Wednesday, June 29, 2011
A Confederate Yankee
Richard Griffith was born January 11th 1814 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He attended Ohio University in Athens, Ohio, and after graduating he moved to Vicksburg, Mississippi. Griffith served with the 1st Mississippi Rifles during the Mexican-American War, and it was then that he became friends with Jefferson Davis. Following the Mexican-American War he became a United States Marshal, and continued to be a member of the Mississippi state militia where he attained the rank of Brigadier General.
At the beginning of the Civil War Griffith became the Colonel of the 12th Mississippi Infantry. He received a promotion to Brigadier General in November 1861, and took command of a Mississippi brigade, a part Confederate Major General John B Magruder’s division in early 1862. It was during a part of the Seven Days Battles on June 29th 1862 that Griffith was mortally wounded. His men were chasing retreating Union soldiers on the Nine Mile road when they ran into some of Major General Edwin Vose Summer’s Union II Corps. Sumner’s men were guarding the Union retreat near Savage’s Station. Griffith was wounded in the thigh during artillery fire by a shell fragment. It is reported that upon being told that his wound was fatal, Griffith said, "If only I could have led my brigade through this battle, I would have died satisfied."
Griffith was moved to Richmond, Virginia where he died of his wounds June 29th 1862. He is buried in the Greenwood Cemetery in Jackson, Mississippi.