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Civil War Soldiers - Williams

Williams, Alpheus S., brigadier-general, U.S. Army, was born in Saybrook, Conn., in 1810. He graduated at Yale college in 1831; began the practice of law in Detroit, Mich.; was judge of probate from 1840 to 1844; from 1843 to 1847 was owner and editor of the Detroit "Daily Advertiser;" also served as recorder of Detroit, and in 1849 was appointed postmaster of that city by President Taylor. He was a lieutenant-colonel in the Mexican war and on the breaking out of the Civil war he became a major-general of militia, afterward becoming a brigadier-general of volunteers in the army. He served on the upper Potomac and had command of a division at Winchester. He succeeded Gen. Banks as a corps commander and after Gen. Mansfield was wounded commanded the 12th corps at Antietam. He took part in the battles of Chancellorsville and Gettysburg and accompanied Sherman's army in the "march to the sea," during which he was made brevet major-general of volunteers. He was minister resident in San Salvador from 1866 to 1869, was elected to Congress from Michigan in 1874 and was reelected in 1876. Gen. Williams died in Washington, D. C., Dec. 1, 1878.

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

Williams, David H., brigadier-general, U.S. Army, was born in the state of Pennsylvania. On July 23, 1861, he was commissioned colonel of the 82nd Pa. infantry (known as the 31st until after the battle of Fair Oaks), which was recruited largely from the city of Philadelphia, but the regimental organization was effected in Washington, D. C. It was assigned to the 1st brigade, 1st division, 4th corps, and occupied the defenses of Washington for about six months, engaged in drill, guard and fatigue duty. On March 9, 1862, it advanced with the army to Manassas, returned again after a few days to its old quarters, and two weeks later proceeded to Fortress Monroe, whence it moved upon McClellan's Peninsular campaign. After being detained for a month at Yorktown, Col. Williams crossed the Chickahominy with his regiment May 22 and on the 31st engaged the enemy at Fair Oaks, displaying commendable coolness and bravery. During the retreat to Harrison's landing he was engaged at Charles City cross-roads and Malvern hill, his regiment suffering severely in the latter battle. He was in line but not active at Chantilly and was only slightly engaged at Antietam. On Nov. 29, 1862, he was commissioned brigadier-general of volunteers and served as such until March 4, 1863, when, his commission having expired by limitation, he left the service and returned to the pursuits of civil life.

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

Williams, Seth, brigadier-general, U.S. Army, was born in Augusta, Me., March 22, 1822. He was appointed a cadet to the military academy at West Point in 1838, graduated in 1842 and received the appointment of brevet second lieutenant of artillery. During this initiatory period of his military career he showed those qualities of careful performance of duty by which he was distinguished and well known throughout the service, and he gained an honorable position in a class remarkable for its talent. In the ordinary routine of promotion he became first lieutenant of artillery in 1847, went with the army into Mexico, where he received the appointment of aide-de-camp to Maj.- Gen. Patterson and won the brevet of captain for gallant and meritorious conduct in the battle of Cerro Gordo. In Sept., 1850, Capt. Williams was appointed adjutant of the military academy and served in that capacity until Sept., 1853, having received in Aug., 1853, the appointment of assistant adjutant-general with the brevet rank of captain in the adjutant-general's department. In 1861 he was appointed major in the same corps, and in Sept., 1861, brigadier-general of volunteers. In this last capacity he served as adjutant-general of the Army of the Potomac under its different commanders until the close of the war, when he was relieved, and after serving upon several army boards, was appointed adjutant-general of the department under Gen. Meade's command. In 1864 Gen. Williams was transferred to the staff of Gen. Grant as acting inspector-general of the armies of the United States, and the same year he was made major-general of volunteers by brevet. He held the full rank of lieutenant-colonel in the regular army, but was brevetted colonel and brigadier-general "for gallant and meritorious services during the war." Gen. Williams died of inflammation of the brain in Boston, Mass., March 23, 1866.


Williams, Thomas, brigadier-general, U.S. Army, was born in New York in 1815. He was taken in youth to Michigan, was graduated at West Point in 1837, served for two years in Florida, taught mathematics at West Point, and was on the staff of Gen. Scott 1844-50. In the Mexican war he was brevetted captain and major for gallantry at Contreras and Chapultepec. He was commissioned captain in Sept., 1850, served in various garrisons, again in Florida, 1856-57, in Utah in 1858, became major and inspector-general of the Department of Virginia in May, 1861, and in September brigadier-general of volunteers. He had command of Fort Hatteras till the spring of 1862; then went south with Gen. Butler; led a brigade in the Ship Island expedition; helped to open the lower Mississippi; led the land forces in the first attempt on Vicksburg; and cut the canal that was meant to supply a new channel for the river. After this he was sent to Baton Rouge, La., which he held against a Confederate attack under Gen. Breckinridge, and was killed while leading the charge which won the day, Aug. 5, 1862.

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

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