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Civil War Soldiers - Meagher

Meagher, Thomas F., brigadier-general, U.S. Army, was born in Waterford, Ireland, Aug. 3, 1823. He attended the Jesuit college at Clongowes, Kildare, 1832-36, and then Stonyhurst college, near Preston, England, where he remained until 1843 and became one of the leaders of the revolutionary Young Ireland party in 1846. In consequence of his actions and incendiary speeches he was arrested on charge of sedition, in March, 1848, was bailed, but after the passage of the treason felony act was rearrested and sentenced to death. The sentence was subsequently commuted to banishment for life, and he was sent to Van Dieman's island, in 1849, whence he escaped in 1852, and, coming to the United States, studied law. He was admitted to the bar in 1856 and practiced in New York city until the Civil war. In 1861 he organized a company of volunteers and joined the 69th N. Y. regiment under Col. Michael Corcoran. He was acting major of the regiment in the battle of Bull Run and had a horse shot under him; and he then returned to New York and was mustered out of the service with his regiment. In the winter of 1861-62 he recruited the Irish brigade, was elected colonel of the 1st regiment, and on Feb. 3, 1862, was commissioned brigadier-general of volunteers and given command of the brigade. He was present at the battles of Fair Oaks, Gaines' mill, Malvern hill, Frazier's farm, second Bull Run, Antietam, where his horse was shot under him, and Chancellorsville. At Fredericksburg he was wounded in the leg. Gen. Meagher gave up his commission after the battle of Chancellorsville, but was reappointed brigadier-general early in 1864 and commanded the district of Etowah, Ga. In Jan., 1865, he was ordered to Savannah, Ga., where he was mustered out, May 15, 1865. After leaving the service Gen. Meagher was appointed territorial secretary of Montana, and while acting governor in the absence of Gov. Sidney Edgerton he embarked on an expedition to protect the white settlers from the Indians, and was drowned in the Missouri river, by falling off a steamboat, near Fort Benton, Mont., July 1, 1867.

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

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