Major General John Sedgwick


General John Sedgwick (son of General John Sedgwick I, who fought with distinction in the War of the Revolution) was one of the top commanders of the Union Army during the Civil War and according to many of his admirers should have been named Commander-in-Chief. A graduate of West Point, a veteran of Indian Wars in the West and campaigns in Mexico, General Sedgwick performed heroic services at Bull Run, Antietam, and Gettysburg, but his troops, unfortunately, took extremely heavy losses. At Antietam, the General himself had two horses shot out from under him and was carried unconscious from the field of battle with three grievous wounds from which he was long in recovering. In the disasterous Chancellorsville Campaign he managed to save most of his troops, whom he led later in forced march to Gettysburg, where his timely arrival and brilliant strategy turned the tide of the Battle. At Spottsylvania, where he was boldly exposing himself to snipers while directing the artillery fire, reassuring the men that confederate sharpshooters could not hit an elephant at that distance, he was shot dead on the spot.