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Civil War Soldiers - Hawley

Hawley, Joseph R., brigadier-general, U.S. Army, was born in Stewartsville, N. C., Oct. 31, 1826. His parents removed to Connecticut while he was very young. He was graduated at Hamilton college with the degree of A. B. in 1847, studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1850, immediately entered political life as a Free Soil Democrat, and on Feb. 4, 1856, called the first meeting in Connecticut for the organization of the Republican party, which meeting was held in his law office. In that same year he spent three months canvassing the state for Fremont and Dayton, and in 1857 he gave up law for journalism and edited the Hartford "Evening Press," having previously edited the "Charter Oak," which was merged with the "Press." At the outbreak of the Civil war he helped recruit the first company in the 1st Conn. volunteers, was commissioned its 1st lieutenant, and commanded the company at the battle of Bull Run. After the first three months' service he helped recruit the 7th Conn. volunteers, of which he became lieutenant-colonel, and went south with his regiment with the Port Royal expedition, the regiment engaging in the four months' siege of Fort Pulaski and garrisoning the place after its surrender. Having succeeded Col. Alfred H. Terry to the command of the regiment, Col. Hawley led it in the battles of James island and Pocotaligo, and in the Florida expedition, and subsequently commanded the port of Fernandina, Jan., 1863, and made an unsuccessful attempt to capture Charleston. He commanded a brigade on Morris island in the siege of Charleston and at the capture of Fort Wagner, and in Feb., 1864, commanded his brigade in the division of Gen. Truman Seymour in the bloody and disastrous battle of Olustee. In April, 1864, he went to Virginia as commander of a brigade in Terry's division and participated in the battles of Drewry's bluff, Deep run, Darbytown road, and various affairs near Bermuda Hundred and Deep bottom, and subsequently commanded a division in the battle of New Market road and took part in the siege of Petersburg. Having been made brigadier-general in Sept., 1864, he commanded a picked brigade sent to New York in November to keep peace during election, and in Jan., 1865, when Gen. Terry was sent to lead the operations against Fort Fisher, Gen. Hawley succeeded him to the command of the division, and on Gen. Terry's return became his chief of staff. He was military governor of the district of southeastern North Carolina from February to June, 1865, was chief of staff to Gen. Terry in command of the department of Virginia, with headquarters at Richmond, until Oct., 1865, when he returned to Connecticut, was brevetted major-general of volunteers, and on Jan. 15, 1866, was honorably discharged from the service. Gen. Hawley was elected governor of Connecticut in 1866, was defeated for re-election the following year, was president of the Republican national convention in 1868, secretary of the committee on resolutions in 1872, and chairman of the committee on resolutions in 1876. He was elected to Congress to fill a vacancy and served 1872-75, was then defeated for the two succeeding Congresses, but held his seat again 1879-81. He was elected United States senator in 1881 by the unanimous vote of his party, and was re-elected three times, holding that office at the time of his death in 1905. He was president of the U. S. centennial commission, 1873-77. In 1884 Gen. Hawley was candidate for the Republican nomination for president of 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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