (no relation) and serves from June to December 1865.
Richard W. (Woodhouse) Johnson (1827-1897) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer, primarily serving on the frontier. In 1861, he was commissioned colonel of the 3rd Kentucky Cavalry, and then brigadier general of U.S. Volunteers. On August 21, 1862, he was defeated and captured by John Hunt Morgan, whom he had been sent to drive out of Tennessee. Of local interest, he died and is buried in Oakland Cemetery in Saint Paul, Minnesota.
Robert W. (Ward) Johnson (1814-1879), was a U.S. Senator from Arkansas from 1853-1861. In 1861 he was a delegate to the Arkansas secession congress. He then served as a Confederate Senator from Arkansas from 1862-1865.
Albert Sidney Johnston (1803-1862) was a Confederate general in the Civil War. He saw extensive combat during his military career, fighting actions in the Black Hawk War, the Texas Revolution/War of Independence, the Mexican War, the Utah or Mormon War, and the Civil War. Like many regular army officers from the South he was opposed to secession, but resigned his commission soon after he heard of the secession of Texas. Jefferson Davis appointed him a full general around September 1, 1861, and he became the commander of the Western Department. Johnston was killed April 6, 1862, at the Battle of Shiloh. He was the highest ranking officer, Union or Confederate, killed during the entire war.
For more information:
- Albert Sidney Johnston, Soldier of Three Republics, by Charles P. Roland ( E467.1.J73 R6 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
- Utah Expedition, 1857-1858: A Documentary Account of the United States Military Movement Under Colonel Albert Sidney Johnston, and the Resistance by Brigham Young and the Mormon Nauvoo Legion, edited by LeRoy R. Hafen and Ann W. Hafen, vol. 8 in the Far West and the Rockies Historical Series (F 591 .F35 v. 8 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
Joseph E. (Eggleston) Johnston (1807-1891), a graduate of West Point, was a career army officer, veteran of the Mexican War, and one of the most senior general officers in the Confederate Army. (He was unrelated to Albert S. Johnston, another Confederate general.) Johnston was the senior Confederate commander at the First Battle of Bull Run, but the victory is usually credited to P. G. T. Beauregard. Johnston suffered a severe wound at the Battle of Seven Pines (May 31-June 1, 1862), and he was replaced in command by his classmate at West Point, Robert E. Lee. In November 1862 he was appointed to command of the Department of the West. The major crisis he faced was defending Confederate control of Vicksburg. Johnston urged General John C. Pemberton abandoning the city and thus avoid being surrounded by General Ulyssess S. Grant. Had Pemberton joined forces with Johnston’s troops, they would have outnumbered Grant, but Confederate President Jefferson Davis ordered Pemberton to defend the city. The relationship between Johnston and Davis had been a difficult one since the early days of the war, and became bitter as they publicly traded recriminations about who was to blame for the fall of Vicksburg.
In 1864, Johnston fought Union General William T. Sherman in the Atlanta Campaign. He surrendered his armies to Sherman on April 26, 1865. After the war Johnston was a railroad and insurance executive. He served a term in Congress and was commissioner of railroads under President Grover Cleveland. Johnston died of pneumonia that he contracted while serving as a pallbearer at the funeral of his former adversary, and later friend, William T. Sherman.
For more information:
- Narrative of Military Operations Directed During the Late War Between the States, by Joseph E. Johnston, 1959 edition with introduction by Frank E. Vandiver (E 470 .J73 1959 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
Norman B. (Buel) Judd (1815-1878) was a valued political supporter of Lincoln in Illinois, although Lincoln did not appoint him to his cabinet. Instead, President Lincoln appointed him Minister Plenipotentiary to Berlin on March 6, 1861, and he served as such until 1865.
Philip Kearny (1815-1862) was a millionaire who obtained a commission as a second lieutenant of cavalry and fought Indians on the western frontier. In the early 1840s, her served as General Winfield Scott’s aide-de-camp and led Scott’s personal bodyguard in the Mexican War. He led a daring cavalry charge in the Mexican War and was the first man of the U.S. Army to enter Mexico City. After a storybook life, he was appointed a brigadier general when the Civil War started. He led the 3rd division into action at the Battle of Williamsburg and the Battle of Seven Pines/Fair Oaks. An interesting footnote, Kearny is credited with devising the first unit insignia patches used in the U.S. Army.
William H. (High) Keim (1813-1862) was commissioned as a major general of Pennsylvania Volunteers on April 20, 1861. When his 3 month enlistment expires in July he returns home to Reading. As it becomes evident that it will not be a quick war, Keim re-enlists and is commissioned a brigadier general of volunteers on December 20, 1861. He dies of typhus on May 18, 1862,while in military service.
William Kellogg (1814-1872) served as a U.S. Representative from Illinois from 1857 to 1863.
John D. (Doby) Kennedy (1840-1896), was a Confederate general from South Carolina. At the First Battle of Bull Run (1st Manassas), he was struck by a Minie ball and badly wounded. While recovering, he was promoted to colonel when Joseph B. Kershaw was promoted to brigadier general.
E. D. (Erasmus Darwin) Keyes (1810-1895) was a career military officer and had been General Winfield Scott’s military secretary from January 1, 1860, to April 1861. When the Civil War broke out, he became colonel of the 11th U.S. Infantry and led the 1st Brigade at the First Battle of Bull Run. In August of 1861 he had been promoted to brigadier general and given command of the 1st Brigade in McDowell’s Division.
Hugh Judson Kilpatrick (1836-1881) was commonly referred to as Judson Kilpatrick. He graduated from West Point in 1861, just after the Civil War started. He was commissioned in the 1st U.S. Artillery, but within three days he was a captain in the 5th New York Infantry. Kilpatrick was wounded in the Battle of Big Bethel (June 10, 1861) and by September 1861 was lieutenant colonel of the 2nd New York Cavalry, a regiment he helped to raise. At the Second Battle of Bull Run (August 28-31, 1862) he lost a full squadron of troopers in a reckless cavalry charge, but was still promoted to full colonel in December of that year. Because of his aggressive and fearless manner, he was nicknamed “Kill Cavalry.” He was jailed in 1862 on charges of corruption, accused of selling captured Confederate goods for personal gain. Kilpatrick gained public fame during the Chancellorsville Campaign in May 1863 by leading a cavalry sweep behind Confederate lines, capturing wagons, burning bridges, and riding around Lee. on June 9, 1863, Kilpatrick fought at Brandy Station, the largest cavalry battle of the war, and received his brigadier general’s star on June 13. In the spring of 1864, Kilpatrick conducted a raid through the Virginia Peninsula, hoping to rescue Union prisoners of war held at Belle Isle and in Libby Prisons in Richmond. The raid resulted in 324 Union cavalrymen killed and wounded–including Ulric Dahlgren’ brigade–and 1000 more taken prisoner. The “Kilpatrick-Dahlgren” expedition was such a fiasco that Kilpatrick was transferred to command the 3rd Division of the Cavalry Corps of General William T. Sherman’s Army of the Cumberland.
Rufus King (1814-1876) became editor of the Milwaukee Sentinel in 1845. Before the Civil War broke out, President Lincoln appointed him as ambassador to the Vatican. He was in New York boarding the boat for Europe when he heard of the attack on Fort Sumter. King rushed back to Washington, D.C., and was commissioned a brigadier general, with responsibility over the first Wisconsin brigade of volunteers that could be raised. On October 1, 1861, he became the commander of the famous Iron Brigade.
For more details:
James Henry Lane (1814-1866), also known as Jim Lane, moved to Kansas Territory in 1855. He immediately became involved in the abolitionist movement in Kansas and was often called the leader of the Jayhawkers. When Kansas was admitted to the Union in 1861, Lane was elected a U.S. Senator and served from April 4, 1861-July 11, 1866. While serving as a senator, Lane raised a brigade composed of Jayhawkers that was known as the “Kansas Brigade” or “Lane’s Brigade,” which was composed of the 3rd, 4th, and 5th Kansas Volunteers. He led this force against General Sterling Price in Missouri several times in 1861, including the looting and burning of Osceola on September 23, 1861, for which he was severly criticized. In December of 1861 Lane was appointed a brigadier general of volunteers, but his commission was canceled in March of 1862 in an argument over whether a sitting U.S. senator could also hold the rank of general. Less than a month later he was reinstated and served as recruiting commissioner for Kansas.
There was also a Confederate general named James Henry Lane.
Joseph Lane (1801–1881) served as a U.S. Senator from Oregon from February 14, 1859–March 4, 1861. Lane, originally from North Carolina and Kentucky, had been nominated for vice-president on the pro-slavery southern wing of the Democratic Party’s 1860 ticket, alongside presidential candidate John C. Breckinridge. When his Senate term expired in 1861, Lane retired to Oregon and took no part in the Civil War.
For more information:
- Lane’s papers are in the University of Oregon’s Special Collections and University Archives.
Charles H. (Hathaway) Larrabee (1820-1883) was a U.S. Representative from Wisconsin from March 1859-March 1861. He enlists in the Union Army on April 17, 1861, and serves until his resignation in September 1863.
Jacob G. (Gartner) Lauman (1813-1867) was a businessman in Burlington, Iowa, before the Civil War. He helped raise several companies and was commissioned as the colonel of the 7th Iowa Infantry. He was severely wounded at the Battle of Belmont (November 7, 1861). He was then appointed to lead the 4th Brigade of the 2nd Division at the attack on Fort Donelson. General Grant promoted him to brigadier general in March 1862 and he subsequently lead a brigade in General Hurlbut’s division. In 1863 Lauman led the 4th Division of the 17th Corps during the Vicksburg campaign, but was relieved of duty by General William T. Sherman shortly after the capture of Jackson, Mississippi. General Ord accused him of failing to properly execute orders and that his wanton disregard of the orders led to heavy casualties. He returned home for the rest of the war without being given a subsequent command.
Michael Kelly Lawler (1814-1882), colonel of the 18th Illinois, had served as a captain in the Mexican War. In May 1861 he recruited the 18th Illinois Volunteer Infantry Regiment, and was appointed as its first colonel. He was wounded at the Battle of Fort Donelson, and in November 1862 he became a brigadier general. He fought with distinction in the Vicksburg Campaign in 1863. He led his men in the battles of Port Gibson, Champion’s Hill, and Big Black River Bridge. General Lawler served as commander of the 1st Division, XIII Corps, in the Department of the Gulf in Louisiana. He took command of the division during the disastrous Red River Campaign and led it on an expedition in June 1864 to secure a crossing of the Atchafalaya River. In the omnibus promotions at the end of the Civil War, Lawler will receive a promotion for distinguished service to major general in the Union army.
For more information:
- “Michael K. Lawler’s Ordeal with the Eighteenth Illinois,” by William A. Pitkin, in the Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society, vol. 58, no. 4 (Winter 1965): 357-77. Available online.
Fitzhugh “Fitz” Lee (1835-1905) was a nephew of Robert E. Lee. He graduated from West Point and after practical experience as a cavalry officer he was an instructor of cavalry tactics at West Point when the Civil War broke out. He was a Confederate cavalry general during the Civil War, and after the Battle of Gettysburg General Stuart said he was “”one of the finest cavalry leaders on the continent.” After the War, he will be the 40th governor of Virginia (1886-1890), the U.S. consul-general in Cuba, and a U.S. general in the Spanish-American War.
Robert E. (Edward) Lee (1807-1870) graduated from West Point and served in the U.S. Army, primarily as an engineer. In 1831 he married Mary Custis, the great-granddaughter of Martha Washington. Lee distinguished himself in the Mexican War and was one of Winfield Scott’s chief aides. Lee and Ulysses S. Grant met and worked together during the Mexican War. In 1852, Lee was appointed superintendent of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. In 1855, he was promoted and served under Albert Sidney Johnston in the 2nd Cavalry. It meant leaving the Engineering Corps and its sequence of staff jobs for the combat command he truly wanted.
Robert E. Lee is best known for commanding the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia in the American Civil War. When Virginia seceded from the Union in April 1861, Lee chose to follow his home state, despite his personal desire for the Union to stay intact and despite the fact that President Abraham Lincoln had offered Lee command of the Union Army. He soon emerged as a shrewd tactician and battlefield commander, winning numerous battles against larger Union armies. Lee would ultimately surrender to Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Court House on April 9, 1865, and the remaining Confederate armies soon capitulated after Lee’s surrender.
After the War, Lee served as the president of what is now Washington and Lee University from October 1865 until his death in 1870, transforming it into a leading Southern college. Lee’s prewar family home, the Custis-Lee Mansion, was seized by Union forces during the war and turned into Arlington National Cemetery.
For more information:
- General Lee, by Fitzhugh Lee
- Grant and Lee: A Study in Personality and Generalship
- Lee and Longstreet at Gettysburg
- Lee’s Last Campaign: The Story of Lee and His Men Against Grant
- Marbe Man: Robert E. Lee and His Image in American Society
- R. E. Lee, a Biography
- Robert E. Lee
- Wartime Papers of R. E. Lee
Stephen D. (Dill) Lee (1833-1908) graduated from West Point and served in the Seminole War and on the western frontier. He resigned his commission in 1861 to join the South Caroline Militia. He was P.G.T. Beauregard’s aide-de-camp who delivered Beauregard’s ultimatum to Union Major Robert Anderson. Lee commanded a light battery in Hampton’s Legion in Gen. Joseph E. Johnston’s army, was promoted to lieutenant colonel in March 1862, was the artillery chief for Maj. Gen. Lafayette McLaw and then Brig. Gen. John B. Magruder. Lee participated in the Peninsula Campaign, Second Bull Run, and the Battle of Antietam where his artillery played a prominent role in defending the ground near the famed Dunker Church. In November 1862 he was promoted to brigadier general, and in May 1863 took command of Pemberton’s artillery defending Vicksburg. Lee was wounded at the Battle of Champion Hill. Lee was promoted to major general in August 1863 and lieutenant general in June 1864, the youngest Confederate lieutenant general during the American Civil War. After the War Lee became a planter in Mississippi, was the first president of Mississippi A&M College, and wrote extensively about the War.
John Letcher (1813-1884) was the 34th Governor of Virginia, serving from 1860-1864. He was prominent in the Peace Convention that met in February of 1861 to try to prevent the split of the Union. Letcher discourages secession, but is then active in sustaining the secession ordinance and even runs for the Confederate Congress in 1863.
James Taylor Lewis (1819-1904) was the ninth governor of Wisconsin. A lawyer by profession, Lewis was a Democrat when he served in the Wisconsin Constitutional Convention (1847-1848), the Wisconsin Assembly (1852), the Wisconsin Senate (1853), and as Wisconsin’s lieutenant governor (1854-56). He retired from public life, but only until 1861 when he re-entered politics, this time as a Republican. Lewis was elected secretary of state in 1861 and governor in 1863. He was an ardent supporter of President Lincoln, and faithfully supplied his state’s quota of soldiers for the army. He made numerous trips to army hospitals and camps, and secured a special order to transfer Wisconsin’s sick and wounded soldiers home. Lewis was also instrumental in founding homes for both soldiers and soldiers’ orphans.
For more on Lewis, see
- Lewis, Gov. James Taylor entry in the Dictionary of Wisconsin History.
Abraham Lincoln (1809-April 15, 1865) was elected as the 16th U.S. president on November 6, 1860, and took office on March 4, 1861, having arrived in Washington, D.C., on February 23. Between November and March, seven states seceded from the Union. (South Carolina, Florida, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas.)
For more information:
- The Life of Abraham Lincoln, Springfield, by J. G. Holland (SPL E 457 .H65 1866 in the UWRF University Archives & Area Research Center); available digitally on Google Books.
- Lincoln: Passages from His Speeches and Letters, with an introduction by Richard Watson Gilder (SPL E 457.92 1901 UWRF University Archives & Area Research Center); digitally available on Google Books.
- Lincoln, Master of Men: A Study in Character, by Alonzo Rothschild (E 457 .R84 UWRF Chalmer Davee Library); digitally available on Google Books.
John A. (Alexander) Logan (1826-1886) served in the Mexican War and then entered politics, serving in the Illinois state legislature in the 1850s. In the Civil War, he fought at the 1st Battle of Bull run, became colonel of the 31st Illinois Infantry, and fought at the Battles of Belmont and Fort Donelson. In March 1862 he was promoted to brigadier general (March 1862) and commanded the 1st brigade during the Siege of Corinth. In the spring of 1863 he was promoted to major general. During the Vicksburg Campaign, Logan commanded the 3rd Division of the XVII Corps, which was the first to enter the city of Vicksburg in 1863, and after its capture Logan served as its military governor. In November 1863 he succeeded William Tecumseh Sherman in command of the XV Corps; and after the death of James B. McPherson, he commanded the Army of the Tennessee at the Battle of Atlanta (July 22, 1864) until relieved by Oliver O. Howard. After the war, Logan served as a U.S. congressman (1867-1871) and senator (1871-1877) from Illinois, Logan was the unsuccessful candidate for Vice President of the United States (with James G. Blaine) in 1884, and as the commander-in-chief of the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) was an important figure in the movement to recognize Memorial Day as an official holiday.
James Longstreet (1821-1904) was a graduate of West Point where he was one year ahead o his friend, Ulysses S. Grant. He served with distinction in the Mexican War. General Robert E. Lee referred to Longstreet as his “Old War Horse,” and made him his second-in-command. Longstreet’s talents as a general made significant contributions to the Confederate victories at Second Bull Run (August 28-30, 1862), Fredericksburg (December 11-15, 1862), and Chickamauga (September 19-20, 1863). He also performed strongly during the Seven Days Battles (June 25-July 1, 1862), the Battle of Antietam (September 16, 1862), and, until he was seriously wounded, at the Battle of the Wilderness (May 5-7, 1864). His most controversial service was at the Battle of Gettysburg (July 1-3, 1863), where some argue he failed to carry out Lee’s instructions and acted too slowly. He reluctantly supervised the disastrous Pickett’s Charge.
After the War, Longstreet’s conversion to the Republican Party, his campaigning for his old friend Ulysses S. Grant’s 1868 presidential bid, and the publication if his memoirs, which included critical comments about General Lee’s wartime performance, especially at Gettysburg, made him anathema to many of his former Confederate colleagues. The Lost Cause movement, led by General Jubal Early and a small group of disgruntled Confederate officers who believed General Lee was infallible, focused their attention on Longstreet’s actions at Gettysburg as a primary reason for the Confederacy’s loss of the war. His reputation in the South was damaged for over a century. Only in the second half of the 20th Century has his reputation been somewhat rehabilitated.
For more information:
- From Manassas to Appomattox: Memoirs of the Civil War, by James Longstreet, (E 470 .L85 UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
- James Longstreet, Lee’s War Horse, by H. J. Eckenrode and Bryan Conrad (E 467.1 .L55 E4 UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
- Lee and Longstreet at Gettysburg, by Glenn Tucker (E 475.53 .T8 UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
- Lee the Soldier, edited by Gary W. Gallagher, which includes a reply to Longstreet by Jubal Early (E 467.1 .L4 L48 1996 UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
- The Myth of the Lost Cause and Civil War History, edited by Gary W. Gallagher and Alan T. Nolan (E 487 .M97 2000 UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
Cyrus O. (Orlando) Loomis (1821-1872), at this time colonel of the 1st Michigan Artillery. In January 1863 he was appointed the chief of artillery on the staff of Major General George H. Thomas, 1st Division, Center Corps, Army of the Cumberland.
William W. (Wing) Loring (1818-1886) joined the Florida Militia and gained his first combat experience fighting the Seminole Indians when he was only 14. He then ran away to fight in the Texas War for Independence, but he father caught up with him and took him home, where he became a 2nd lieutenant fight in the 2nd Seminole War. He studied law at Georgetown University and was admitted to the Florida bar in 1842. He served in the Florida House of Representatives from 1843-45. Loring then served in the Mexican War and was wounded 3 times, including in an arm that ended up being amputated. During the California gold rush, Loring led a train of 600 mule teams from Missouri to Oregon, and was in command of the Oregon Territory for two years. He then was the commander of several forts on the frontier and fought Indians. He was promoted to colonel in the regular army at the age of 38, the youngest in the army. When the Civil War started, he resigned from the U.S. Army on May 13, 1861. Loring was commissioned a brigadier general and given command of the Army of the Northwest and sent to defend western Virginia. During the Vicksburg Campaign he was cut off from the rest of the army at the Battle of Champion Hill. Loring temporarily took over command of Leonidas Polk’s corps when Polk was killed at Pine Mountain on June 14, 1864, After being wounded at Ezra Church on July 28, 1864, Loring was out of action until after the fall of Atlanta. After the Civil War, Loring served for 9 years in Egypt.
Charles Swain Lovell (1811-1871) was a career military officer. He served in the Second Seminole War, the Mexican War, and the Civil War. He enlisted in the U.S. Army as a private in 1831, was promoted to quartermaster, sergeant-major, and in 1837 was commissioned a 2nd lieutenant in the 6th U.S. Infantry. In 1861 he was promoted to major in the 10th U.S. Infantry, brevetted a lieutenant colonel in June 1862, and brevetted a colonel in July 1862. From January 1863 to February 1865 Lovell was a lieutenant colonel. During this time as lieutenant colonel of the 18th U.S. Infantry, Lovell was also acting assistant provost marshal general for Wisconsin and as such was responsible for “the draft, the arrest of deserters, treasonable practices, &c.” On February 16, 1865, he became colonel of the 14th U.S. Infantry. In March of 1865 Lovell was brevetted a brigadier general for his actions in the Battle of Antietam. Lovell retired from active service in 1870 and died in 1871.
T. S. C. (Thaddeus Sobieski Coulincourt) Lowe (1832-1913) was an American scientist, and inventor. By the late 1850s he was well-known for his balloon building and in In July 1861, President Lincoln appointed him Chief Aeronaut of the Union Army Balloon Corps. Lowe organized the Corps as a civilian operation and he used a group of prominent American aeronauts and seven specially-built, gas-filled balloons to perform aerial reconnaissance for the Union Army. Lowe’s first outing was at the First Battle of Bull Run.
For more information:
- Above the Civil War: The Story of Thaddeus Lowe, Balloonist, Inventor, Railway Builder, by Eugene B. Block, (TL 620 .L6 B57 UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
Nathaniel Lyon (1818-1861) was the first Union general to be killed in the Civil War. Lyon graduated from West Point and was a career military officer. Lyon became a staunch abolitionist while serving in the border wars between Kansas and Missouri. When the Civil War started, Lyon was in charge of the U.S. arsenal in St. Louis, Missouri, and prevented its capture by pro-Confederate forces. Lyon was killed on August 10, 1861, at the Battle of Wilson’s Creek. The Lyon Light Guards from Prescott, Wisconsin, were named in his honor.
John B. (Bankhead) Magruder (1807-1871) was a career military officer who served with the Conferate Army during the Civil War. Magruder is perhaps best remembered for his actions in delaying Union troops during the 1862 Peninsula Campaign by using elaborate ruses that gave McClellan the impression that the Confederates had more forces than they actually did. Magruder, however, performed poorly and unaggressively in the subsequent Seven Days Battle, earning a poor reputation with Robert E. Lee, who sent him to Texas. On January 1, 1863, Magruder’s forces won the Battle of Galveston, recapturing the city and port for the Confederacy.
Stephen R. (Russell) Mallory (ca. 1813-1873) was a U.S. Senator from Florida (1850-1861), and would become the Secretary of the Navy for the Confederacy (March 4, 1861-May 20, 1865).
Joseph K. (King Fenno) Mansfield (1803-1862) commanded the Department of Washington (April 27-August 17, 1861) at the start of the Civil War; he was promoted to brigadier general on May 6, 1861.
John S. (Sappington) Marmaduke (1833-1887) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer. Although his father was a strong supporter of the Union, in the spring of 1861 Marmaduke’s pro-secession uncle, Missouri’s Governor Claiborne Fox Jackson, soon appointed him colonel of the First Regiment of Rifles in the Missouri State Guard. Disgusted by their poor showing in the Battle of Boonville, he resigned, went to Richmond, and received a commission in the regular Confederate State Army. He was wounded at the Battle of Shiloh. In November 1862, he received a promotion to brigadier general and his first battle in that capacity was the Battle of Prairie Grove (December 7, 1862). In September 1863 Marmaduke killed another Confederate officer in a duel. After the War, he served as the 25th governor of Missouri (1884-1887); his father had been the 8th governor of Missouri and his uncle the 15th.
James M. (Murray) Mason (1798-1871) was a U.S. Representative from Virginia for 1837-1839, and a U.S. senator from Virginia from 1847 to March 28, 1861, where he drafted the second Fugitive Slave Law (1850). He was a grandson of George Mason, one of the “fathers” of the U.S. Bill of Rights. James Mason was released from Federal custody in January 1862 and proceeded to London, where he represented the Confederacy until April 1865.
- For more on the Trent Affair, see the Naval History Blog posting for November 8, 1861.
John McArthur (1826-1906) was one of the ablest Union commanders in the Western Theater. At the outbreak of the Civil War, McArthur was appointed colonel of an Illinois volunteer regiment. Shortly after, he was elevated to command the 1st Brigade in Brigadier General Charles F. Smith’s division. Following Fort Donelson McArthur was promoted to brigadier general and led his brigade at the Battle of Shiloh, the siege of Corinth, and the siege of Vicksburg. His troops played a significant role in breaking the Confederate lines the second day of the Battle of Nashville, and he received a brevet promotion to major general of volunteers for his actions in that battle.
George A. (Archibald) McCall (1802-1868) was another career military officer who served with distinction in the Mexican War. He was one of the oldest West Point graduates to serve in the Civil War.
George B. (Brinton) McClellan (1826-1885) was was a major general during the Civil War. Early in the war, he played an important role in raising a well-trained and organized army for the Union. He organized the famous Army of the Potomac and served briefly (November 1861 to March 1862) as the general-in-chief of the Union Army.
For more information:
- Lincoln, Master of Men: A Study in Character, by Alonzo Rothschild (E 457 .R84 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library); digitally available on Google Books
- McClellan, Sherman, and Grant, by T. Harry Williams, 1962 (E 467 .W5 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
John A. (Alexander) McClernand (1812-1900) was a prominent Democratic politician in Illinois and a congressman in the U.S. House of Representatives, 1859-1861, before the war. Early in the war he served under General Grant in the Western Theater. He was second in command at the Battle of Belmont, and commanded the 1st Division of Grant’s army at Fort Donelson in February 1862. Following the Battle of Fort Donelson, McClernand is promoted to major general in March 1862. His service as a major general is tainted by his political maneuvering, which annoyed his fellow generals.
For more information:
- April 30, 1862, post: Who Are the Union’s Western Generals?
Alexander McDowell McCook (1831-1903) was a career military officer and one of “The Fighting McCooks.” At the start of the Civil War, McCook was appointed colonel of the 1st Ohio Infantry. He saw action at the First Battle of Bull Run in July 1861, and in September he was promoted to brigadier general of volunteers. McCook commanded a division in Tennessee and helped capture Nashville. McCook then commanded the 2nd Division in the Army of the Ohio at the Battle of Shiloh.
Ben (Benjamin) McCulloch (1811-1862) was a Texas Ranger, a U.S. marshal, and a Confederate brigadier general. On August 10, 1861, McCulloch’s troops, though relatively poorly armed, defeated General Nathaniel Lyon’s Union troops at the Battle of Wilson’s Creek in Missouri. But McCulloch’s lack of confidence in Sterling Price’s Missouri forces led him to hesitate in striking boldly against Lyon, a move that might have given the Confederacy control of Missouri. The continuing feud between McCulloch and Price after Wilson’s Creek led to the appointment of Earl Van Dorn to the overall command of the Confederate troops in the area. At the Battle of Pea Ridge, in Arkansas, on March 7, 1862, McCulloch led the Confederate right wing and his troops overran a key Union artillery position, but McCulloch was killed later in the day.
For more information:
- Benjamin McCulloch entry in The Handbook of Texas Online.
- The McCulloch (Ben and Henry Eustace) Family Papers are at the University of Texas at Austin.
Irvin McDowell (1818-1885), another career military officer, is perhaps best known for his defeat at the First Battle of Bull Run and some culpability in the Second Battle of Bull Run defeat. After First Bull Run he was put in charge of the forces left to defend Washington, D. C.
Walter Duncan McIndoe (1819-1872) had moved to Wausau, Wisconsin, in 1847, where he became co-partner in a lumber-milling business. He was a state assemblyman for many years and in December, 1862, he was elected to the U.S. Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Luther Hanchett.
For more information:
- See McIndoe’s entry in the Dictionary of Wisconsin History.
Justus McKinstry (1814-1897) was a graduate of West Point (in 1838) and served in both the Seminole War in Florida and the Mexican War. He was the U.S. Army quartermaster and provost Marshall of Saint Louis during the Frémont era, and is generally thought to have used his position as quartermaster to better his own situation with bribes and payoffs but history it seems has cleared him of these charges. In mid-1861 Frémont made McKinstry a general of infantry and gave him a division.
For more details see:
- G. E. Rule’s “Justus McKinstry and His Enemies” on the Civil War St. Louis website.
James B. (Birdseye) McPherson (1828-1864) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer. In the Civil War he served on General Halleck’s staff and was the chief engineer in General Grant’s army during the battles of Fort Henry and Fort Donelson. In October 1862 he was promoted to major general and given command of the XVII Corps in Grant’s Army of the Tennessee. In March 1864 he was given command of the entire Army of the Tennessee, which by then was the right wing of General W.T. Sherman’s army. McPherson will be killed during Sherman’s Atlanta Campaign, the second highest ranking Union officer killed during the war and the only commander of a Union army to die in the field.
George G. (Gordon) Meade (1815-1872) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer. Meade’s Civil War combat experience started in the Peninsula Campaign and the Seven Days Battles, and his division was arguably the most successful during the assaults at the Battle of Fredericksburg. But it was for defeating Confederate General Robert E. Lee at the Battle of Gettysburg in the summer of 1863 that he is best known.
Thomas Francis Meagher (1823-1867) was an Irish rebel who was condemned to death for sedition but instead was sent to a penal colony in Australia. In 1852 he escaped and came to America. Meagher joined the U. S. Army at the start of the Civil War and became a brigadier general. He is notable for recruiting and leading the Irish Brigade, and for encouraging support for the Union among Irish immigrants. The Battle of Gaines’s Mill is considered the highlight of Meagher’s military career.
After the War, Meagher, like many other former Civil War soldiers, moved to Montana Territory. He was appointed Territorial Secretary, and, while Acting Governor, he fell to his death from a steamboat on the Missouri River near Fort Benton. It is still debated whether the fall was accidental or murder. His statue, showing him on horseback with sword raised, is in front of the Montana state capitol.
Montgomery C. (Cunningham) Meigs (1816-1892), a graduate of West Point, was a career military officer and a civil engineer. During the Civil War, he served as the Quartermaster General of the U.S. Army, replacing Joseph Johnston who had resigned to become a Confederate general. Meigs was efficient and honest, something the Union Army needed during the War.
Nelson A. (Appleton) Miles (1839-1925), who was a store clerk before the War. He was commissioned lieutenant colonel of the 61st New York Infantry Regiment in May 1862, and was promoted to colonel after the Battle of Antietam in September 1862. Miles is best known for his army service on the frontier after the Civil War. He participated in the campaign that scoured the Northern Plains after Custer’s defeat at the Battle of the Little Big Horn, his troops intercepted the Nez Percé band led by Chief Joseph in northern Montana, and he tracked Geronimo in Arizona. Miles City, Montana, is named for him.
Robert H. (Huston) Milroy (1816-1890) was a lawyer in Indiana before being appointed colonel of the 9th Indiana Infantry in April 1861. He took part in the western Virginia campaign under Major General George B. McClellan and was promoted to brigadier general in September 1861 and major general in March 1863. Milroy is most remembered for his defeat at the Second Battle of Winchester in June 1863, where he was outmaneuvered by Confederate General Richard S. Ewell. Milroy had been ordered to withdraw his 6,900-man garrison from Winchester, but chose to remain in the face of the Confederate invasion, assuming that the fortifications of Winchester would withstand any assault or siege. After a period of inactivity following that defeat, Milroy was transferred to the Western Theater and fought briefly in the Third Battle of Murfreesboro in 1864. After the War, Milroy was a trustee of the Wabash and Erie Canal Company and, from 1872 to 1875 he was the superintendent of Indian Affairs in Washington Territory and an Indian agent for ten years following that.
Robert B. (Byington) Mitchell (1823-1882) was a lawyer. He served in the Mexican War. He was the treasurer of Kansas Territory from 1859 to 1861. He was the Adjutant General of Kansas and was badly wounded at the Battle of Wilson’s Creek. President Lincoln appointed him a brigadier general and he was given command at Fort Riley, Kansas. After the War he will become the governor of New Mexico Territory (1866-1869).
Edwin D. (Denison) Morgan (1811-1883) was the 21st Governor of New York from 1859-1862, when he will become a U.S. Senator from New York, serving from 1863-1869. Morgan was very influential in Republican politics and served as the first chairman of the Republican National Committee, 1856 to 1864.
John Hunt Morgan (1825-1864) was a Confederate general from Lexington, Kentucky. He had served in the cavalry in the Mexican War. Morgan and a militia company he raised joined the Confederate States Army. Morgan soon raised the 2nd Kentucky Cavalry Regiment, becoming its colonel on April 4, 1862, and they fought at the Battle of Shiloh. Morgan soon became a symbol to secessionists in their hopes for securing Kentucky for the Confederacy, and he became one of the leading Confederate raiders.
William James Morgan (d. 1866) was a grocer in Brunswick, Missouri, before the Civil War. At the beginning of the war he was authorized to raise a regiment of infantry, which he recruited predominantly in northern Missouri. The regiment, known as the Morgan Rangers, eventually became part of the 18th Missouri Volunteer Infantry, which completed formation in December, 1861, with Morgan as its colonel. Due to his inflammatory actions in Platte County, Missouri, Morgan will be relieved of command of the regiment in February 1862.
Justin S. (Smith) Morrill (1810-1898), U.S. Representative (1855-1867) from Vermont was sponsor of the Morrill Tariff law, adopted on March 2, 1861. Passage of the Morrill Tariff was possible because many of the Southern Congressmen had left Washington by then after their states seceded.
Oliver (Hazard Perry Throck) Morton (1823-1877), usually known simply as Oliver P. Morton, was the 14th governor of Indiana, serving from 1861 to 1867. After the War, he will be a U.S. senator from Indiana (1867-1877), where as a Radical Republican will support numerous bills designed to punish the former Confederate states.
Joseph A. (Anthony) Mower (1827-1870) entered the U.S. army in 1855, having previously served as a private in the Mexican War. During the Civil War he became colonel of the 11th Missouri Volunteer Regiment and fought at the Siege of Corinth. At the Battle of Corinth he was wounded and taken prisoner, but recovered by Union forces the same day. Mower was promoted to brigadier general of volunteers in November 1862. He commanded a brigade during the Vicksburg Campaign and Siege of Vicksburg where he caught the attention of William T. Sherman. Mower was promoted to major general in August 1864, and commanded a division during Sherman’s March to the Sea and the Carolinas Campaign.
James A. Mulligan (1829-1864) was the colonel of the 23rd Illinois Infantry, known in Illinois as the “Irish Brigade.” In the Battle of Lexington (Battle of the Hemp Bales), his small force of 3,500 had tried to hold Lexington, Missouri, against Sterling Price’s 12,000 troop. He distinguished himself in other engagements in the Eastern theater, including the Battle of Leetown and the Second Battle of Kernstown, where he was mortally wounded. The U. S. Senate posthumously awarded to Colonel Mulligan of the rank of brevet brigadier general of U.S. Volunteers.
James S. (Scott) Negley (1826-1901) served in the Mexican War ,was a farmer, railroader, and U.S. Representative from the state of Pennsylvania. In April 1861 he was appointed a brigadier general in the Pennsylvania volunteers and raised a brigade. On November 29, 1862, he was appointed major general of volunteers and took command of the 8th Division in the Army of the Ohio. Negley played a key role in the Union victory at the Battle of Murfreesboro in 1862.
William “Bull” Nelson (1824-1862) was a career military officer. A native of Kentucky, Nelson went to Louisville and distributed arms to Kentucky loyalists early in the war. On July 1, 1861, he was detached from the Navy to recruit troops for a campaign into East Tennessee, and on September 16 was made a brigadier general for this work. At the end of November 1861, he joined the Army of the Ohio at Louisville. Nelson commanded the Fourth Division and that unit will became the first to enter Nashville on February 25, 1862. In April he led his division at the Battle of Shiloh, helping to stem the tide on the first day and bearing the brunt of the fighting on the left on the second day. On May 30, 1862, he was the first to enter Corinth, but then became embroiled in a fight with General John Pope over who deserved credit for occupying the abandoned town. Nelson was shot to death by fellow Union General Jefferson C. Davis on September 29, 1862, in Louisville following an argument.
Edward O. C. (Otho Cresap) Ord (1818-1883) graduated from West Point, where he was William T. Sherman’s roommate. As a career military officer, he served in the Seminole War, the Indian Wars, and helped survey Sacramento and Los Angeles, California. When the Civil War began, Ord first served as a brigade commander in the Pennsylvania Reserves before being promoted to major general of volunteers in May 1862. He missed actually fighting at both Iuka and Cornith, Mississippi, but engaged the Confederates in their retreat at the Battle of Hatchie’s Bridge, where he was seriously wounded. Ord assumed command of the XIII Corps during the final days of the Siege of Vicksburg. After Vicksburg he returned East to command the XVIII Corps and was again seriously wounded in the attack on Fort Harrison (September 1864). In the spring of 1865, Ord was assigned command of the Army of the James during the Appomattox Campaign and was instrumental in forcing the surrender of Confederate General Robert E. Lee. Following the assassination of President Lincoln on April 14, 1865, General Grant asked Ord to investigate whether the Confederate government was involved with the assassination plot, which he determined was not true. Immediately following the end of the War, Ord command the Army of Occupation, headquartered at Richmond. He was mustered out of Volunteer service in September 1866, but continued to serve in the regular Army until he retired in 1881.
Joshua T. (Thomas) Owen (1822-1887) commanded the 69th Pennsylvania Infantry, commonly called the “Irish Regiment” for its predominantly Irish composition.
Eleazer A. (Arthur) Paine (1815-1882) graduated from West Point and served in the Seminole Wars. He resigned his commission in 1840. He then studied law and practiced as a lawyer in Ohio. He was a close friend of fellow Illinois lawyer Abraham Lincoln. When Civil War started, Paine was elected as the colonel of the 9th Illinois Infantry. In September of that year, he was appointed as a brigadier general of volunteers. Paine developed a reputation for harshness and cruelty toward the civilian populace, and was reprimanded for it by Congress. He was a first cousin of Halbert E. Paine.
Halbert E. (Eleazer) Paine (1826-1905) commands the 4th Wisconsin Infantry/Cavalry during the Civil War. “He is best remembered for disobeying orders to return fugitive slaves to their owners and refusing to burn down the city of Baton Rouge, Louisiana.”
- From the Dictionary of Wisconsin History entry on Halbert E. Paine.
Henry L. Palmer (1819-1909) was a lawyer, politician, and insurance executive. A Democrat, Palmer was state assemblyman (1853, 1860, 1862, 1873) and state senator (1867-1868). He also served as Milwaukee County judge (1873-1874). He will be the unsuccessful Democratic candidate for Wisconsin governor in 1863. After the War, Palmer will become the chief justice of the Wisconsin Supreme Court.
- For more information, see the Dictionary of Wisconsin History article on Henry L. Palmer.
M. M. (Mosby Monroe) Parsons (1822-1865) was a lawyer and from 1853 to 1857 he was attorney general of Missouri. He served as a captain in the Mexican War. Parsons was actively allied with Missouri Governor Clairborne Jackson in an effort to hold Missouri to the Confederate cause. He commanded the 6th Division of the Missouri State Guard as a brigadier general, and in late 1862 he was commissioned a brigadier general in the Confederate service.
Robert Patterson (1792-1881) had served in the Mexican War and was appointed a major general of Pennsylvania volunteers when the Civil War started. His inability to contain Joseph E. Johnston’s small Confederate army within the Shenandoah Valley allowed Johnston’s troops to reinforce the Confederate Army at the First Battle of Bull Run. Patterson was widely criticized for his failure to contain the Johnston’s forces, and he received an honorable discharge in late July 1861.
Everett Peabody (1830-1862) was a civil engineer working for various railroads in Massachusetts and Missouri before the Civil War. He was first appointed a major in the 13th Missouri Volunteer Regiment and then on September 1, 1861, he was appointed colonel of the regiment. The regiment was posted to garrison duty at Lexington, Missouri, and Peabody took an active part in the siege of Lexington. Due to his regiment’s capture at Lexington, it was removed from the official roster of Missouri regiments and another “13th Missouri” was created in its place. After he was exchanged as a prisoner, Peabody rebuilt his regiment, which was then designated the 25th Missouri Infantry.
John J. (James) Peck (1821-1878) graduated from West Point—in the same class as Ulysses S. Grant—and served in the Mexican War and on the western frontier fighting Apache Indians. In August 1861 he accepted a commission as a brigadier general of volunteers and served in George B. McClellan’s Army of the Potomac, fighting in the siege of Yorktown and the battles of Williamsburg, Fair Oaks, the Seven Days battles, and Malvern Hill. When McClellan’s forces evacuated the peninsula, Peck was left in command of the Union garrison at Yorktown and in September 1862 he was given command of all Union troops in Virginia south of the James River. In 1863 Peck took command of the garrison at Suffolk.
John C. (Clifford) Pemberton (1814-1881) graduated from West Point, and served in the Seminole Wars and the Mexican War before resigning his commission to join the Confederacy in 1861. Despite his Northern birth, and having two brothers serving with the Union, his Virginia-born wife and many years of service in Southern states influenced his decision. Pemberton was promoted to major general in January 1862 and commanded the Confederate Department of South Carolina and Georgia from March to August 1862. In October of that year he was again promoted and assigned command of the Department of Mississippi and the defense of Vicksburg, where he faced his former Mexican War colleague, Ulysses S. Grant.
John Jones Pettus (1813-1867) was the governor of Mississippi from 1859 to 1863.
Josiah Little Pickard (1824-1914). From the Dictionary of Wisconsin History : “In 1859 he was elected state superintendent of public instruction, serving in this capacity from Jan., 1860, until his resignation in Sept., 1864. During his administration, Pickard promoted the raising of teacher standards and requirements, and played an important role in unifying the state’s educational program. He secured passage of a bill (1861) establishing the county superintendent system of state school administration, and, in an effort to raise the state’s educational standards, utilized the Wisconsin Journal of Education (old series) as a medium of communication with local school districts. Pickard was president of the University of Wisconsin board of regents (1862-1865).”
Francis W. (Wilkinson) Pickens (1805-1869) was the 69th Governor of South Carolina, 1860-1862, when the state seceded from the Union. Pickens sanctioned the firing on the relief ship, the Star of the West, on January 9, 1861, in Charleston’s harbor. He also approves of the bombardment of Fort Sumter in Charleston’s harbor, on April 12-13, 1861.
George Edward Pickett (1825-1875) graduated from West Point and was a career military officer, gaining national recognition for carrying the American flag over the parapet at the Battle of Chapultepec during the Mexican War. Later Pickett served on the Western frontier, including being in charge of the garrison on San Juan Island in northwest Washington state during the “Pig War.” When Virginia seceded Pickett resigned is commission, despite his personal dislike of slavery, and accepted a commission in the Confederate Army. Pickett led his brigade at the battles of Williamsburg, Seven Pines, and Gaine’s Mill where he was wounded. He was promoted to major general in October 1862 but did not see any significant combat until Gettysburg. He is best remembered for his participation in the bloody assault at the Battle of Gettysburg that bears his name, Pickett’s Charge. On April 1, 1865, Pickett’s defeat at the Battle of Five Forks was a pivotal moment that caused General Robert E. Lee to order the evacuation of Richmond, Virginia, and retreat toward Appomattox Court House. He surrendered with Lee’s army and was paroled at Appomattox Court House on April 9, 1865.
Gideon J. (Johnson) Pillow (1806-1878) was a lawyer before the War, being a partner with James K. Polk, future president of the United States. He served in the Tennessee Militia in the 1830s and in the Mexican War in the 1840s. Although he opposed secession, Pillow joined the Confederacy just after the start of the Civil War. He soon came under the command of General Albert Sidney Johnston in the Western Theater, where he fought in the Battle of Belmont (November 1861).
Pillow resigned from the Army on December 28, 1861, in a dispute with Major General Leonidas Polk, but he soon realized that this was a rash decision and was able to cancel his resignation. He was then given command of Fort Donelson on the Cumberland River. His command was brief, however, when three additional brigadier generals were assigned to the fort, one of whom—John B. Floyd—outranked him and he found himself in the unofficial position of second-in-command. Floyd, who feared prosecution for treason if he should be captured, turned command of the army over to Pillow, who had similar concerns and immediately passed command to Simon B. Buckner. Pillow escaped in the night in a small boat across the Cumberland River.
Allan Pinkerton (1819-1884) was a detective and spy, best known for starting the Pinkerton National Detective Agency, the first detective agency in the U.S. In his role as head of Union Intelligence Services during the war, Pinkerton foiled another assassination attempt against Lincoln. His wartime work was critical in raising Pinkerton’s profile and helping to bolster the reputation of his detective agency.
Alfred Pleasonton (1824-1897) graduated from West Point and was a career military officer, serving on the frontier (including Minnesota) and in the Mexican War. Once the Civil War started, it took him longer than many of his contemporaries to become a brigadier general, commanding a cavalry brigade in the Army of the Potomac. He was wounded at the Battle of Antietam, participated in the Battle of Chacellorsville (although not as much as he tried to take credit for), lead the Union cavalry forces in the Battle of Brandy Station, and was held on a short leash by General George Meade at the Battle of Gettysburg. In 1864 he was transferred to the Trans-Mississippi Theater, where he defeated Confederate General Sterling Price in two key battles, effectively ending the war in Missouri. In 1864 and 1865, he instituted a policy of amnesty and granted parole to Confederate prisoners on condition they go up the Missouri River to the Dakota and Montana Territories, resulting in the migration of many Confederates to the Montana goldfields.
Leonidas Polk (1806-1864) was a Confederate general in the American Civil War and a second cousin of President James K. Polk. He organized the Army of Mississippi and part of the Army of Tennessee, in which he later served as Lieutenant General. Polk led a corps during the Battle of Shiloh.
Trusten Polk (1811-1876) was a U.S. Senator from Missouri, 1857-1862. On January 10, 1862, he was expelled from the Senate for his support of the South. He then served as a colonel in the Confederate Army.
Marcus Mills “Brick” Pomeroy (1833-1896) was the editor of the La Crosse (Wis.) Daily Democrat. At this point in the Civil War, he gave rousing speeches throughout the Saint Croix Valley to help recruit soldiers. The Prescott Journal of August 27, 1862, includes a lengthy article by Pomeroy in praise of Prescott and the Valley. But he will become a daring Copperhead later in the War, writing spit-fire columns and satirical poetry.
For more information:
- Ruth Anne Tucker’s 1979 Ph.D. dissertation, “M. M. ‘Brick’ Pomeroy: Forgotten Man of the Nineteenth Century,” available digitally on the UW-La Crosse Murphy Library’s website.
- The Wisconsin Historical Society has a package of material of Pomeroy’s writings and a lesson plan for teachers available on their website.
John Pope (1822-1892) was a career Army officer and one of four officers selected to escort the president-elect Lincoln to Washington, D.C. On June 14, 1861, he was appointed a brigadier general of volunteers. He had a brief but successful career in the Western Theater. On May 30, 1862, at the end of the Siege of Corinth, Pope became embroiled in a fight with General William “Bull” Nelson over who deserved credit for occupying the abandoned town. On June 26, Pope assumes command of the Army of Virginia, newly formed from the commands of Frémont, McDowell, and Banks. He is perhaps best known for his defeat at the Second Battle of Bull Run on August 29-30. Following that battle, Pope was sent to Minnesota, where he commanded U.S. troops in the Dakota Conflict of 1862.
David D. (Dixon) Porter (1813-1891) was a career naval officer. He began his naval career at the age of ten as a midshipmen under the command of his father, Commodore David Porter. During the Civil War, Porter was part of a plan to hold Fort Pickens at Pensacola, Florida, for the Union. As acting rear admiral, Porter was in command of the Mississippi River Squadron in the Vicksburg campaign in 1863. After the fall of Vicksburg, he led the naval forces in the difficult Red River Campaign in Louisiana. Late in 1864, Porter was transferred to the Atlantic coast. He led the Navy in the joint assaults on Fort Fisher, which was the last significant naval action of the Civil War.
Fitz John (or FitzJohn) Porter (1822-1901) graduated from West Point and was a career military officer. He is most known for his performance at the Second Battle of Bull Run and his subsequent court martial. His military career was ruined by the controversy. After the War, he worked for almost 25 years to restore his reputation.
William D. (David) Porter (1808-1864), a career naval officer, came from a navy family and signed on his first ship at age 12. In the fall of 1861 he was assigned to assist in establishing the Western Flotilla on the Mississippi. Between January and August 1862, Porter commanded the USS Essex up and down the Mississippi River. The Essex joined in the attack on Fort Henry, where a 32-pound shot pierced her boilers, scalding and temporarily blinding Porter. Porter completed the renovations on the Essex in July and rejoined the Western Flotilla at Vicksburg, Mississippi. On July 22, Porter took the Essex out to confront the Confederate ram CSS Arkansas, but had to withdraw. On August 5, his ship assisted Union Army troops in repelling the Confederate land attack on Baton Rouge. The following morning, heading north to Vicksburg, he confronted the Arkansas once more, this time destroying her.
George May Powell’s public career started in his 20s as a noted statistician in the U.S. Treasury Department during the Civil War. After the war Powell became very involved in publishing companies and founded several social reform organizations. He was a noted public speaker, writer, and cartographer. In later years he organized a trip to Egypt and Palestine. Upon returning to the United States, he gave lectures about his experiences, dressed in his “Oriental outfit.”
Benjamin M. (Mayberry) Prentiss (1819-1901) was a Union major general who ran for Congress prior to his participation in the Civil War. He was also a veteran of the Mexican War. He was ordered to defend railroad lines in Missouri before commanding troops during the Battle of Shiloh. He was the first one under attack at Shiloh. He was considered a hero for defending the “Hornet’s Nest” as long as he did before finally surrendering to the 19th Tennessee.
Sterling Price (1809-1867) was the 11th Governor of Missouri (1853-1857), a lawyer, and a slave owner and tobacco planter. He had served as a U.S. Army brigadier general during the Mexican War. Personally opposed to secession, he was elected presiding officer of the Missouri State Convention in 1861, which voted not to seceed. Outraged by Gen. Nathaniel Lyon’s seizure of the state militia’s camp at St. Louis, Price joined the Confederate cause. Price won the Battle of Wilson’s Creek on August 10, 1861, during which Gen. Lyon was killed in action. Price and his Wilson’s Creek colleague Gen. Ben McCulloch could not agree on how to proceed following the battle and ultimately became bitter rivals.
At the end of the Civil War, rather than surrender Price led what was left of his army to Mexico where he tried unsuccessfully to seek service with the Emperor Maximilian. Price eventually returned to Missouri where he died of cholera in 1867.
For more information:
- General Sterling Price and the Civil War in the West, by Albert Castel (E 467.1 .P87 C3 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
- Sterling Price: Portrait of a Southerner, by Robert E. Shalhope (E 467.1 .P87 S5 1971 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
Roger A. (Atkinson) Pryor (1828-1919) was was a newspaper editor, lawyer, and politician in Virginia who became known for his fiery oratory in favor of secession. He served in the U.S. House of Representatives (1859-March 3, 1861) from Virginia, and in the Confederate States House of Representatives (February-April 1862), also from Virginia. He was colonel of the 3rd Virginia Infantry, and was promoted to brigadier general on April 16, 1862. His brigade fought in the Peninsula Campaign and at the Second Battle of Bull Run. Pryor proved inept as a division commander, and in 1863 he resigned his commission and his brigade was broken up. In August of that year, he enlisted as a private and scout in a Virginia cavalry regiment under General Fitzhugh Lee. Pryor was captured on November 28, 1864, and confined in Fort Lafayette in New York as a suspected spy, but President Lincoln had him released on parole and he returned to Virginia. After the War, Pryor went into law practice with former Union General Benjamin F. Butler.
Isaac C. (Campbell) Pugh (1805-1874) served in the Black Hawk War and the Mexican War, but his most notable military service was during the Civil War. At the start of the Civil War he was the captain of a company in the 8th Illinois Infantry, and three months later formed the 41st Illinois Infantry, becoming its colonel. He led the 41st Illinois at the battles of Fort Donelson, Shiloh, Hatchie’s Bridge, and the sieges of Corinth and Vicksburg.
James S. (Spencer) Rains (1817-1880) was a brigadier general in the Missouri State Guard (Confederate). He was wounded at the Battle of Pea Ridge, in Arkansas, on March 7, 1862, and then ran afoul of his commander, General Earl Van Dorn, during the retreat.
Alexander Ramsey (1815-1903), a native of Pennsylvania, had come to Minnesota when President Taylor offered him the governorship of the recently-organized Minnesota Territory. He served as the first governor of the Territory from 1849 to 1853, and was later elected as the second governor of the new state, serving from 1860 to 1863. Ramsey happened to be in Washington, D.C., in April 1861 when the Civil War began, and was the first governor to offer President Lincoln a volunteer regiment for the Union Army.
For more information, see:
- Alexander Ramsey entry on the Minnesota Historical Society’s Governors of Minnesota website.
Alexander W. (Williams) Randall (1819-1872) was the sixth governor of the state of Wisconsin, serving from 1858 to 1861. He will go on to raise eighteen regiments, ten artillery batteries, and three cavalry units of volunteers for the Civil War before leaving office, exceeding Wisconsin’s quota by 3,232 men. The Union Army created a military camp from the former state fairgrounds in Madison (Wis.), named “Camp Randall” after the governor. (Camp Randall Stadium at the University of Wisconsin sits on the grounds of the Civil War Camp Randall.) In 1861 President Lincoln appointed him as U.S. Minister to the Vatican, and President Johnson appointed him as the 22nd U.S. Postmaster General (1866 to 1869).
For more information, see:
- Gov. Alexander W. Randall entry in the Dictionary of Wisconsin History.
- For images of Alexander Randall, and of Camp Randall in 1862, see Wisconsin Historical Society’s historical images.
Thomas E. G. (Edwin Greenfield) Ransom (1834-1864), a body of soldiers that became Company E of the 11th Illinois Infantry. He was elected its captain, then was commissioned major of the regiment, lieutenant colonel, and on February 15, 1862, became the colonel. In November of that same year he was commissioned a brigadier general. He died from dysentery in 1864, and was breveted a major general after his death. The community of Ransom, in Illinois, is named for him. There is an official Georgia Historical Society marker for him, and he has his own Facebook page.
John Aaron Rawlins (1831-1869) served as a volunteer aide-de-camp, but at Grant’s request, Rawlins joined the United States Army as a captain and assistant adjutant general under Grant’s command. After the war, he served as the 29th U.S. Secretary of War (March-September 1869).
Jesse Lee Reno (1823-1862) graduated from West Point and was a career military officer. He served in the Mexican War and then served at several arsenals and with ordnance. In the fall of 1861 he took command of the 2nd Brigade in the Burnside Expedition. In July 1862 he took command of a division in the Army of the Potomac and he fought his friend, Stonewall Jackson, in the Second Battle of Bull Run. He was killed in battle on September 14, 1862, during the Battle of South Mountain.
Alexander W. (Welch) Reynolds (1817-1876) graduated from West Point and was a career military officer, serving in the Mexican War. When the Civil War started, he went AWOL from the U.S. Army rather than resign his commission and joined the Confederate Army, quickly being promoted to colonel of the 50th Virginia Infantry. Reynolds spent most of the War in the Western Theater in Kentucky and Tennessee. In December 1862 he was Reynolds, commanding a brigade in Carter Stevenson’s division when it was sent Vicksburg. During the Siege of Vicksburg his brigade held a portion of the southern-most sector near the “Salient Work.” Reynolds was promoted to brigadier general in September 1863 and led a brigade during the Chattanooga Campaign. He fought at the battles of Missionary Ridge, Rocky Face Ridge, Resaca, and Adairsville before being wounded in War. After the War, Reynolds was a colonel in the Egyptian Army, along with William W. Lorning and others.
John F. (Fulton) Reynolds (1820-1863) was a graduate of West Point, a career military office, and by the Civil War one of the Union Army’s most respected senior commanders. He was killed early in the Battle of Gettysburg.
Henry M. (Mower) Rice (1816-1894) was one of the first U.S. Senators from neighboring Minnesota, serving from 1858 to March 4, 1863.
For images of Rice see:
Israel B. Richardson (1815-1862), a career Army officer known as “Fighting Dick,” served in the 2nd Seminole War in Florida and in the Mexican War. In 1855 he took up farming in Michigan and when the Civil War broke out, Richardson recruited and organized the 2nd Michigan Infantry. He was appointed a colonel on May 25, 1861. He commanded the Fourth Brigade in Brigadier General Irvin McDowell’s 1st Division at the First Battle of Bull Run (July 21, 1861). His brigade saw limited action at the Battle of Bull Run, but provided covering action for the retreat. He commanded several brigades in the Army of the Potomac and then the 1st Division of the II Corps during the Peninsula Campaign in mid-1862; he was promoted to major general on July 4, 1862. He led his troops at the Second Battle of Bull Run (August 28-30, 2862), and his 1st Division played a key role during the Battle of Antietam (September 17, 1862). He received a non-life-threatening wound at Antietam, but died from infection and pneumonia on November 3, 1862.
John Rodgers (1812-1882) was Union naval commander at the start of the Civil War. At the Battle of Port Royal he led a boat crew ashore under a flag of truce and found the fort abandoned, and he therefore raised the Union flag. Commander Rodgers then organized the Western Flotilla and supervised construction of the first ironclad gunboats on the western rivers. Next he took part in blockading operations off of Savannah in command of the Flag. In April 1862, he assumed command of the experimental ironclad Galena, which operated with distinction in the James River.
William S. (Starke) Rosecrans (1819-1898) was a graduate of West Point where he returned to teach engineering. He received the rank of brigadier general in the regular Union Army on May 16, 1861. While McClellan received the credit for the Union’s victories at Rich Mountain and Corrick’s Ford, Rosecrans’ plans and decisions proved extremely effective.
For more information, see:
- The Edge of Glory: A Biography of General William S. Rosecrans, U.S.A., by William M. Lamers, New York: Harcourt, Brace, 1961 (E 467.1.R7 L3 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
Lovell H. (Harrison) Rousseau (1818-1869) was a lawyer and politician in Kentucky and Indiana before the Civil War, serving in the Indiana House of Representatives. Rousseau fought in the Mexican War, raising a company of volunteers. After that war, he served in the Indiana Senate and after relocating to Kentucky, served in the Kentucky Senate. With the start of the Civil War, Rousseau helped keep Kentucky from seceding and then raised two regiments of Kentuckians. Known as the Louisville Legion, they helped save Louisville from Confederate capture. He was later appointed colonel of the 5th Kentucky Infantry and then promoted first to brigadier general of volunteers and then major general of volunteers. Rousseau fought at the battles of Shiloh, Stones River, Chickamauga, and around Chattanooga. From November 1863 to November 1865, he had command of Nashville, Tennessee.
Albert Rust (1818-1870), was a U.S. Representative from Arkansas from 1855 to 1861. In 1861 he was a delegate to the Arkansas secession congress. He served as colonel of the 3rd Arkansas Infantry.
Edward Salomon (1828-1909) was the eighth governor of Wisconsin, becoming governor upon the death of Governor Harvey in 1862. He was one of four brothers from Germany who distinguished themselves during the Civil War era (Edward, Frederick, Charles, and Herman). Salomon is best remembered for his tireless efforts to raise new regiments and his handling of the 1862 draft riots in Wisconsin.
For more on Salomon, see
- Edward Salomon entry in the Dictionary of Wisconsin History.
Frederick/Friedrich Salomon (1826-1897) was born in Prussia, received a military education and was commissioned in the Prussian army. During the German uprisings of 1848, he supported the democrats and fled the country when the revolution was defeated. He settled in Manitowoc, Wisconsin, in 1848, established himself in business, and soon rose to prominence within the German community in the Midwest. In 1860 he relocated to St. Louis, Missouri. At the outbreak of the Civil War, he joined the 5th Missouri Infantry as a captain, enlisting for a three-month tour. When this was up, he was recalled to Wisconsin to help form the 9th Wisconsin Infantry, a regiment composed mainly of German immigrants. Salomon led his new brigade at the battles of Newtonia, Missouri (September 30, 1862) and Helena, Arkansas (July 4, 1863). In the latter battle, Salomon designed defenses that enabled his Union forces of 4,000 men to turn back 10,000 Confederates. Frederick Salomon was promoted to brigadier general of volunteers on July 16, 1862, and his brother Charles E. Salomon (1824-1881) became colonel of the 9th Wisconsin on August 25, 1862.
For a fuller biography, see
- Frederick Salomon entry in the Dictionary of Wisconsin History.
Robert C. Schenck (1809-1890) was a U.S. Representative from Ohio from 1843-1951, and U.S. Minister to Brazil. Schenck was an early and ardent support of Lincoln for president, and Lincoln appointed him a brigadier-general of Volunteers. At Bull Run, he commanded the Second Brigade in General Daniel Tyler’s First Division. Schenck managed to keep his brigade from becoming part of the original “Great Skedaddle” mob that retreated from the battle.
John McAllister Schofield (1831-1906) graduated from West Point, served in the artillery, and was a professor at West Point and at Washington University in St. Louis. When the Civil War began, Schofield became a major in a Missouri regiment and served as chief of staff to General Nathaniel Lyon. Schofield received the Medal of Honor (in 1892) for “conspicuous gallantry” during the Battle of Wilson’s Creek, where Lyon was killed in action. In November 1861 Schofield was promoted to brigadier general and to major general in November 1862. From 1861 to 1863 he held various commands in the Trans-Mississippi Theater. In 1863 he returned to Missouri as commander of the Department of Missouri. His command in Missouri was marred by controversy, with pro-Union Missourians sending a delegation to Washington DC to plead with President Lincoln to dismiss Schofield—for sympathizing with pro-Confederate Bushwhacker para-military marauders who were attacking loyal Union citizens. In 1864, as commander of the Army of the Ohio, he took part in the Atlanta Campaign, the Battle of Franklin, and the Battle of Nashville. After the War, Schofield served as the military governor of Virginia, as the U.S. Secretary of War (1868-1869), recommended that the United States establish a naval port at Pearl Harbor, was was superintendent of the United States Military Academy (1876-1881), was asked to re-open Fitz John Porter’s court-martial case and found that he had been wrongly convicted. His memoirs, Forty-six Years in the Army, were published in 1897.
Carl (Christian) Schurz (1829-1906) was another German revolutionary—probably the best known of the Forty-Eighters—who came to the U.S. in 1852 and settled in Watertown, Wisconsin, in 1855. There, his wife Margarethe became instrumental in establishing the kindergarten system in the United States and he became involved in politics and the anti-slavery movement. He ran unsuccessfully for Wisconsin lieutenant-governor in 1857 and 1859. Schurz was an early supporter of Lincoln and in 1860 was on the committee that brought Lincoln the news of his nomination as president. Fritz Anneke, a friend of Schurz’s from Germany, will become commander of the 34th Wisconsin Infantry.
In 1861 Lincoln made him ambassador to Spain (July 13-December 18, 1861) and he kept Spain from supporting the South when the Civil War broke out. He then persuaded Lincoln to give him a commission as a brigadier general and he served under John C. Frémont and then under Franz Siegel at the Second Battle of Bull Run (August 28-30, 1862). As a major general of volunteers he served at the Battle of Chancellorsville (April 30-May 6, 1863), the Battle of Gettysburg (July 1-3, 1863), the Chattanooga Campaign (October-November 1863), and was with William Tecumseh Sherman’s army in North Carolina (March-April 1865).
After the War, Schurz was elected to the U.S. Senate (1869-1874) from Missouri, being the first German-American in the Senate. In the 1876 presidential campaign he supported Rutherford B. Hayes, who then named him Secretary of the Interior (1877-1881). Schurz is perhaps best known today for his famous saying: “My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.” (Remarks in the Senate, February 29, 1872, The Congress Globe, page 1287, 42nd Congress, 2nd Session.)
For more information:
- Carl Schurz entry in the Dictionary of Wisconsin History.
- Carl Schurz’s autobiography (E 664 .S39 A337 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
- Americanization of Carl Schurz, by Chester Verne Easum (E 664 .S39 E13)
- Carl Schurz, A Biography, by Hans L. Trefousse (E 664 .S39 T7 1982)
- Carl Schurz and German Unity, by Theodore Schreiber (E 664 .S39 S27)
- Carl Schurz, Militant Liberal, by Joseph Schafer (F 576 .W818 v. 1)
- Carl Schurz, Patriot, by Clara Tutt (E 664 .S39 T8 1960)
- Carl Schurz, Reformer, by Claude Moore Fuess (E 664 .S39 F92)
- German-Speaking Forty-Eighters: Builders of Watertown, Wisconsin, by Charles J. Wallman (F 589 .W3 W35 1992)
Winfield Scott (1786-1866) was a lieutenant general in the U.S. Army and general-in-chief of the army from 1841-1861. As the secession crisis developed during the latter part of 1860, Scott pleaded, unsuccessfully, to President Buchanan to reinforce the southern forts and armories against possible seizure. During the Civil War he conceived the Anaconda Plan, a strategy for the Union to defeat the Confederacy by blockading the Southern ports and cutting the South in two by advancing down the Mississippi River. In November 1861, when he was 75 years old, Scott retired. George B. McClellan succeeds him as the general-in-chief of the army.
For more information:
- Old Fuss and Feathers: The Life and Exploits of Lt.-General Winfield Scott, by Arthur D. Howden Smith (E 403.1 .S4 S6 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library)
- Winfield Scott: The Soldier and the Man, by Charles Winslow Elliott (E 403.1 .S4 E6)
John Locke Scripps (1818-1866) was a lawyer and journalist. In 1861, President Lincoln appointed him postmaster for Chicago, and he held the position for four years. Scripps was one of the founders of the Chicago Tribune and for some years its chief editor. In 1860, he wrote the first biography of Abraham Lincoln ever published (Life of Abraham Lincoln, New York, 1860).
- The UWRF Chalmer Davee Library has a copy of the 1968 reprint of Scripps’ Life of Abraham Lincoln (E 457.3 .S423).
- See also Joseph R. Nightingales, “Joseph H. Barrett and John Locke Scripps, Shapers of Lincoln’s Religious Image,” Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society, vol. 92, no. 3 (Autumn 1999): 238-273.
John Sedgwick (1813-1864) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer who served in the Seminole Wars, the Mexican War, the Utah War, and fought Indians on the western frontier. In the Civil War, he commanded the 2nd brigade of Heintzelman’s division in the Army of the Potomac, and then his own division, for the Peninsula Campaign. He fought at Yorktown and Seven Pines, and was wounded in the arm and leg at the Battle of Glendale (June 30, 1862). In 1863 he played an important role in the Battle of Chancellorsville, but at the Battle of Gettysburg his corps arrived late and only a few units took part in the final Union attacks in the Wheatfield. Sedgwick was killed on May 9, 1864, at the beginning of the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House by a sharpshooter. Just seconds before he had said to his men who were taking cover, “I’m ashamed of you, dodging that way. They couldn’t hit an elephant at this distance.”
Frederick W. (William) Seward (1830-1915) was the son of William Henry Seward Sr., and older brother of General William Henry Seward Jr. He was appointed by President Lincoln to be U.S. Assistant Secretary of State on March 6, 1861, and served until March 4, 1869 (and also served under Rutherford B. Hayes from 1877-1879). On February 21, 1861, Seward had arrived in Philadelphia carrying a letter for his father that described a plot to assasinate President-elect Lincoln as he passed through Baltimore on his way to Washington, D.C., for his inauguration. Based on that information, Lincoln passed through Baltimore at night rather than making a daytime public appearance.
William H. (Henry) Seward Sr. (1801-1872) was the 12th Governor of New York, a U.S. Senator from New York, and on March 5, 1861, would become Lincoln’s Secretary of State. He was an outspoken opponent of the spread of slavery and a dominant figure in the national Republican Party. He was widely regarded as a leading contender for the party’s nomination for president in 1860. Despite his loss, he becomes a loyal member of Lincoln’s cabinet, and will play a role in preventing foreign intervention early in the war. He is perhaps best remembered as Andrew Johnson’s Secretary of State, during which time he arranged for the purchase of Alaska, known at the time as “Seward’s Folly.”
For more information:
- Lincoln, Master of Men: A Study in Character, by Alonzo Rothschild (E 457 .R84 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library); digitally available on Google Books.
Horatio Seymour (1810-1886) was the governor of New York during the Civil War (1863-1864). Seymour was one of the most prominent Democratic opponents of President Lincoln, opposing on constitutional grounds the Lincoln administration’s institution of the military draft in 1863. His efforts to conciliate the rioters during the New York Draft Riots in July 1863 was used against him by the Republicans, who accused him of treason and support for the Confederacy. Seymour was the Democratic nominee for U.S. president in 1868, but lost the election to Ulysses S. Grant.
For more information on Seymour and the Draft Riots:
- The Second Rebellion: The Story of the New York City Draft Riots of 1863, by James McCague (F 128.44 .M3 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
James M. (Murrell) Shackelford (1827-1907) served in a Kentucky unit in the Mexican War at a young age, and returning to Kentucky studied law. He was appointed colonel of the 25th Kentucky Infantry (Union) on January 1, 1862. He recruited another regiment which became the 8th Kentucky Cavalry (Union) with Shackelford as its colonel. On January 1, 1863, he was promoted to brigadier general of volunteers. Shackelford fought at the battles of Fort Donelson, Buffington Island (July 19, 1863), Salineville (July 26), New Lisbon, Cumberland Gap, Blountville, Campbell’s Station, Bean’s Station, and the Siege of Knoxville.
Thomas W. (West) Sherman (1813-1879) was a career military officer. He graduated from West Point and served with distinction in the Mexican War. At the start of the Civil War, Sherman was serving in the U.S. Artillery when he received a commission as brigadier general in May, 1861. Sherman, commanding the ground forces, captured Port Royal in a combined Army-Navy operation. During the May 27, 1863, attack on Port Hudson, Sherman was severely wounded, which led to the amputation of his right leg. His injuries were so severe that he was not expected to live. Even the newspaper in his hometown (Newport, Rhode Island) printed an obituary for him. For the rest of the war he held only administrative commands in Louisiana.
William T. (Tecumseh) Sherman (1820-1891) was an American soldier, businessman, educator, and author. As a general in the American Civil War, he received recognition for his military strategy and criticism for the harshness of the “scorched earth” policy that he used against the Confederates in Georgia in his March to the Sea—also known as the Savannah Campaign—in late 1864. He accepted the surrender of all the Confederate armies in the Carolinas, Georgia, and Florida in April 1865.
The UWRF Chalmer Davee Library has numerous books on William T. Sherman, including:
- March to the Sea and Beyond: Sherman’s Troops in the Savannah and Carolinas Campaigns, by Joseph T. Glatthaar (E 476.69 .G53)
- McClellan, Sherman, and Grant, by T. Harry Williams, 1962 (E 467 .W5)
- Memoirs of General William T. Sherman, by Himself, 1875 (E 467.1 .S55 S52), copies in both the main stacks and the UWRF Archives, plus a 1957 reprint (E 467.1 .S55 S52 1957)
- Memories of Gen. W. T. Sherman, written by himself, with an appendix, bringing his life down to its closing scenes, also a personal tribute and critique of the memoirs by Hon. James G. Blaine (E 467.1 .S55 A3 1891)
- Sherman and His Campaigns: A Military Biography, b6 S. M. Bowman and R. B. Irwin (E 467.1 .S55 B713 1865)
- Sherman, Fighting Prophet, Illustrated with Reproductions of Maps, Engravings and Photographs, by Lloyd Lewis, 1932 (E 467.1 .S55 L48)
- Sherman Letters: Correspondence Between General Sherman and Senator Sherman from 1837 to 1891, edited by Rachel Sherman Thorndike (E 415.7 .S55 1969)
- Sherman’s Civil War: Selected Correspondence of William T. Sherman, 1860-1865, edited by Brooks D. Simpson and Jean V. Berlin (E 467.1 .S55 A4 1999)
James Shields (1810-1879) American politician as well as an army officer. During his political career, he became a United States senator for Minnesota, Illinois, and Missouri. He is the only person in American history to be a senator for three different states. For his military career, he became a Brigadier General during the Mexican-American War. He was wounded in the Battle of Kernstown and was the only General to defeat Stonewall Jackson in a battle during the civil war.
Henry Hopkins Sibley (1816-1886), not to be confused with Henry Hastings Sibley (1811-1891), former governor of neighboring Minnesota from 1858-1860. This H. H. Sibley was a West Point graduate and career Army officer from 1838 until 1861, when he resigned to join the Confederate Army. He lead the Confederate forces in New Mexico Territory, where he hoped to capture Albuquerque, Santa Fe, and Fort Union on the Santa Fe Trail and establish a supply line to the South.
Daniel E. (Edgar) Sickles (1819-1914) was a New York politician (U.S. House) involved in a number of scandals, and during the Civil War was one of the most prominent political generals. Sickles had raised thousands of recruits for the Excelsior Brigade; however, he was not in charge of the Brigade at the Battle of Williamsburg nor at the Second Bull Run Battle. Sickles was a close ally of General Joseph Hooker, who gave him command of the III Corps in February 1863, making Sickles the only corps commander without a West Point education. Sickles is best remembered for his insubordination at the Battle of Gettysburg, which resulted in the near destruction of his III Corps, and the end of his military career.
Franz Sigel (1824-1902) was a German military officer who migrated to the United States in 1852 with other German Forty-Eighters. In 1857, he became a professor at the German-American Institute in Saint Louis, where he was influential in the Missouri immigrant community and attracted Germans to the Union and anti-slavery causes. He was commissioned a colonel of the 3rd Missouri Infantry in May 1861, and was promoted to brigadier general in early August 1861.
James F. (Fowler) Simmons (1795-1864) was a U.S. Senator from Rhode Island. He served two terms: 1841-1847 and 1857-August 15, 1862, when he resigns.
Henry Warner Slocum (1827-1894) was a career military office who graduated from West Point and served in the Seminole War. When the civil war started Slocum was appointed colonel of the 17th New York Infantry, which he led at the first Battle of Bull Run. He was one of the youngest major generals in the Army and fought numerous major battles in the Eastern Theater and in Georgia and the Carolinas. At the Battle of Gettysburg he was accused of indecision on the battlefield, earning him the derogatory nickname “Slow Come”. After the war he served in the U.S. House of Representatives.
John Slidell (1793-1871) was a U.S. Representative, 1843-1845, and a U.S. senator from Louisiana, 1853 to February 4, 1861. Slidell was released from Federal custody and set sail for England on January 1, 1862. From England he sailed to Franch, but failed to gain French recognition for the Confederate States. But he did succeed in negotiating a loan from private French interests, and in securing an ironclad ship, the Stonewall, for the Confederacy. Uncertain of his safety at home after the war, Slidell and his family stayed in Paris. He never sought pardon from the Federal government for his Confederate service, dying in London, England, in 1871.
- For more on the Trent Affair, see the Naval History Blog posting for November 8, 1861.
Charles F. (Ferguson) Smith (1807-1862), who was a career military officer. As a brigadier general of volunteers, he had command of the District of Western Kentucky, and commanded U.S. Grant’s Second Division at the Battle of Fort Donelson. Smith played an important role in the capture of Fort Donelson, and General Grant acknowledged that he “owed his success at Donelson emphatically” to Smith. On the way to what would become the Battle of Shiloh, Smith’s leg was seriously injured jumping into a rowboat. Due to the injury, he was forced to hand over command of his division to W. H. L. Wallace. Smith died on April 25, 1862, from an infection in his leg.
For more information:
- April 30, 1862, post: Death of General C. F. Smith
- April 30, 1862, post: Who Are the Union’s Western Generals?
(Edmund) Kirby Smith (1824-1893), originally from Florida, graduated from West Point and was a career military officer, serving in the Mexican War and in Texas. He resigned his commission on April 6, 1861, to join the Confederate Army and was promoted to brigadier general in June. He fought at the First Battle of Bull Run (July 21, 1861), where he was severely wounded. He returned to duty as a major general and division commander in the Army of Northern Virginia. In February 1862 he was sent west and cooperated with Braxton Bragg in the invasion of Kentucky. He won the Battle of Richmond (August 30, 1862), received the Confederate “Thanks of Congress” for it, and was promoted to lieutenant general. Smith is best known for his command of the Trans-Mississippi Department beginning in January 1863, a department that never had more than 30,000 men to cover a huge area. After the fall of Vicksburg (July 4, 1863) and Port Hudson (July 9, 1863), he was he was virtually cut off from the Confederate capital at Richmond, and his area became known in the Confederacy as “Kirby Smithdom.” The war in the West devolved into one of small raids and guerrilla activity, yet his army was the only significant Confederate field army left after Robert E. Lee surrendered on April 9, 1865. Smith negotiated the surrender of his army on May 26, 1865, and signed the terms of surrender on June 2. He then fled to Mexico and Cuba to escape prosecution, but took the oath of amnesty on November 14, 1865. Following the War, Smith was in the telegraph and railroad business. In 1870 he became the president of the University of Nashville, and was a professor at the University of the South in Tennessee from 1875 to his death in 1893.
G. W. (Gustavus Woodson) Smith (1821-1896) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer for 12 years, who fought in the Mexican War, and then resigned to be a civil engineer. He was commissioned a Confederate major general in September of 1861, and served in northern Virginia, fighting at the Battle of Seven Pines/Fair Oaks. On May 31, 1862, Smith briefly took command of the Army of Northern Virginia after General Joseph E. Johnston was wounded; however, Jefferson Davis replaced him with Robert E. Lee the following day. Smith resigned his commission as a major general in February 1863, and became a volunteer aide to General P.G.T. Beauregard for the rest of that year. He was commissioned a major general in the Georgia state militia in June 1864 and commanded its first division until the end of the war.
Martin L. (Luther) Smith (1819-1866) was one of the few Northern-born generals to fight for the Confederacy. He graduated from West Point and spent much of his early military career in the South. In February 1862 he was appointed colonel of the Confederate 21st Louisiana Infantry. He served under General David Twiggs, helping plan the defense of New Orleans. In April of that year he was promoted to brigadier general. In May of 1863 he took charge of constructing the defenses of Vicksburg, as well as leading a division. After Vicksburg fell, he was held as a prisoner of war for seven months and was exchanged in early 1864. He served briefly as the head of the Engineer Corps for the entire Confederate Army, when he became the chief engineer for the Army of Northern Virginia. Later, he held the same position for the Army of Tennessee. As chief engineer of the Department of Alabama, Mississippi, and East Louisiana at the end of the war, he prepared the defenses of Mobile, Alabama, where he remained until the city fell. After the War he established a civil engineering company in Savannah, Georgia, but died less than a year later.
William F. (Farrar) Smith (1824-1903), a graduate of West Point, was a civil engineer and member of the New York City police commission. He was appointed a Union brigadier general on August 13, 1861. At the Battle of Williamsburg, Smith led the 2nd Division of the IV Corps, which included the 5th Wisconsin Infantry. He led his division with conspicuous valor during the Battle of Antietam and opened the “Cracker Line” to provide supplies and reinforcements to the besieged troops in Chattanooga.
Wyman Spooner (1795-1877) was a Wisconsin politician who at first aligned himself with the abolitionists, and then joined the Republican party after its organization in 1854. He was state assemblyman (1850, 1851, 1857, 1861) and state senator (1862-1863). In 1863 he was elected lieutenant governor, serving in this capacity from 1864 to 1870.
For more information:
- Wyman Spooner in the Dictionary of Wisconsin History.
William Sprague (1830-1915), a Union Party candidate, he was elected as the 27th governor of Rhode Island in 1860, the youngest governor of any state at the time. Believing that the Civil War would not last long, Sprague accompanied then-Colonel Ambrose E. Burnside and the Rhode Island brigade in the First Battle of Bull Run (July 21, 1861). The Confederate victory made it clear to Sprague that the war would last longer. Although he was offered a commission as a brigadier general of Volunteers on August 9, 1861, he declined the appointment. Sprague served as governor until he resigned to become a U.S. Senator from Rhode Island, serving two terms from March 1863 to 1875.
Edwin M. (McMasters) Stanton (1814-1869) was the 25th U.S. Attorney General from December 20, 1860 to March 4, 1861, under President Buchanan, and the 27th U.S. Secretary of War from January 20, 1862-May 28, 1868, under first President Lincoln and then President Johnson. He was strongly opposed to secession and many historians credit Stanton with changing President Buchanan’s policy to one of denouncing secession. Stanton becomes President Lincoln’s closest adviser during the Civil War. He will be very effective in administering the huge War Department and the massive military resources of the North.
For more information:
- Stanton: The Life and Times of Lincoln’s Secretary of War, by Benjamin P. Thomas and Harold M. Hyman (E 467.1 .S8 T45 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
- Stanton, Lincoln’s Secretary of War, by Fletcher Pratt (E 467.1 .S8 P7 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
John C. (Converse) Starkweather (1830-1890), a lawyer, helped organize the Milwaukee Light Guard. During the Civil War, Starkweather serves as colonel of the 1st Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry from 1861 to 1863), when he is commissioned brigadier general, U.S. Volunteers.
For more information:
Frederick Steele (1819-1868) graduated from West Point and was a career military officer. He served in the Mexican War, in the Yuma War in California, and in Minnesota Territory, Kansas Territory, and Nebraska Territory. In May 1861 we was appointed a major in the 11th U.S. Infantry and fought at the Battle of Wilson’s Creek. In September 1861 he became colonel of the 8th Iowa Infantry, at the end of January 1862 he was appointed a brigadier general of U.S. volunteers, and in March 1863 he was confirmed as a major general of volunteers. He fought at the Battle of Chickasaw Bayou in December 1862 and in the Battle of Arkansas Post in January 1863. For the Siege of Vicksburg, his division was renamed the 1st Division in General William T. Sherman’s XV Corps. A monument to Steele stands on the Vicksburg National Military Park.
Adolph von Steinwehr (1822-1877) was a German-born military officer who emigrated to the U.S. in 1854. At the start of the Civil War, Steinwehr raised the 29th New York Infantry, which consisted primarily of other German immigrants, and he commanded the regiment at the First Battle of Bull Run in 1861. A year later Steinwehr was in command of the 2nd Division (including the 29th N.Y.) in Franz Sigel’s I Corps, which was assigned to John Pope’s Army of Virginia.
Henry S. (Schreiner) Stellwagen (1803-1866) was a career naval officer. In 1855, Stellwagen was promoted to Commander; in 1861, he helped plan and execute attacks on Forts Hatteras and Clark at Hatteras Inlet.; in 1862 he was commissioned Captain; and in mid-1863, he was given command of the Mediterranean Squadron and remained there until 1864.
Alexander H. (Hamilton) Stephens (1812-1883) was a U.S. Representative from Georgia, both before the Civil War and after Reconstruction. He was a political ally and personal friend of Robert Toombs. Stephens was elected as a delegate to the Georgia secession convention and during the convention, as well as during the 1860 presidential campaign, Stephens called for the South to remain loyal to the Union. He voted against secession in the convention, but asserted the right to secede if the federal government continued allowing northern states to nullify the Fugitive Slave Law. He was elected to the Confederate Congress, and was chosen Vice President of the provisional government. He was then elected Vice President of the Confederate States of America. He took the oath of office on February 11, 1861, and served until May 11, 1865.
Thaddeus Stevens (1792-1868) was a Republican representative from Pennsylvania and one of the most powerful members of the U.S. House of Representatives. He was the chairman of the House’s Ways and Means Committee and he wrote much of the financial legislation that paid for the Civil War.
Carter L. (Littlepage) Stevenson (1817-1888) graduated from West Point and was a career military officer who served in having spent much of his private fortune in support of the Union, was financially ruined the Seminole Wars, the Mexican War, and the Utah War. He resigned his commission when Virginia seceded from the Union in early 1861 and was commission a lieutenant colonel in the Confederate army. At Beauregard’s recommendation, he was promoted to colonel of the 53rd Virginia Infantry, and then to brigadier general in February 1862. Recognized again for his leadership ability, he was promoted to major general in October 1862 and led his division at the Battle of Perryville. In December, Stevenson with 10,000 men was sent to reinforce John C. Pemberton’s force at Vicksburg, Mississippi, and his division bore the brunt of fighting at the Battle of Champion’s Hill. During the Siege of Vicksburg, Stevenson commanded the right of the entire Confederate defensive line.
Charles P. (Pomeroy) Stone (1824-1887) was a career military officer, civil engineer, and surveyor, who had served with distinction in the Mexican War. Stone was held responsible for the Union defeat at Ball’s Bluff. He was arrested and imprisoned for almost six months, mostly for political reasons, but never received a trial. After his release he would not again hold a significant command during the Civil War.
William M. (Milo) Stone (1827-1893) was the sixth governor of Iowa, serving from 1864-1868. He had served as the captain of Company B, 3rd Iowa Infantry, and was taken prison at the Battle of Shiloh. After being paroled, he was promoted to colonel of the 22nd Iowa Infantry and was wounded at the Battle of Vicksburg. Stone was a friend of Abraham Lincoln and was present when Lincoln was assassinated at Ford’s Theatre. Stone helped carry the wounded Lincoln across the street. After leaving the governor’s office in 1868, Stone served one term in the Iowa House of Representatives, 1877–78, and was appointed Assistant Commissioner and then Commissioner of the U.S. General Land Office.
George Stoneman, Jr. (1822-1894) was a career military officer who graduated from West Point, where he was roommates with Thomas J. (Stonewall) Jackson. At the beginning of the Civil War, he refused David E. Twiggs’ order to surrender Fort Brown, Texas, to the Confederates. In the Army of the Potomac, he commanded the Cavalry Reserve and then the Cavalry Division, with the title Chief of Cavalry. During the Peninsula Campaign, he did not get along well with General George B. McClellan, who did not undertand how to make proper use of cavalry. McClellan’s replacement, General Joseph Hooker, had a better understanding of the strategic value of cavalry and put Stoneman in charge. But during the Battle of Chancellorsville, Hooker believed Stoneman did little and considered him one of the principal reasons for the Union defeat at there. Hooker needed to deflect criticism from himself and relieved Stoneman from his cavalry command, sending him back to Washington, D.C. for a desk job, Chief of the U.S. Cavalry Bureau. After the War he will be the 15th governor of California, serving from 1883 to 1887.
J.E.B. or Jeb (James Ewell Brown) Stuart (1833-1864), was the Confederate Army’s best cavalry officer. A graduate of West Point, he was a veteran of the frontier conflicts with Native Americans, Bleeding Kansas, and participated in the capture of John Brown at Harpers Ferry. He started the Civil War as a lieutenant colonel of Virginia Infantry and on July 1, 1861, was assigned to command all the cavalry companies of the Army of the Shenandoah, organized as the 1st Virginia Cavalry Regiment. Just before the First Battle of Bull Run, on July 16, 1861, he had been promoted to full colonel. He led his regiment in the First Battle of Bull Run and participated in the pursuit of the retreating Union troops. Stuart served under Stonewall Jackson in his Shenandoah Valley campaign, and then in increasingly important cavalry commands in the Army of Northern Virginia until his death on May 12, 1864, having been mortally wounded the previous day at the Battle of Yellow Tavern.
Samuel D. Sturgis (1822-1889) was a graduate of West Point and a veteran of the Mexican War. When the Civil War broke out, Sturgis served in the 1st U.S. Cavalry. He was promoted to major and in August 1861, at the Battle of Wilson’s Creek, he succeeded to command of the Federal forces after the death of Brigadier General Nathaniel Lyon.
Alfred Sully (1821-1879), a graduate of West Point, was a career officer in the Union Army. In 1861 his troops occupied Saint Joseph, Missouri, where he declared martial law to suppress the violent secessionist uprising in the city. On February 3, 1862 he became the colonel of the 1st Minnesota Infantry, and in September 1862 he was promoted to brigadier general. He will spend most of the Civil War years commanding cavalry troops out West in the “Indian Wars.”
Charles Sumner (1811-1874) was a U.S. Senator from Massachusetts from 1851 until his death in 1874. In the Senate, he was a leader of the Radical Republicans who sought to destroy slavery and radically transform the South. In 1856, South Carolina Representative Preston Brooks nearly killed Sumner on the Senate floor for ridiculing slave owners.
Edwin V. (Vose) Sumner (1797-1863) was career U.S. Army officer and was the oldest field commander of any Army Corps on either side during the Civil War. Sumner was the senior officer to accompany President-elect Abraham Lincoln from Springfield, Illinois, to Washington, D.C., in March of 1861. On March 12, Sumner was nominated by Lincoln to replace Gen. Twiggs and thus he became the first new Union general created by the secession crisis. He was then sent to command the Department of the Pacific in California, where he stayed until November 1861, when he was brought back East to command a division. In May 1862, he was promoted to major general in the Union Army. He led the II Corps of the Army of the Potomac through the Peninsula Campaign, the Seven Days Battles, the Maryland Campaign, and the Battle of Fredericksburg. Sumner died March 21, 1863, from a heart attack..
George Sykes (1822-1880), a graduate of West Point and career military officer, served in the Mexican War and the Seminole War. Early in the Civil War, he commanded U.S. Army regulars and his men often referred to themselves as “Sykes’ Regulars.” After the Battle of Antietam, Sykes was promoted to major general, and when corps commander Major General George G. Meade was promoted to lead the Army of the Potomac at the end of June, 1863, Sykes assumed command of the V Corps. At the Battle of Gettysburg, Sykes’ corps supported the beleaguered III Corps on the Union’s left flank.
George H. (Henry) Thomas (1816-1870) was another career military officer. A native of Virginia, Thomas chose to stay with the Union when the Civil War broke out. He was promoted in rapid succession to be lieutenant colonel (replacing Robert E. Lee) and colonel (Albert Sidney Johnston) in the regular army, and then brigadier general of volunteers. On December 2, 1861, Thomas was assigned to command the 1st Division of the Army of the Ohio.
Lorenzo Thomas (1804-1875) was the Adjutant General of the U.S. Army at the beginning of the Civil War. He graduated from West Point and was a career military officer, having served in the Seminole War and the Mexican War. He was General William Butler’s chief of staff, and from 1853 to 1861, was General Winfield Scott’s chief of staff. He became the Army’s Adjutant General just before the Civil War broke out and retired in that position.
David Tod (1805-1868) was the 25th governor of Ohio. He was a Democrat who supported the war effort and gained the nickname “the soldier’s friend.”
Robert A. (Augustus) Toombs (1910-1885) was a U.S. Senator from Georgia until February 4, 1861. He became the first Secretary of State for the Confederacy on February 25, 1861, and was a Confederate general in the Civil War.
Joseph G. (Gilbert) Totten (1788-1864) was a career military engineer. He was appointed Chief Engineer of the U.S. Army in 1838 and served in that position until his death from pneumonia in 1864. He was greatly admired by Gen. Scott because of their service together in the Mexican-American War.
Lyman Trumbull (1813-1896) was a U.S. Senator from Illinois from 1855-1873. As chairman of the Judiciary Committee (1861-72), he co-authored the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which prohibited slavery. During the impeachment trial of President Andrew Johnson, Trumbull was one of seven Republican senators (along with James W. Grimes) to break party ranks and vote for acquittal. Trumbull’s first wife, Julia Maria Jayne, was an erstwhile friend of Mary Todd Lincoln, and the sister of Lincoln’s personal physician in Springfield, Dr. William Jayne, whom Lincoln appointed as the first governor of Dakota Territory.
David E. (Emanuel) Twiggs (1790-1862) was a career Army officer and had fought in the Mexican-American War. After that war he was breveted a major general and given command of the Department of Texas where part of his charge was guarding the border with Mexico. He was absent on sick leave from his command for most of 1860, replaced temporarily by Robert E. Lee, but he returned to San Antonio and resumed command on December 13, 1860, in the midst of the secession uproar. A strong advocate of states rights, he requested on January 13, 1861, that he be relieved of command, but orders to that effect were not issued until the January 28. On February 1, the Texas Secession Convention voted to secede, and three days later appointed a trio of commissioners to confer with Twiggs at his San Antonio headquarters. Should Twiggs decline to surrender the federal arsenal and all public property to the commissioners, Benjamin McCulloch was commissioned to take the place by force. On February 15, Twiggs received the order relieving him of his command and Col. Carlos A. Waite, the next senior officer in the department, was named his successor. Waite was a strong Unionist and the Texans reasoned that he would not surrender the federal property and the committee ordered McCulloch to move on San Antonio. On February 18, Twiggs surrendered all U.S. property in the state to the Texas secessionists. Twiggs’s unwillingness to fire upon Texans in the streets of their own cities was not appreciated in the North. Twiggs was vilified and dismissed from federal service on March 1. He later accepted a commission in the Confederate Army. Due to poor health, he retired on October 11, 1861, and he died July 15, 1862, from pneumonia.
For more details:
- “Twiggs, David Emanuel” article by Thomas W. Cutrer and David Paul Smith in the Handbook of Texas Online, published by the Texas State Historical Association.
John Tyler (1790-1862), 10th President of the United States (1841-1845). Tyler was a long-time advocate of states’ rights. He re-entered political life in 1861 to sponsor and chair the Virginia Peace Convention, and became a delegate to the Provisional Confederate Congress.
William L. Utley (1814-1887) was a Wisconsin state assemblyman from 1851-1852 and a state senator from 1861-1862. Appointed state adjutant general in 1861, Utley is instrumental in securing the rapid mobilization of Wisconsin units for the Civil War. “The Camp at Racine is named ‘Utley’ out of compliment to the gallant and popular Adjutant General” (from the June 19, 1861, Hudson North Star). In 1862 he will be commissioned colonel of the 22nd Wisconsin Infantry.
Clement L. (Laird) Vallandigham (1820-1871) was a U.S. Representative from Ohio and a and leader of the Copperhead faction of anti-war Democrats. Lincoln’s Secretary of War, Edwin M. Stanton, and Vallandigham were “intimate personal friends” before the Civil War. Both Vallandigham and Stanton were Democrats, but had opposing views of slavery and Vallandigham was a vigorous supporter of constitutional states’ rights. In 1862, Vallandigham lost his bid for a third term in the U.S. House of Representatives, by a relatively large vote. In 1863, after General Ambrose E. Burnside issued General Order Number 38, warning that the “habit of declaring sympathies for the enemy” would not be tolerated in the Military District of Ohio, Vallandigham gave a major speech on May 1, 1863, charging that the war was being fought not to save the Union but to free the slaves by sacrificing the liberty of all Americans. On May 5 Vallandigham was arrested for violating General Order Number 38, and was tried by military court on May 6-7. On May 19, 1863, President Lincoln ordered Vallandigham deported and sent to the Confederacy. When he was within Confederate lines, Vallandigham said: “I am a citizen of Ohio, and of the United States. I am here within your lines by force, and against my will. I therefore surrender myself to you as a prisoner of war.” Vallandigham left the Confederacy, ending up in Canada where he declared himself a candidate for Governor of Ohio. He won the Democratic nomination in absentia, but lost the election in a landslide to pro-Union War Democrat John Brough.
Horatio P. (Phillips) Van Cleve (1809-1891) was a graduate of West Point who served at frontier posts in Michigan Territory and then resigned in 1836 to settle in Michigan. an engineer for the state of Michigan in 1855, and then United States Surveyor of Public Lands in Minnesota. When the Civil War began, he became colonel of the 2nd Minnesota Infantry. Van Cleve served under General George H. Thomas at Mill Springs, and was later promoted to brigadier general of volunteers in recognition for his services at that battle. He commanded a brigade at the Siege of Corinth and a division at Perryville. Van Cleve was wounded at Stones River, but returned to his division upon recovery.
Earl Van Dorn (1820-1863) was a career military officer who fought in the Mexican War, the Seminole Wars, and the Comanche Wars. With the start of the Civil War, he resigned his U.S. Army commission and was appointed a brigadier general in the Mississippi Militia in January 1862. When Jefferson Davis became the president of the Confederacy, Van Dorn replaced him as major general and commander of Mississippi’s state forces. He is known for his defeats at Pea Ridge and Corinth in 1862, and his murder by a civilian in May 1863.
Andrew J. Van Vorhes (1824-1873) was a newspaperman, the son of a newspaperman. He came to Stillwater, Minnesota, in 1855 and in 1856 established the Stillwater Messenger, which he ran until 1868. In 1860 he was a member of the Minnesota Legislature and in 1862 was selected as an agent to aid with the Indian payments, which is why he was at Fort Ridgely. In 1863 he will be nominated as an assistant Quartermaster with the rank of captain and he will serve in that capacity into 1865.
Zebulon Baird Vance (1830-1870) was the 37th governor of North Carolina from 1862 to 1865.
John Bordenave Villepigue (1830-1862) a West Point graduate and career military officer. In the Civil War, he was initially commissioned as a captain of artillery but was quickly promoted to colonel of an infantry regiment. After defending Fort McRee in Pensacola harbor, he was promoted to chief of engineers and artillery on the staff of General Braxton Bragg. In early 1862 he was promoted again to brigadier general. General P.G.T. Beauregard put him in charge of Fort Pillow, Mississippi. On October 3-4, 1862, he commanded a brigade at the Second Battle of Corinth. He distinguished himself in both the successful opening attack and the covering of the eventual retreat. He died of pneumonia shortly after arriving in Port Hudson, Louisiana on 9 November 1862, where he had been sent to recuperate.
James S. (Samuel) Wadsworth (1807-1864) had spent the majority of his life managing his family’s estate in New York, later entering politics. He was a Free Soil Republican and was a member of the 1861 Washington Peace Conference that attempted to prevent the Civil War. Prior to the war, he had no military experience at all. He had served as a civilian volunteer aide-de-camp to Major General Irvin McDowell at the First Battle of Bull Run on July 8. McDowell recommended him for command and, on August 9, 1861, Wadsworth was commissioned a brigadier general. On October 3, 1861, he received command of the 2nd Brigade in McDowell’s Division.
Carlos A. Waite (?-1866) was a career U.S. Army officer. On June 5, 1860, he became colonel of the U.S. First Infantry. On February 15, 1861, at the height of the secession crisis, Gen. Twiggs was relieved of his command of the Department of Texas at his own request and Waite, the next senior officer in the department, was named his successor. Waite was a strong Unionist and his impending appointment to department command precipitated Benjamin McCulloch’s siege of federal troops in San Antonio on February 18, which culminated in Twiggs’s surrender of all United States property in the state to Texas authorities. Ironically, Waite received his appointment as department commander on February 19, the day after Twiggs had turned over United States forts and heavy equipment and pledged to remove federal troops immediately by way of the coast. On March 13, 1865, Waite was brevetted to brigadier general for “long and faithful service” in the army. He retired from active duty on February 8, 1864, and died on May 7, 1866.
For more information:
- “Waite, Carlos Adolphus” article by Thomas W. Cutrer in the Handbook of Texas Online, published by the Texas State Historical Association.
John George Walker (1821-1893) joined the U.S. Army in 1846 to fight in the Mexican War and remained in the service until he resigned in 1861 to join the Confederate Army. In January 1862, he was promoted to brigadier general and served in the Peninsula Campaign. In September, his division occupied Loudoun Heights, overlooking Harpers Ferry, until Stonewall Jackson captured Harpers Ferry on September 15. Walker then served under General Longstreet at South Mountain and Antietam. He was then transferred to the Trans-Mississippi Department, where he organized 12 Texas regiments into a division which was nicknamed “Walker’s Greyhounds.” In March 1863, Walker’s Greyhounds will be given the task of attacking General Ulysses S. Grant’s supply line opposite the besieged Vicksburg, Mississippi. On April 30, 1864, Walker’s troops played a critical role in the Confederate victory at the Battle of Mansfield. At the end of the Civil War, Walker fled to Mexico, where he remained for several years. Returning to the United States, he later served as the U.S. Consul in Bogotá, Colombia, and as a special commissioner to the Pan-American Convention.
John Grimes Walker (1835-1907) graduated at the head of his class at the U.S. Naval Academy in 1856 and was a career naval officer, rising to the rank of admiral. During the Civil War, Walker distinguished himself under Rear Admiral David D. Porter during the Mississippi River campaigns, participating in the engagements at Forts Jackson and St. Philip, which resulted in the fall of New Orleans. He later took part in the Navy’s operations in the Vicksburg Campaign, participating in the actions against Haines Bluff, Arkansas Post, the Yazoo Pass expedition, the attack on Fort Pemberton, and the capture of Yazoo City. At the siege of Vicksburg, Walker commanded the naval gun battery attached to the 15th Army Corps. His subsequent war service included operations which resulted in the capture of Fort Fisher, and he participated in the ensuing bombardments of Forts Anderson and Caswell on the Cape Fear River and in the capture of Wilmington, North Carolina.
L. P. (LeRoy Pope) Walker (1817-1884) was the first Confederate Secretary of War, serving from February 25-September 16, 1861, and is perhaps best known for issuing the orders we see here to fire on Fort Sumter. He serves briefly as a brigadier general in the Confederate Army.
Lewis “Lew” Wallace (1827-1905) was a lawyer, politician, and author. A graduate of West Point, Wallace served in the Mexican War. At the beginning of the Civil War, Wallace was appointed state adjutant general in Indiana, and then was appointed the colonel of the 11th Indiana Infantry. After brief service in western Virginia, he was promoted to brigadier general of volunteers and given the command of a brigade. Originally left behind to guard the recently taken Fort Henry, Wallace was called to Fort Donelson to organize a division of reinforcements. He made a key decision to help McClernand’s forces, which stabilized the Union line. Wallace then led a counter attack and retook lost ground. He is promoted to major general as of March 21, 1862. Wallace’s most controversial command was yet to come, at the Battle of Shiloh, where he continued as the 3rd Division commander under Grant. Wallace failed to reinforce Sherman’s division in a timely manner, and after the battle became the scapegoat for the horrible casualties the Union suffered at Shiloh.
After the Civil War Wallace served as the 11th Governor of New Mexico Territory (1878-1881) and U.S. Minister to the Ottoman Empire (1881-1885). Wallace authored the historical novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ, published in 1880, a bestselling book since its publication and perhaps better known today for its 1959 film adaptation with Charlton Heston.
For more information:
- Lew Wallace, Militant Romantic, by Robert E. Morsberger, Katharine M. Morsberger (PS 3136 .M6 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
- Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ, by Lew Wallace, 1922 edition (PS 3134 .B4 1922 in the UWRF Chalmer Davee Library).
W. H. L. (William Hervey Lamme) Wallace (1821-1862) was considered by General Grant to be one of the Union’s greatest generals. He started the Civil War as a private in the 11th Illinois Infantry and then became its colonel. He rose up the ranks and commanded a brigade of General McClernand’s division of Grant’s Army of the Tennessee at the Battle of Fort Donelson. During the battle, much of McClernand’s division had been driven back with heavy losses and Wallace’s coolness under fire was especially noted. For his service at Fort Donelson Colonel Wallace was appointed a brigadier general of volunteers. At the Battle of Shiloh, Wallace managed to withstand six hours of assaults by the Confederates, directly next to the famous Hornet’s Nest, or Sunken Road. When his division was finally surrounded, he ordered a withdrawal and many escaped, but he was mortally wounded and only later found barely alive on the battlefield. He died three days later on April 10, 1862.
For more information:
- General W.H.L.Wallace page on the Public Art Murals of Ottawa, Illinois
- Wallace also has a Facebook page
- April 30, 1862, post: Who Are the Union’s Western Generals?
James H. (Harman or Harmon) Ward (1806-1861) was a career U.S. naval officer. In the spring of 1861, Secretary of the Navy Gideon Welles summons Ward to Washington, D.C., to plan for a relief expedition for Fort Sumter. Opposition from Gen. Scott forces cancellation of the plans. Once the war breaks out, Ward pushes for front-line duty; he becomes the first naval officer killed in the war, dying on June 27, 1861.
C. C. (Cadwallader Colden) Washburn (1818-1882) was a U.S. Congressman, Civil War officer, industrial empire builder, founder of General Mills, and the 11th governor of Wisconsin. Few people of his generation had as much influence on Wisconsin history.
Washburn, a Republican, served in the U.S. Congress from 1855-1861, and again after the Civil War, 1867-1870 (five terms in all). At the same time, he broadened his business operations in banking and real estate. Early in 1861 he moved to La Crosse and was sent as a delegate to an unsuccessful peace convention held in Washington, D.C., that had hoped to prevent the impending Civil War.
After the outbreak of hostilities, Washburn accepted an appointment as colonel of the 2nd Wisconsin Cavalry, on October 10, 1861. The following spring he led it south into Arkansas to join Union forces in the West. Washburn was promoted to brigadier general in June 1862. He took command of not only of his regiment, but also the entire 2nd Cavalry Brigade. On July 7, 1862, it defeated Confederate forces at Cotton Plant, Arkansas, and then marched east to take possession of Helena, Arkansas. From there it supported the Union campaign against Vicksburg, Mississippi.
In March 1863 Washburn was commissioned a major general with command over all Union cavalry in West Tennessee, headquartered at Memphis. After the Siege of Vicksburg in the summer of 1863, Washburn’s command was moved to New Orleans. In August he led 16,000 men in support of the Red River Expedition, occupying and pacifying large areas along the Texas Coast. He spent most of 1864 and the spring of 1865 in command at Memphis and Vicksburg.
After leaving the military in May 1865, Washburn returned to La Crosse. In 1866, he opened his first flour mill in Minneapolis, Minnesota, which became known as General Mills, and served again in Congress, from 1867 to 1870. He was elected governor of Wisconsin in the fall of 1871 and served from 1872-1874.
For more information:
- “C.C. Washburn: The Evolution of a Flour Barron,” by Albert Kelsey in the Wisconsin Magazine of History, vol. 88, no. 4, (2005): 38-51.
- Sketch of Gen. Washburn’s Civil War service by E.B. Quiner in his book, Military History of Wisconsin (Chicago, 1866): 980-81.
- Washburn, Gov. Cadwallader Colden, in the online Dictionary of Wisconsin History.
“Long” John Wentworth (1815-1888) was the editor of the Chicago Democrat, and a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, 1843-1851, 1853-1855, 1865-1867. In 1861 was the mayor of Chicago.
Joseph Wheeler (1836-1906) graduated from West Point in 1859 and after graduating attended the U.S. Army Cavalry School. He picked up the nickname ”Fightin’ Joe” fighting Indians in New Mexico. For much of the Civil War he served as the senior cavalry general in the Confederate Army of Tennessee and fought in most of its battles in the Western Theater. After the War Wheeler was a U.S. Representative from Alabama.
Julius White (1816-1890) was a lawyer before the war. He received a commission as colonel of the 37th Illinois Infantry in September 1861. At the Battle of Pea Ridge (March 7, 1862), he led a brigade of two Illinois regiments. In June 1862 he was promoted to brigadier general and during the Second Battle of Bull Run his “Railroad” brigade was posted in West Virginia, on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad. When Robert E. Lee invaded Maryland, White retreated to Harper’s Ferry and joined Colonel Dixon S. Miles’ garrison there. White outranked Miles, but he followed military protocol and let Miles retain command. Miles, however, proved to be incapable of mounting an effective defense and ran up the white flag. Miles was mortally wounded and White had to carry out the formal surrender. For surrendering, White was brought before a court of inquiry, but acquitted.
Louis T. Trezevant Wigfall (1816-1874) was a Texas politician who served in the U.S. Senate, 1859-March 23, 1861, and in the Confederate Senate, 1862-1865. He arrived in Charleston as the siege of Fort Sumter commenced. While he was indeed serving as a volunteer aide to General Beauregard, he had not see the General in two days when he took it upon himslef to row out to Fort Sumter. The official delegation from Beauregard’s staff—Major Lee, Porcher Miles, Senator Chesnut, and Roger A. Pryor—arrived later with the General’s terms.
Charles Wilkes (1798-1877) was a naval officer and explorer. He led the United States Exploring Expedition, which was commonly known as the “Wilkes Expedition 1842. Wilkes was promoted to the rank of commander in 1843 and that of captain in 1855. At the outbreak of the Civil War, he was assigned to the command of the U.S.S. San Jacinto to search for the Confederate commerce destroyer Sumter. ”The Notorious Wilkes” —as Bermuda media called him—was officially thanked by Congress, but later the British government pressured President Lincoln to disavow his action.
For more information:
- “Charles Wilkes” article on the Naval History and Heritage Command website.
- For more on the Trent Affair, see the Naval History Blog posting for November 8, 1861.
Morton S. (Smith) Wilkinson (1819-1894) moved to Stillwater, Minnesota, in 1847 and was elected to the first territorial legislature in 1849. He served as a U.S. Senator from Minnesota from 1859 to 1865 and was chairman of the Committee on Revolutionary Claims, and as a U.S. Representative from Minnesota from 1869 to 1871. He is best known for introducing the U.S. Senate to a letter written to Jefferson Davis by Jesse D. Bright on March 1, 1861, involving firearm trades, which resulted in Bright being expelled from the Senate.
Orlando B. (Bolivar) Willcox (1823-1907) was a graduate of West Point and a career military officer, serving in the Mexican War and the Third Seminole War, but he resigned from the Army in 1857 He was practicing law when the Civil War started and he was appointed colonel of the 1st Michigan Infantry. Willcox was wounded and captured in the First Battle of Bull Run. In 1895 he will be given the Medal of Honor for his “most distinguished gallantry” during the Battle. He will be released and exchanged in a little over a year, and led a division at the Battle of Antietam and a corps at the Battle of Fredericksburg. During the 1863 draft riots, he commanded the District of Indiana and Michigan, but again led a division at Knoxville and during Grant’s Overland Campaign. After the War, he served as the commander of the Department of Arizona, where he fought Apache Indians. The town of Willcox, Arizona is named in his honor.
Thomas R. Williams (1815-1862) graduated from West Point and became a career military officer who served in the Mexican War. In the Civil War, he was assigned to Major General Benjamin Butler’s command in the land operations against New Orleans, Louisiana. Williams and his 2nd Brigade—that included the 4th Wisconsin Infantry—were assigned the task of occupying Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He was killed there on August 5, 1862.
August Willich (1810-1878) was a Prussian Army officer who immigrated to the United States in 1853. In 1858, he became editor of the German Republican in Cincinnatti, a German-language free labor newspaper, in which work he continued until the opening of the Civil War. With the outbreak of the Civil War, Willich actively recruited German immigrants in the southwestern Ohio region and he then joined the 9th Ohio Infantry. He saw action at the Battle of Rich Mountain and at Carnifex Ferry. At the request of Indiana Governor Oliver P. Morton, Willich assumed command of the 32nd Indiana Infantry, also known as the First German.
Fernando Wood (1812-1881) was a Democratic politician. He served as mayor of New York City (1855-1857 and 1860-1862) and as a U.S. Representative from New York (1841–1843, 1863–1865, and 1867–1881). Wood was one of many New York Democrats sympathetic to the Confederacy because he wanted the profitable Southern cotton trade to continue. He even suggested that New York declare itself a free city in order to continue the trade.
Thomas J. (John) Wood (1823-1906), born in rural Munfordville, Kentucky, was a career military officer who served in the Mexican War and on the American frontier. During early days of the Civil War, Wood helped organize, train, and equip several volunteer regiments in Indiana, and in October 1861, he was promoted to brigadier general of Indiana volunteers.
John E. (Ellis) Wool (1784-1869) was a career Army officer. Wool was the oldest general on either side of the war (age 77 when the Civil War began). He commanded the Department of the East, and his quick and decisive moves secured Fort Monroe, Virginia, for the Union.
John L. (Lorimer) Worden (1818-1897) was the captain of the USS Monitor. He was a career naval officer. As the secession crisis moved toward civil war in early 1861, Lieutenant Worden was sent to Pensacola with secret instructions for the local Naval commander. While returning to Washington, D.C., by rail he was arrested by Southern authorities and held as a prisoner of war for several months, an experience that badly damaged his health. In February 1862, upon resuming active duty, he was given command of the Monitor. Worden received serious eye injuries in the Battle of Hampton Roads, and he had to relinquish command. This battle made him a major war hero in the North and he was promoted to Commander in July 1862. In late 1862 he took command of the ironclad Montauk and joined the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron off Port Royal, South Carolina. In January 1863, he led his ship in the bombardment of Fort McAllister. In February 1863, Captain Worden took his ship into the Ogeechee River, where he destroyed the Confederate privateer Rattlesnake with five well-placed shots. His last action came on April 7, 1863, when the Montauk participated in an attack on Charleston, South Carolina.
For more information:
- John Lorimer Worden article on the Naval Historical Center website.
William Lowndes Yancey (1814-1863) was a journalist (Greenville Mountaineer [S.C.]), politician (U.S. House, 1844-1846; Confederate Senator, 1862-1863), orator, and diplomat. A member of the group known as the Fire-Eaters, Yancey was one of the most effective agitators for Southern secession and a rhetorical defender of slavery. During the Civil War, Confederate President Jefferson Davis appointed Yancey to head a diplomatic delegation to Europe, hoping to secure formal recognition for the Confederacy. Yancey suffered from ill health for much of his life and died July 27, 1863, at the age of 48.
Richard Yates (1815-1873) was the 13th Governor of Illinois, from January 1861-January 1865. Yates will send more volunteers to serve as Union troops than any other state.
A. H. (Austin H.) Young (d. 1905) was “a resident of Prescott [Wisconsin] in the early 60s and was successively while residing there clerk of the court, district attorney and state senator. He was lately associated with Frank M. Nye in the practice of law and was one of the state University law lecturers. He was a brother of the late Arthur Young of Prescott.” From Young’s obituary in the River Falls Journal, February 23, 1905.
Charles Zagonyi/Károly Zágonyi (1822-1867?), known in the United States as Charles Zagonyi, was a military officer from Hungary. He was an aide to General Frémont and commander of his Body-Guard. Zagonyi is best known for the charge he lead on October 25, 1861, which routed the Confederates holding Springfield. Zagonyi will be sidelined when Frémont is removed from command, and nothing is known of his whereabouts after 1867.
Felix Kirk Zollicoffer (1812-1862) was a newspaperman, a U.S. Representative from Tennessee, and a brigadier general in the Confederate Army. He led a Confederate invasion of eastern Kentucky and was killed at the Battle of Mill Springs on January 19, 1862.