|If this website has been useful to you, please consider
making a Donation.
Your support will help keep this website free for everyone, and will allow us to do
more research. Thank you for your support!
Civil War Soldiers - McDowell
|McDowell, Irvin, major-general, U.S.
Army, was born in Ohio, Oct. 18, 1818, received his early education at
the College of Troves in France, and was graduated at West Point in
1838, becoming second lieutenant in the 1st artillery. He was recalled
to the military academy in 1841, and served four years, first as
assistant instructor in infantry tactics, and afterward as adjutant.
On the outbreak of the Mexican trouble he was appointed aide-de-camp
to Gen. John E. Wool, and took a creditable part at the battle of
Buena Vista in 1847, which earned for him the brevet of captain. He
continued with the army of occupation for a while, and was then made
assistant adjutant-general in the war department serving in
Washington, New York, and elsewhere, and attaining the rank of major
on March 31, 1856. After the Civil war was declared he occupied
himself in organizing volunteer companies at the capital until he was
made brigadier-general, May 14, 1861, and assigned to the command of
the Department of northeastern Virginia. On May 29 he was transferred
to the Army of the Potomac, and in such command fought the
well-planned but unsuccessful battle of the first Bull Run. On March
14, 1862, he was made major-general of volunteers, and took part in
the engagements of Cedar mountain, Rappahannock Station, and the
second battle of Manassas, but ill fortune continued to follow him and
he was retired from active duty on the field, Sept. 6, 1862. On July
1, 1864, he was assigned to the command of the Department of the
Pacific, and on July 27, 1865, he was transferred to the Department of
California, holding the latter office until March 31, 1868. Meanwhile
he was mustered out of the volunteer service and received the brevet
of major-general, U. S. A., Sept. 1, 1866. In July, 1868, he was
assigned to the Department of the East, and on Nov. 25, 1872, he was
promoted major-general. After this he had command of the division of
the South until June 30, 1876, and again of the Department of the
Pacific until his retirement, Oct. 15, 1882. Gen. McDowell died in San
Francisco, May 4, 1885.
Source: The Union Army: A History of Military Affairs in the Loyal
States 1861-1865, Volume 8 Biographical, 1908