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VMI's Civil War Generals
John R. Jones, Class of 1848

VMI Civil War Generals top level 

  • Biographical Information
    • Early Life
      John Robert Jones, born March 12, 1827 at Harrisonburg, Virginia. Parents: David S. Jones and Harriet Yost. Attended private schools in Harrisonburg before entering VMI.
    • VMI record
      Entered VMI on July 28, 1845 and was graduated on July 4, 1848; stood 7th in a class of 24 graduates.
    • Marriage
      Married twice. 1st Miss Brashear of Annapolis, MD (no issue). 2nd Miss Weatherall of Baltimore, MD; divorced after approx. one year; they had one daughter. He also had two children by his mistress, Malinda Rice, a former slave who came to work in Jones' household at the age of 16. Rice's and Jones' granddaughter, Carrie Allen McCray, recently published a history of this relationship: Freedom's Child, the Life of A Confederate General's Black Daughter (Algonquin, 1998).
    • Pre-Civil War
      Taught school in Florida and was Principal of a military school in Urbanna, Maryland.
    • Civil War
      Lt. Col., 33rd Virginia Infantry Regiment; appointed Brigadier General (see this letter from Stonewall Jackson regarding the appointment) in 1862 but was never confirmed; commanded 2d Brigade under Jackson at Cold Harbor and Malvern Hill; accused of cowardice by subordinates for his actions at Antietam and Chancellorsville and never resumed command; captured by Union troops in Smithburg, Maryland, on July 4, 1863 and never exchanged; imprisoned at Fort Warren, Mass, until end of war.
    • Post-war
      Businessman and commissioner in chancery for circuit court in Harrisonburg, VA; died April 1, 1901, Harrisonburg.