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Civil War Soldiers - Chetlain

Chetlain, Augustus L., brigadier-general, U.S. Army, was born in St. Louis, Mo., Dec. 26, 1824. His parents moving to Galena, Ill., he obtained a common school education there, and, at a meeting called in response to President Lincoln's appeal for troops, was the first man to enlist. He was elected captain of a company which afterwards became part of the 12th Ill. regiment, of which he was commissioned, April 26, 1862, lieutenant-colonel. He was in command from Sept., 1861, to Jan., 1862, at Smithland, Ky., then joined his regiment and led it in the Tennessee campaign. He participated in the capture of Forts Henry and Donelson, was promoted colonel, and led his regiment at Shiloh and at the siege of Corinth. After the battle of Corinth, in which he distinguished himself, he was left by Gen. Rosecrans in command of the city, and while in this service recruited the first colored regiment enlisted in the west. He was relieved in May, 1863, was promoted brigadier-general in December of that year and placed in charge of the organization of colored troops in Tennessee and afterwards Kentucky. He was successful in raising a force of 17,000 men, receiving for this work special commendation from Gen. Thomas. He was in command of the post of Memphis from Jan. to Oct., 1865, was then given command of the district of Talladega, Ala., and on Feb. 5, 1866, was mustered out of the service. He was brevetted major-general of volunteers, June 17, 1865. After the war Gen. Chetlain served as collector of internal revenue for Utah and Wyoming, and as U. S. consul-general to Brussels, and then became a banker in Chicago. In 1891 he organized and became president of the Industrial bank of Chicago.

Source: The Union Army: A History of Military Affairs in the Loyal States 1861-1865, Volume 8 Biographical, 1908

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