Monday, January 3, 2011

A Career Military Man

Union Brigadier General John Joseph Abercrombie died January 3rd 1877.

John Joseph Abercrombie was born March 4th 1798 in Baltimore, Maryland. He attended the United State Military Academy at West Point, graduating 37th out of class of 40 in 1822. Abercrombie’s military career began in Baton Rouge, Louisiana with garrison duty. In 1828 Abercrombie served in the Black Hawk War and received a promotion to First Lieutenant. He then saw action during the Seminole Wars getting a brevets to Major for service at the Battle of Lake Okeechobee. His next promotion to Lieutenant Colonel came during the Mexican - American War when he was honored after the Battle of Monterrey. After the war Abercrombie was assigned to North Dakota where he over saw the construction of new fort.

The start of the Civil War found Abercrombie aged 63, as one of the oldest commanders in the Union or Confederacy. He was the commanding officer of the 7th Minnesota Infantry with the rank of Colonel. Abercrombie commanded troops in the Shenandoah Valley and at the Battle of Falling Waters. He was promoted to Brigadier General and assigned to the command of the Second Brigade of I Corps’ in the Army of the Potomac. Abercrombie was wounded at the Battle of Seven Pines, and his command repulsed a Confederate attack at the Battle of Malvern Hill. Following the Peninsula Campaign, Abercrombie was relieved of field command and spent the rest of the war handling defenses of Washington DC and supply depots. Abercrombie was placed back in command defending a depot in Fredericksburg, Virginia from Hampton’s Legion in June 1864. He retired from the Army June 12th 1865 at Fort Schuyler, New York with the rank of Brigadier General.

Following his retirement, Abercrombie spent the next three year serving the United States Court-martials duty. He died January 3rd 1877 in Roslyn, Long Island, New York, and is buried in the Woodland Cemetery in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

A good web site for more information is FORT ABERCROMBIE Biography of General John J. Abercrombie

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