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Civil War Soldiers - Benton
|Benton, William P., brigadier-general, U.S. Army, was
born near Newmarket, Frederick county, Md., Dec. 25, 1828. His father
dying when he was but four months old, he was taken by his mother to
Indiana in 1836. At the beginning of the Mexican war, when only
eighteen years old, he enlisted for the Mexican war as a private in a
regiment of mounted riflemen, and fought at Contreras, Churubusco,
Chapultepec, and the capture of the City of Mexico. Returning after
the war to Richmond, Ind., he was admitted to the bar in 1851, was
appointed prosecuting attorney in 1852, and in 1856 was made judge of
the common pleas court. Judge Benton was the first man in Wayne county
to respond to the president's call for troops, and his company, which
he gathered in twenty-four hours, was the first in Indiana to be
mustered into the service. He was promoted colonel of the 8th Indiana,
had command at Rich mountain and distinguished himself there by
personal bravery. Upon the expiration of the first three months he
re-enlisted and re-organized the regiment, and reported to Gen.
Fremont in Sept., 1861. The regiment, placed in the vanguard of
Fremont's army, served in the campaign in Missouri and Kansas. Col.
Benton commanded a brigade at Pea ridge, and for gallantry in that
battle was promoted to brigadier-general. He took part in the battles
of Port Gibson, Jackson, Champion's hill, Black River bridge, the
sieges of Vicksburg and Mobile, and was injured at Jackson, Miss. On
March 25, 1865, he was brevetted major-general of volunteers, and
resigned the following July. While in New Orleans, under appointment
from the government, he died in 1867.
Source: The Union Army: A History of Military Affairs in the Loyal
States 1861-1865, Volume 8 Biographical, 1908