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Civil War Soldiers - Milroy
|Milroy, Robert H., major-general, U.S.
Army, was born near Salem, Ind., June 11, 1816. He was graduated at
Norwich university, Vt., in 1843, taking degrees in both the classical
and military departments, and in the war with Mexico he served as
captain in the 1st Ind. regiment. He was graduated at the Indiana
university with the degree of LL. B. in 1850, and practiced law until
the Civil war, first at Delphi and then at Rensselaer; was a member of
the Indiana constitutional convention, 1850-51, and in 1851 was
appointed judge of the 8th judicial circuit of Indiana. At the
beginning of the Civil war he issued a call for volunteers and was
commissioned colonel of the 9th Ind. volunteers on April 26, 1871. In
Dec, 1861, he attacked the Confederates in front of Cheat Mountain
pass, and on Feb. 6, 1862, he was given a commission as
brigadier-general to date from Sept. 5, 1861. He assumed command of
the Mountain Department in Jan., 1862, and adopted stringent and
effective measures against the depredations of guerrillas, as the
result of which President Davis secured the passage of a bill through
the Confederate congress offering a reward of $100,000 for the body of
Gen. Milroy, dead or alive. In May, 1862, Gen. Milroy was attacked by
Jackson at McDowell, and he fought there with the aid of Shields, who
assumed command, the battle of McDowell. Gen. Milroy's brigade was
then attached to Sigel's corps, Army of the Potomac, and fought in the
second battle of Bull Run. He was promoted major-general of volunteers
Nov. 29, 1862, and with his division of 8,000 men he occupied
Winchester. Here he was attacked by nearly the whole of Lee's army,
which was marching toward Pennsylvania, and held out for three days
against the superior force, retreating then, by night, with great loss
of men, to Harper's Ferry. Gen. Milroy claimed that by thus holding
Lee in check he enabled Meade to meet him at Gettysburg, when
otherwise the battle would have been fought farther north. However,
his conduct was made the object of official investigation and he was
held in confinement until May 13, 1864, for having evacuated
Winchester without orders from Gen. Schenck, his immediate commander.
After his release he was ordered to Nashville, Tenn., and soon
thereafter fought his last battle against Gens. Forrest and Bates,
defeating their combined forces on the old Murfreesboro battle-ground.
He resigned from the army July 25, 1865. In 1868 he was elected
trustee of the Wabash & Erie canal company. He then held the office of
superintendent of Indian affairs in Washington territory, 1872-75, and
that of Indian agent in Washington territory, 1875-85. Gen. Milroy
died in Olympia, Wash., March 29, 1890.
Source: The Union Army: A History of Military Affairs in the Loyal
States 1861-1865, Volume 8 Biographical, 1908