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Civil War Soldiers - Edwards

Edwards, John, brigadier-general, U.S. Army, was born in Jefferson county, Ky., Oct. 24, 1815. He received a common school education, studied law, and entered upon the practice of his profession in Indiana, becoming a representative in the state legislature, 1845-49. In 1849 he removed to California and was at once made an alcalde, and then, returning to Indiana in 1852, he served in the state senate. Subsequently he moved to Iowa, was a member of the state constitutional convention there in 1855, and a representative in the state legislature in 1856-60, being speaker of the house, 1859 and 1860. He was appointed member of Gov. Kirkwood's staff in 1861, and in May, 1862, organized the 18th Iowa volunteers, became colonel of the regiment, and led it to the front. He was promoted brigadier-general of volunteers, Sept. 24, 1864, and served in this capacity until mustered out of the service, Jan. 15, 1866. After the war he settled at Fort Smith, Ark., and was appointed United States assessor, Aug. 6, 1866. He was elected by the Republicans a member of the 42nd Congress, but his seat was successfully contested by Thomas Boles, the Democratic candidate, who took his seat, Feb. 9, 1872. Gen. Edwards died April 8, 1894.

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

Edwards, Oliver, brigadier-general, U.S. Army, was born in Springfield, Mass., Jan. 30, 1835. At the beginning of the Civil war he was commissioned 1st lieutenant and adjutant of the 10th Mass. regiment, and in Jan., 1862, he was appointed senior aide-de-camp on the staff of Gen. Darius N. Couch. He was commissioned major of the 37th Mass. regiment, Aug. 9, 1862, was promoted colonel soon afterward; was brevetted brigadier-general of volunteers, Oct. 19, 1864, "for gallant and distinguished services at the battle of Spottsylvania Court House, and for meritorious services at the battle of the Opequan;" was given the brevet rank of major-general of volunteers, April 5, 1865, for "conspicuous gallantry in the battle of Sailor's creek, Va.," and on May 19, 1865, was given the full rank of brigadier-general of volunteers. After serving through the Peninsular campaign of 1862, and the Fredericksburg and Gettysburg campaigns, Gen. Edwards was ordered to New York city to quell the draft riots of July, 1863, and was placed in command of Forts Hamilton and Lafayette. Returning then to the Army of the Potomac, he took part in the battle of Rappahannock, and then distinguished himself at the battle of the Wilderness, when, on the second day, he made a charge at the head of the 37th Mass. regiment and succeeded in breaking through the Confederate lines; and at Spottsylvania, May 12, 1864, when he held the "bloody angle" during twenty-four hours of continuous fighting. He subsequently participated in all the battles of the overland campaign, and accompanied the 6th corps when sent to the defense of Washington against the advance of Early. He was afterwards in Sheridan's campaign in the Shenandoah valley, took part in the battle of Winchester and was placed in command of that city by Gen. Sheridan. He distinguished himself at the final assault on Petersburg, when his brigade captured the guns in front of three of the enemy's brigades, and he received the surrender of the city, April 3, 1865. At Sailor's creek, on April 6, with the 3d brigade of the 1st division, he captured Gen. Custis Lee and staff with his entire brigade, Lieut.-Gen. Ewell and staff, and many others. Gen. Edwards was mustered out of the army in Jan., 1866, and after the war engaged in mercantile pursuits both in England and the United States.

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

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