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Oliver O. Howard

Oliver O. HowardAKA Oliver Otis Howard

Born: 8-Nov-1830
Birthplace: Leeds, ME
Died: 26-Oct-1909
Location of death: Burlington, VT
Cause of death: unspecified
Remains: Buried, Lakeview Cemetery, Burlington, VT

Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: White
Occupation: Military, Educator

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Headed the Freedmen's Bureau

Military service: US Army (1857 Seminole War, 1861-65 Civil War)

American soldier, born in Leeds, Maine, on the 8th of November 1830. He graduated at Bowdoin College in 1850, and at the U.S. Military Academy in 1854. In 1857 he served in Florida against the Seminole Indians, and from 1857 to 1861 he was assistant professor of mathematics at West Point. At the beginning of the Civil War he resigned to become colonel of the 3rd Maine volunteer regiment, and at the first battle of Bull Run was in command of a brigade. In September he was promoted brigadier-general of volunteers. He served in the Peninsular Campaign, and at the battle of Seven Pines (Fair Oaks) he was twice wounded, losing his right arm. On his return to active service in August 1862 he took part in the Virginian campaigns of 1862-63; at Antietam he succeeded Sedgwick in command of a division, and he became major-general of volunteers in March 1863. In the campaign of Chancellorsville he commanded the 11th corps, which was routed by Stonewall Jackson, and in the first days battle at Gettysburg he was for some hours (succeeding Abner Doubleday after Reynolds's death) in command of the Union troops. The 11th corps was transferred to Tennessee after William S. Rosecrans's defeat at Chickamauga, and formed part of Joseph Hooker's command in the great victory of Chattanooga. When William T. Sherman prepared to invade Georgia in the spring of 1864 the 11th corps was merged with the 12th into the new 20th, commanded by Hooker, and Howard was then placed in command of the new 4th corps, which he led in all the actions of the Atlanta campaign, receiving another wound at Pickett's Mills.

On the death in action of General McPherson, Howard, in July 1864, was selected to command the Army of the Tennessee. In this position he took part in the "March to the Sea" and the Carolinas campaign. In March 1865 he was breveted major-general U.S.A. "for gallant and meritorious service in the battle of Ezra Church and during the campaign against Atlanta", and in 1893 received a Congressional medal of honor for bravery at Fair Oaks. After the peace he served as commissioner of the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen and Abandoned Lands from 1865 until 1874; in 1872 he was special commissioner to the hostile Apaches of New Mexico and Arizona; in 1874-81 was in command of the Department of the Columbia and conducted the campaign against Chief Joseph in 1877 and that against the Bannocks and Piutes in 1878. In 1881-82 he was superintendent of West Point; and in 1882-86 he commanded the Department of the Platte, in 1886-88 the Department of the Pacific, and in 1888-94 the Department of the East. In 1886 he was promoted major-general and in 1894 he retired. He died at Burlington, Vermont, on the 26th of October 1909.

Howard was deeply interested in the welfare of the negroes; and the establishment by the U.S. Government in 1867 of Howard University, at Washington, especially for their education, was largely due to him; it was named in his honor, and from 1869 to 1873 he presided over it. In 1895 he founded for the education of the "mountain whites" the Lincoln Memorial University at Cumberland Gap, Tennessee, and became president of its board. He held honorary degrees of various universities, and was a chevalier of the Legion of Honor. He wrote, amongst other works, Donald's Schooldays (1877); a life of Chief Joseph (1881); a life of General Zachary Taylor (1892) in the "Great Commanders" series; Isabella of Castile (1894); Fighting for Humanity (1898); Henry in the War (1898); papers in the "Battles and Leaders" collection on the Atlanta campaign; My Life and Experience among our Hostile Indians (1907); and Autobiography of O. O. Howard (2 vols., New York, 1907).

    University: Bowdoin College (1850)
    University: US Military Academy, West Point (1854)
    Professor: Mathematics, US Military Academy, West Point (1857-61)
    Administrator: President, Howard University (1869-73)
    Administrator: Superintendent, US Military Academy, West Point (1881-82)

    Congressional Medal of Honor 1893
    Shot: Battle twice (Battle of Seven Pines, c. 1-Jun-1862)
    Risk Factors: Amputee



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