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Federal (USA)

Brigadier General

Daniel Phineas Woodbury

(1812 - 1864)

Home State: New Hampshire

Education: US Military Academy, West Point, NY

Command Billet: Brigade Commander

Branch of Service: Engineers

Unit: Volunteer Engineer Brigade, Army of the Potomac

Before Antietam

"On September 23, 1847, topographical engineer Lt. Daniel P. Woodbury left Fort Kearny at Table Creek with about seventy men, under orders to select a site for a military post (later new Ft. Kearny, NE) at a suitable location along the Platte River ..."

And in 1849 ... "it now becomes necessary to establish the second station, as directed by the Secretary of War, June 1, 1847, at or near Fort Laramie, a trading station belonging to the American Fur Company."

"You are desired to authorize Lieut. Woodbury of the Corps of Engineers to purchase the buildings of Fort Laramie[from the Fur Co], the second station, should he deem it necessary to to so." He did so deem, and the USA took posession in June 1849. (See a picture of him as a young Lieutenant)

On the Campaign

In command of the Volunteer Engineer Brigade of the General Headquarters, Army of the Potomac. He and his brigade were detailed to Washington DC September 7, 1862 for the duration of the Maryland Campaign.

The rest of the War

He was breveted Major General for gallant and meritorious services at Bull Run and Fredericksburg. He was responsible for pontoon bridge construction leading to the assault(s) at Fredericksburg. See his Fredericksburg Report for details, and a reference to the flap about the delays in pontoon arrival.

After Fredericksburg he served as commander of Army forces in West and Southern Florida, based at Key West, and died there of Yellow Fever in August 1864.

More on the Web

See tales of Kearny from the Buffalo County Historical Society and Laramie from the Park Service.

See more about the 50th NY Engineers, and the Engineer Briagade in a collection of letters from the US Army Corps of Engineers.

Civil War Interactive has a nice piece about the Navy and yellow fever in at Key West in 1864, with mention of Gen Woodbury's death.


12/16/1812; New London (?), NH


8/15/1864; Key West, FL