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Civil War Soldiers - McArthur

McArthur, John, brigadier-general, U.S. Army, was born in Erskine, Scotland, Nov. 17, 1826. He attended the public schools and worked in his father's blacksmith shop until 1849, when he immigrated to America and, locating in Chicago, Ill., secured employment as a boiler-maker and afterwards established a business of his own. He was captain of the "Highland Guards" attached to the state militia, and in 1861 this company volunteered and became part of the 12th Ill. regiment, of which he became colonel on May 3, 1861. He commanded a brigade under Grant at the assault on Fort Donelson in Feb., 1862, and for his gallantry was promoted brigadier-general on March 21 following. At Shiloh he received a wound in the foot during the first day's fight, but returned to the battle after the wound had been dressed and succeeded to the command of the 2nd division after Gen. William H. L. Wallace was mortally wounded. He commanded a brigade at Corinth, Oct. 3-4, 1862, and the 6th division, 17th army corps, Army of the Tennessee, during the Vicksburg campaign, May 1, 1863, to July 4, 1863. At the battle of Nashville, where he commanded a division under Gen. A. J. Smith, he took a conspicuous part and distinguished himself by gallantry, leading his division in the assault of the salient point in the enemy's line after Gen. Couch had refused the privilege of charging. For this he was brevetted major-general of volunteers, Dec. 15, 1864. He was mustered out of the service, Aug. 24, 1865, and returned to Chicago, where he was president of the board of commissioners of public works during the fire of 1871, and postmaster of the city from 1873-77.

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

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