VMI Civil War Generals

Brief biographical sketches of VMI alumni and faculty who served as general officers during the Civil War.  For additional information, contact the Archives.

Related resource: Comprehensive list of alumni general and flag rank officers for all eras.

 Biographical Information

  • Early Life
    Raleigh Edward Colston, b. Paris, France on October 31, 1825. Adopted son of Dr. Raleigh Edward Colston (1796-1881) and his wife Maria Theresa, Duchess of Valmey (ca. 1775-1845). The young Colston was sent to the United States in 1842, in care of his uncle Edward Colston of Berkeley Co. [West] Virginia, to complete his education.
  • VMI record
    Entered VMI on July 8, 1843; was graduated on July 4, 1846, standing 4th in a class of 14.
  • Marriage
    Louise Meriwether Bowyer of "Thorn Hill," Rockbridge Co., Virginia. Two daughters: Mary Frances and Louise Elizabeth.
  • Pre-Civil War
    Professor of French at VMI from 1846 until outbreak of war. In November 1859, he accompanied a contigent of VMI cadets assigned to guard duty at the execution of abolitionist John Brown.
  • Civil War
    Commissioned Col. 16th Virginia Infantry Regiment; 1862 Dec. appointed Brigadier General and led brigade under Longstreet in the Peninsula; given brigade under Jackson in April 1863 and commanded a division at Chancellorsville; served under Beauregard in defense of Petersburg in 1864; in command at Lynchburg at end of war.
  • Post-war
    Established military school in North Carolina;Colonel Egyptian army, 1873-1879; War Dept. clerk, 1882-1894; died 1896, at Soldiers' Home, Richmond, VA; buried Hollywood Cemetery, Richmond.

Related collection in VMI Archives   Raleigh E. Colston Papers.

Biographical Information

  • Early Life
    John Echols, born March 20, 1823, Lynchburg, Virginia; son of Joseph Echols and Eliza Frances Lambeth.
  • VMI record
    attended VMI from August 15, 1840 until August 14, 1841, when he resigned; Honorary graduate, VMI Class of 1843.  
  • Pre-Civil War
    graduate Washington College (now Washington and Lee University); studied law at Harvard; practiced law briefly in Shenandoah Valley, then moved to Union, Monroe County [West] Virginia where he was a county prosecutor; in 1860, helped to organize and was leader of the Monroe Guards, a local militia unit. This unit subsequently became part of the 27th Virginia Infantry (Co. D).
  • Marriage
    1st- Mary Jane Caperton
    2nd- Mrs. Mary C. Reid
  • Civil War
    Commanded 27th Virginia Infantry Regiment; severely wounded at Kernstown; promoted April 1862 to Brigadier General; brigade commander in Division of General John C. Breckinridge; at Battle of New Market (May 15, 1864) commanded infantry brigade
  • Post-War
    Returned to law practice in Staunton; was President of National Valley Bank, and of Chesapeake, Ohio and Southwestern Railroad Company; died in Staunton, Virginia on May 24, 1896; buried Thornrose Cemetery in Staunton.

Biographical Information

  • Early Life
    Birkett Davenport Fry, born June 24, 1822 in Kanawha County, [now] West Virginia; son of Thornton Fry and Eliza Thompson.
  • VMI record
    Entered VMI on July 20, 1840 as a member of the Class of 1843; resigned on June 2, 1841.
  • Pre-Civil War
    Entered West Point in 1842, but left before graduating because of an academic deficiency (math); practiced law; lst Lieut., United States Army, during Mexican War; practiced law in California, 1849-1855; took part in Walker's expedition to Nicaragua; returned to California where he remained until 1859, when he moved to Tallassee, Alabama; managed cotton mill owned by his wife's family.
  • Marriage
    Martha Micou Baker in 1853, the daughter of William and Ann Micou of Augusta, GA.
  • Civil War
    At outbreak of Civil War commissioned Colonel, 13th Alabama Infantry Regiment; wounded at Seven Pines, Antietam, Chancellorsville, and Gettysburg; appointed Brigadier General in May 1864 and commanded Walker's and Archer's brigades at Cold Harbor; commanded the military district in Augusta, GA until end of war.
  • Post-war
    Returned to cotton manufacturing business in Alabama and Richmond, Virginia; died January 21, 1891, Richmond, VA.

Garland Portrait     Civil War Commission document

Biographical Information 

  • Early Life
    Samuel Garland, born December 16, 1830 at Lynchburg, Virginia. Parents: Maurice Garland, an attorney, and Caroline M. Garland. Maternal grandparents: Spottswood Garland and Lucinda Rose. Before enrolling at VMI Samuel attended Randolph Macon College.
  • VMI record
    Matriculated on October 22, 1846 at age 16; was graduated on July 4, 1849, standing 3rd in a class of 24.
  • Marriage
    Elizabeth Campbell Meem in 1856; she died on June 12, 1861; their only child, Samuel, died in August 1861.
  • Pre-Civil War
    Studied law at University of Virginia; practiced in Lynchburg, VA. Following John Brown's raid at Harpers Ferry in 1859, Garland organized the Lynchburg Home Guard.
  • Civil War
    Colonel, 11th Virginia Infantry Regiment; led his regiment 1st Manassas; wounded at Williamsburg but did not leave field; promoted to Brigadier General in May 1862 and commanded his brigade at Seven Pines, Gaines's Mill, and Malvern Hill; mortally wounded on Sept 14, 1862, at South Mountain; buried Lynchburg, VA.

The image on this page is from the Stegman collection (VMI Archives manuscript 0275)

 Biographical Information

  • Early Life
    William Young Conn Humes, born June 1830 in Abingdon, Virginia. Parents: John Newton Humes and Jane Conn White.
  • VMI record
    Enrolled at VMI on November 20, 1848; was graduated on July 4, 1851, standing 2nd in a class of 29 (distinguished graduate); classmate of Gen. Alfred J. Vaughan. 
  • Marriage
    Married 1st- Margaret Preston White of Abingdon, VA; 2 children; Margaret died in Knoxville before 1863.
    2nd- 1863, Sallie Elder of Memphis, TN; 4 children.
  • Pre-Civil War
    Read law; lawyer in Knoxville and Memphis, Tennessee.
  • Civil War
    1861-Captain Artillery, commanded guns at New Madrid; captured and imprisoned at Johnson's Island; after exchange became cavalry officer; appointed Brigadier General Nov. 1863 and led brigade in Wheeler's Corps fought in Tennessee, Georgia the Carolinas; appointed Major General March 1865.
  • Post-war
    Resumed law practice in Memphis; died September 11, 1882 in Huntsville, Alabama

 

Biographical Information

  • Early Life
    Alexander Caldwell Jones, 1830, Marshall County [West] Virginia. Parents: Garrison B. Jones and Martha Houston.
  • VMI record
    Enrolled at VMI on July 28, 1846; was graduated on July 4, 1850, standing 16th in a class of 17.
  • Marriage
    1st- Ella Clemens (1857) of Wheeling [West] Virginia; Issue- Clemens Ap-Catesby Jones; Minnie Clemens Jones.
    2nd- name unknown; one daughter
  • Pre-Civil War
    Studied law; District Attorney in Minnesota territory; probate judge, St. Paul, MN; Minnesota's first adjutant general (1858-1860)
  • Civil War
    Lt. Col. and Colonel, 44th Virginia Infantry Regiment; Chief of Staff to Generals Johnston, Magruder, Walker; resigned staff position to serve in field; promoted to Brigadier General; at end of war was in command of brigade in Texas.
  • Post-war
    Diplomat; U.S. Consul in Japan and China; died January 13, 1898 in China.

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 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, wrote a history about her family: 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.

Biographical Information 

  • Early Life
    James Henry Lane, b. July 28, 1833, Mathews Court House,Virginia. Parents: Henry Gardner Lane and Mary Ann Henry Barkwell
  • VMI record
    Enrolled at VMI on July 22,1851; was graduated on July 4, 1854,standing 2nd in a class of 14.
  • Marriage
    Charlotte Randolph Meade of Richmond, VA; they had four daughters (Lidie, Mary, Kate, Lottie)
  • Pre-Civil War
    Attended University of Virginia, 1856-1857; civil engineer; teacher (VMI, West Seminary at Tallahassee, FL., North Carolina Military Institute at Charlotte, NC).
  • Civil War
    Major and Lt. Col., 1st North Carolina Infantry Regt; Colonel, 28th North Carolina Infantry; appointed Brigadier General Nov. 1862; commanded his brigade at Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, the Wilderness, and Petersburg.
  • Post-war
    Educator; taught at various universities, notably Virginia Polytechnic Institute, Missouri School of Mines, and Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical College (now Auburn University), where he was professor of civil engineering. He died at Auburn, AL on September 21, 1907 and is buried there.
  • Papers
    An extensive collection of Lane's personal papers are located at the Auburn University Archives. VMI has information about his cadetship, photos, and other biographical information, as well as 2 miscellaneous family documents (Manuscript #304). 

 

Biographical Information

  • Early Life
    William Mahone, born 1826 December 1 at on a farm near Monroe, Southampton Co., Virginia. Parents: Fielding Jordan Mahone, a merchant in Southampton Co., and Martha Drew. Paternal Grandparents: William Mahone (b. Ireland) and Nancy Jordan.
  • VMI record
    Enrolled at VMI on July 20, 1844 at age of 17½; was graduated on July 5, 1847, standing 8th out of 12 graduates. Mahone supposedly told fellow VMI cadet William Pryor (Class of 1848) the following story about his entrance into VMI:
    "Mahone's father ran a tavern in Southampton County and one day a man in great style with a fine pair of horse, carriage and negro servant drove up to the tavern. Soon they began to gamble and Mahone senior lost most of his money. He called his young son, William, and told him to take his hand --he was going to go to sleep. When he returned, young Mahone had won all of the man's money, horses and carriage, and they were gambling then for the servant. The father told his son to give him the money. Young Mahone said: "Here is what you lost. I am going to keep my winnings and educate myself." With these winnings he came to VMI."
     
  • Marriage
    Married Otelia Butler on February 8, 1855; she was the daughter of Dr. Robert Butler of Smithfield, Isle of Wight Co., Virginia and Otelia Voinard of Petersburg, VA. William and Otelia had 13 children, 3 of whom lived into adulthood (William, Robert, and Otelia).
  • Pre-Civil War
    Teacher at the Rappahonnock Academy, Caroline Co., Virginia, 1848-1849; 1851-1861: civil engineer; Chief Engineer and subsequently President, Chief Engineer and General Superintendent of the Norfolk and Petersburg railroad.
  • Civil War
    Lt. Col. and Colonel of the 6th Virginia Infantry Regiment; promoted to Brigadier General November 1861; during the Peninsular Campaign led his brigade at Seven Pines and Malvern Hill; also fought at 2nd Manassas, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, the Wilderness, and Spotsylvania; promoted to Major General on July 30, 1864 for his performance at the Battle of the Crater (near Petersburg, VA).
  • Post-war
    Returned to engineering and continued to be instrumental in developing railway system in Virginia; unsuccessful bid for governor in 1877; United States Senator, 1881-1887; died October 8, 1895; buried Blandford Cemetery, near Petersburg, VA.

Biographical InformationJohn McCausland Photo

  • Early Life
    Born St. Louis, Missouri on September 13, 1836. Parents: John McCausland (b. County Tyrone, Ireland) and Harriett Kyle (b. Botetourt Co., Virginia). After the death of his parents (ca. 1849) he came to Mason County [West] Virginia to live with his uncle, Alexander McCausland.
  • VMI record
    Enrolled at VMI on August 2, 1853; was graduated on July 4, 1857, standing first in a class of 22 (distinguished graduate).
  • Marriage
    Emmett Hannah, 1878; 3 sons and 1 daughter.
  • Pre-Civil War
    Studied at University of Virginia; Assistant Professor at VMI (Math and Tactics); in 1859 accompanied the detachment of VMI cadets sent to stand guard at John Brown's execution.
  • Civil War
    Commissioned Colonel, 36th Virginia Infantry; April 1862-May 1864 commanded brigade in Dept. of Western Virginia; appointed Brigadier General 1864 May 18; led cavalry brigade against Gen. Hunter in Shenandoah Valley in May-June 1864 and delayed Union advance upon Lynchburg, VA. until Confederate Gen. Early could occupy the city; led cavalry raid into Pennsylvania and was responsible for the burning of Chambersburg, PA.
  • Post-war
    Spent several years in Europe and Mexico before returning to his farm in West Virginia; died at his home near Point Pleasant, West Virginia, on January 23, 1927.

Biographical Information

  • Early Life
    Thomas Taylor Munford, born March 29, 1831 at Richmond, Virginia. Parents: George Wythe Munford and Lucy Singleton Taylor. 
  • VMI record
    Enrolled at VMI on July 30, 1849; was graduated in July 1852, standing 14th in a class of 24.
  • Marriage
    1st- In 1853, Henrietta Tayloe (died 1863)
    2nd- In 1866, Emma Tayloe
  • Pre-Civil War
    Cotton planter in Mississippi; farmer in Bedford Co. VA.
  • Civil War
    Lt. Col., 13th Virginia Mounted Infantry; Col., 2nd Virginia Cavalry; in the Shenandoah Valley served under Jackson, succeeded Turner Ashby, fought at Cross Keys, Harrisonburg, White Oak Swamp, 2nd Manassas, Antietam; appointed Brigadier General November 1864; took command of Fitzhugh Lee's division and fought at Five Forks, High Bridge, Sayler's Creek, and Appomattox.
  • Post-war
    Iron manufacturer and farmer; President, VMI Board of Visitors, 1884-1888; died February 27, 1918 at the home of his son in Uniontown, Alabama; buried Lynchburg, Virginia

Biographical Information Civil War General, Class of 1849

  • Early Life
    William Henry Fitzhugh Payne, born January 27, 1830, Fauquier Co., Virginia; Parents: Arthur Alexander Morson Payne and Mary Conway Mason Fitzhugh. 
  • VMI record
    Enrolled at VMI on August 12, 1846; he was a cadet for only one year; declared an honorary graduate by the Board of Visitors in 1873.
  • Marriage
    In 1852, Mary Elizabeth Winston Payne (cousin); they had 10 children; a son Harry F., attended VMI as a member of the class of 1877.
  • Pre-Civil War
    Studied law at the University of Virginia; began law practice in Warrenton, Virginia in 1851; Commonwealth's Attorney of Fauquier Co.
  • Civil War
    Capt., Black Horse Cavalry; Major, 4th Virginia Cavalry; commanded regiment at Williamsburg, where he was severely wounded and captured; exchanged and returned to duty as Lt. Col., 2d North Carolina Cavalry; led 2d NC at Chancellorsville; captured during Stuart's Pennsylvania raid and imprisoned at Johnson's Island; exchanged and appointed Brigadier General November 1864; served in Valley under Early; during final operations around Richmond commanded brigade under Thomas T. Munford.
  • Post-war
    Resumed law practice; general counsel for the Southern Railway Co.; died March 29, 1904 in Washington, DC.

Biographical Information Civil War General, Class of 1848

  • Early Life
    Robert Emmet Rodes, born Lynchburg, Virginia, on March 30, 1829; son of General David Rodes and Martha Yancey.
  • VMI record
    was graduated from the Virginia Military Institute in July 1848, standing 10th in a class of 24 graduates; Assistant Professor (Physical Science, Chemistry, Tactics) at VMI, 1848-1850.
  • Marriage
    In September 1857 married Virginia Hortense Woodruff (1833-1907), of Tuscaloosa, Alabama. 2 children: Robert Emmet Rodes, Jr. (1863-1925) and a daughter, Bell Yancey Rodes (1865-1931).
  • Pre-Civil War
    In 1850 began Civil Engineering career, working on various railroad projects in Alabama and elsewhere in the south; in 1860 was elected Professor of Applied Mechanics at VMI, but never served in this capacity because of the outbreak of war.
  • Civil War
    May 1861 was commissioned Col. 5th Alabama Infantry Regt; Oct 1861 appointed Brigadier General, commanding his brigade at Fair Oaks, Gaines's Mill, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville; promoted Major General May 1863; led his division at Gettysburg, the Wilderness, and Spotsylvania; went to Shenandoah Valley in June 1864, where he served under Early and fought at Kernstown and elsewhere; killed at Winchester, VA, on 19 September 1864; buried Presbyterian Cemetery, Lynchburg, VA.

Biographical Information

  • Early Life
    James Edwin Slaughter, born 1827, Culpeper Co., Virginia. Parents: Daniel French Slaughter and Letitia Madison. Grandparents: Philip Slaughter/Margaret French Strother; William Madison/Frances Throckmorton.
  • VMI record
    Enrolled on August 6, 1845 and resigned on July 6, 1846.
  • Marriage
    Never married
  • Pre-Civil War
    Served in United States Army from 1847 until outbreak of Civil War, when he resigned to join Confederate Army.
  • Civil War
    1861 appointed 1st Lt. CSA Artillery and served on Beauregard's staff in Alabama and Florida; appointed Brigadier General in March 1862; on staff of Gen. Bragg in Mississippi and Alabama; 1863 April to Texas as Magruder's Chief of Artillery; remained in Texas until end of war; he went to Mexico after Lee's surrender.
  • Post-war
    Civil Engineer; lived in Mexico for several years and then returned to live in Mobile, Alabama and subsequently in New Orleans, LA; died in Mexico City on January 1, 1901 and was buried there.

Biographical Information Civil War General, Class of 1858

  • Early Life
    James Barbour Terrill, born February 20, 1838, Bath County, Virginia. Parents: William H. Terrill, a lawyer, and Elizabeth Pitzer.
  • VMI record
    Enrolled at VMI on October 18, 1854; was graduated on July 5, 1858, standing 16th in a class of 19.
  • Marriage
    Charlotte Eucebia Drewry (Drury) of Chesterfield Co., in late 1861 or early 1862. Issue: James Mercer Terrill (b. October 31, 1862; died around age 18) and Emily Barbour Terrill (b. 1864 d. 1943. Emily married Henry Heth Vaden.
  • Pre-Civil War
    Studied law at Washington College in Lexington, Virginia under Judge John W. Brockenbrough; practiced law in Bath County,Virginia. Appointed Major, Cavalry, in 1859 by Gov. Henry A. Wise.
  • Civil War
    Major and Lt. Col., 13th Virginia Infantry Regiment; Brigadier General, May 30, 1864; battles included the Shenandoah Valley campaign, Gaines's Mill, White Oak Swamp, Malvern Hill, Cedar Mountain, Fredericksburg, Wilderness, Spotsylvania; killed in battled on May 30, 1864, near Bethesda Church, Hanover County,Virginia; his nomination as BG was confirmed on the day he was killed. Full text 1861 Terrill letter

    "Brother against Brother": William Rufus Terrill, James's brother, was an 1853 West Point graduate who served as a Brigadier General in the Union army during the war. He was also killed in battle, at Perryville, KY, in October 1862.

 

Biographical Information

  • Early Life
    William Richard Terry, born March 12, 1827 at Liberty (now Bedford), Virginia. Parents: William Terry of Bedford County and Lettie Johnson of Pittsylvania Co.
  • VMI record
    Entered VMI on July 27, 1846 and was graduated on July 4, 1850, standing 15th in a class of 17.
  • Marriage
    Mary Adelaide Pemberton (died 1910) in 1856; they had 3 sons and 3 daughters.
  • Pre-Civil War
    Attended University of Virginia; subsequently a merchant.
  • Civil War
    Raised Cavalry company in Bedford, 1861; Col., 24th Virginia Cavalry; 1862- commanded Kemper's Brigade, Kemper's Division, 1st Corps, Army of Northern Virginia; 1863-1864- commanded Kemper's Brigade, Dept. of North Carolina and Dept. of Richmond; wounded at Gettysburg; appointed Brigadier General, May 1864; commanded Kemper's (old) Brigade, Pickett's Div., 1st Corps, Army of Northern VA; at Cold Harbor and Petersburg.
  • Post-war
    State legislator, prison superintendent, in charge of a soldiers' home; died Bedford Co., Virginia on March 29, 1897.

Biographical Information Civil War General, Class of 1851

  • Early Life
    Alfred Jefferson Vaughan, Jr., born May 10, 1830, in Dinwiddie County, Virginia. Parents: Alfred Jefferson Vaughan and Dorothy (nee) Vaughan.
  • VMI record
    Enrolled at VMI on July 17, 1848; was graduated on July 4, 1851, standing 15th in a class of 29; in his final year at VMI he was a cadet captain and company commander.
  • Marriage
    Martha Jane Hardaway (1838-1911) in 1856; they had 8 children (Mary Virginia, Mary Eliza, Lucy, Alfred J., Jr., Samuel, Willie, infant, ___ Franklin).
  • Pre-Civil War
    Civil Engineer in Missouri, California, and Mississippi. When the war began he was living in Marshall Co., Mississippi.
  • Civil War
    Capt., Lt. Col. and Col. of the 13th Tennessee Infantry Regt.; commissioned Brigadier General, 1863 (Army of Tennessee); led brigade at Missionary Ridge and Atlanta campaign until Vining's Station (4 July 1864), where he was severely wounded (lost leg).
  • Post-war
    Farmer in Mississippi; businessman; general agent of the National Grange, organizing state granges of Mississippi, Arkansas, and Tennessee; clerk of court of Shelby Co., TN; died in Indianapolis, IN on October 1, 1899; buried Elmwood Cemetery, Memphis.

Biographical Information

  • Early Life
    James Alexander Walker, born August 27, 1832, Augusta Co., Virginia. Parents: Alexander Walker and Hannah Hinton. Paternal grandparents: John Walker and Elizabeth Connelly. Maternal grandparents: Benjamin Hinton and Sarah Hopkins.
  • VMI record
    Entered VMI on August 23, 1848; court-martialed and dismissed May 1852, for disobedience in the classroom of Maj. Thomas J. (Stonewall) Jackson; he subsequently challenged Jackson to a duel; granted honorary degree in 1872 in recognition of his war career.
  • Marriage
    In 1858, Sarah A. Poague [Poage] of Augusta Co., Virginia. They had six children.
  • Pre-Civil War
    Studied law at the University of Virginia (1854-1855) and began the practice of law in Newbern, Pulaski Co., Virginia. Elected Commonwealth's Attorney for Pulaski Co. in 1860.
  • Civil War
    Organized Pulaski Guards which became Co. C of the 4th Virginia Infantry; commissioned Lt. Col. 13th Virginia Infantry; Promoted to Brigadier General in the Stonewall Brigade in May 1863; severely wounded at Spotsylvania Court House on May 12, 1864; in Jan. 1865 was assigned to Early's Division.
  • Post-war
    Resumed law practice in Newbern; active in local and state politics; served two terms in state legislature; 1877 elected Lieutenant Governor of Virginia, serving until 1881; 1895-1899 served in U.S. Congress; died at Wytheville, Virginia on October 20, 1901.

Biographical Information

  • Early Life
    Reuben Lindsay Walker, born Albemarle County, Virginia on May 29, 1827.
  • VMI record
    Entered VMI on September 5, 1842 and was graduated on July 4, 1845, standing 19th in a class of 20.
  • Pre-Civil War
    After graduating was a civil engineer and farmer; was engaged in farming in New Kent Co., Virginia when Civil War broke out.
  • Marriage
    married (1st) Maria Eskridge (d. 1854 leaving four sons) (2nd) Sally Elam, in 1857
  • Civil War
    Commissioned Captain, Purcell artillery battery, in 1861; promoted to Major in March 1862 and appointed A.P. Hill's Chief of Artillery; he served with Hill until the end of the war; promoted Lt. Col., Col., and finally (in Feb. 1865) Brigadier General.
  • Post-Civil War
    Farmer and civil engineer; died at his residence at Point of Fork, Virginia on June 7, 1890; buried Hollywood Cemetery, Richmond, VA

Biographical Information Civil War General, Class of 1847

  • Early Life
    Gabriel Colvin Wharton, born July 23,1824, Culpeper, Virginia.
  • VMI record
    Enrolled at VMI on September 1, 1845; was graduated on July 5, 1847, standing 2nd in a class of 12 (distinguished graduate).
  • Marriage
    Married Nannie Radford in 1863. One son, William.
  • Pre-Civil War
    Civil Engineer in west (Arizona and elsewhere).
  • Civil War
    Colonel, 51st Virginia Infantry Regiment; served in Floyd's western Virginia campaign; appointed Brigadier General Sept. 1863; commanded brigade guarding railroads in southwestern Virginia; fought at New Market, Cold Harbor, and in Valley campaign.
  • Post-war
    Civil Engineer in southwestern Virginia; instrumental in building railroad in New River Valley; died May 11, 1906 at Radford, Virginia; buried Radford.