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Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson

Date of Birth:      January 21, 1824
Hometown:         Clarksburg, WV
Education:           West Point, 1846
Final Wartime Rank:    Lieutenant General
Final Peacetime Rank:  N/A

Date of Death:     May 10, 1863
Place of Death:    Guinea Station, VA
Buried At:           Lexington, VA

Major Battles:        First Manassas, Jackson's 1862 Valley Campaign, Cross Keys, Port Republic, Peninsula Campaign, Seven Days, Cedar Mountain, Second Manassas, Antietam Campaign, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville

Interesting Fact(s):    Jackson graduated, from the famous West Point Class, of 1846.  This class would produce many of the best general officers, during the Civil War.  Jackson would participate in the Mexican War, where he would earn two brevets, for bravery, in action.  In 1852 he would resign his commission, to be an instructor at the Virginia Military Institute (VMI).  With the outbreak of hostilities, the governor would activate the Virginia Militia, and Jackson would become a colonel, commanding at Harpers Ferry.  In June, 1861, Jackson would be promoted brigadier general.  At First Manassas, Jackson's brigade would be part of Joseph Johnston's Valley Army, that would reinforce P.G.T. Beauregard - saving the day for the Confederacy.  Here, in defense of Henry Hill, Jackson would earn his nickname, "Stonewall."  His brigade, for the rest of the Civil War, would proudly be the Stonewall Brigade, a fearsome unit of Virginia regiments.  After First Manassas, Jackson would rapidly gain a reputation, as a hard, fast fighter, and would be propelled to celebrity status - south, and north.  In late 1861, Jackson would be sent to protect the Shenandoah Valley.  His 1862 Valley Campaign, would further cement his fearsome reputation.  His division's quick marches through the Shenandoah Valley, would earn his infantry the moniker, "foot cavalry."  His actions in the valley, would neutralize, the larger Union army, under the command of Nathanial Banks, driving them across the Potomac River.  Jackson, not done yet, in the valley, would defeat John Fremont's troops, at Cross Keys, and James Shields at Port Republic.  After clearing the Shenandoah Valley, he pushed east, to join R.E. Lee, to push George B. McClellan's Army of the Potomac, from the peninsula, in a campaign called, The Seven Days.  With growing pressure from the newly constituted, U.S. Army of Virginia, Jackson would once again, detach, and attempt to bring portions of John Pope's army into battle, destroying them piecemeal.  This would start to unfold, at Cedar Mountain, near Culpeper, VA, as his division, under the command of A.P. Hill, would slam into Nathanial Banks corps, of the Army of Virginia.  At this seesaw battle, the Confederates would decimate Banks, before the day was over.  From Cedar Mountain, then Major General Thomas Jackson, would continue to move north, while the rest of R.E. Lee's army pushed from the west, through Thoroughfare Gap, on a collision course with Pope, on the familiar fields near Bull Run Creek.  Jackson's 2nd Corps, constituting the Army of Northern Virginia's left flank, would pound the Army of Virginia, over three days, August 28 - 30, eventually combining with James Longstreet's 1st Corps, to annihilate Pope's army, pushing them back towards Centreville, and Washington DC.  From these fields, around Manassas, Robert E. Lee would start his excursion into Maryland.  Jackson would once again be detached, to take the Federal arsenal at Harpers Ferry.  This was taken in short order, and Jackson quickly brought his Corps, less A.P. Hill's division, to Sharpsburg, MD.  At the battle of Antietam, his corps would be the left flank of the Army of Northern Virginia, and would bear the brunt of Hooker's assault, at the Corn Field, and the fighting in the West Woods.  Jackson would be promoted, to lieutenant general, in October 1862, and would command the right wing of the Army of Northern Virginia, at the Battle of Fredericksburg.  His corps would extend from Lee's Hill, to Prospect Hill, and would not yield any ground.  While not as well known, as James Longstreet's defense, of Marye's Heights, and the Sunken Road, Jackson's leadership, at Fredericksburg, was instrumental in the Confederate fortune there.  Five months later, Jackson's career would reach the stratosphere, and he would become martyr.  Joseph Hooker, the new Union commander, in an effort to flank the Army of Northern Virginia, would move up the Rappahannock River, and cross the fords, to the small crossroads, near the Chancellor tavern.  Caught, off guard, and not fully knowing Hooker's intentions, Lee slowly planned, what would be his most brilliant victory.  On the evening, of May 1, after pulling most of his army, out of Fredericksburg, Lee and Jackson met, at what would be known as their "last meeting."  Here, south of the Chancellor residence, Lee determined to divide his army, and send Jackson's Corps, on a long march, through the dense forest, locally known as the "Wilderness," to a surprise attack on Hooker's, strung out, right flank.  Jackson had his troops in position, during the waning hours of daylight, on May 2.  His assault against Oliver Howard's XI Corps, would roll up the entire right flank of Hooker's Army of the Potomac - an action Hooker never fully recovered from.  While scouting, between the lines, after dark, Jackson would be mortally wounded.  He would die on May 10, not from the amputation of his arm, but from pneumonia, at Guinea Station, VA.  The south would mourn his loss for many generations.  His name still graces many streets, and highways in Virginia.

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