site logo
[no picture yet]

[no picture yet]

Federal (USV)


Gabriel Campbell

(1838 - 1923)

Home State: Michigan

Education: Michigan State Normal School (1861), University of Michigan, Class of 1865

Branch of Service: Infantry

Unit: 17th Michigan Infantry

Before Antietam

He came to America with his family at about age 4 in 1842, and was living in Augusta, Washtenaw County, MI by 1850. He graduated from the Normal School (now Eastern Michigan University) in Ypsilanti in 1861 and entered the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor later that year. He mustered as the Captain of Company E, 17th Michigan Infantry at their organization on 19 August 1862 in Detroit. His commission was dated from 17 June 1862. Known as the "Normal Company", most of the men were from the Normal School or the University.

On the Campaign

He led his Company in action at Fox's Gap on South Mountain on 14 September and at Antietam on 17 September 1862.

The rest of the War

He was discharged for disability on 19 September 1863.

After the War

He returned to the University and graduated in 1865, then attended the Chicago Theological Seminary from which he received a divinity degree in 1868. He was appointed professor of "mental and moral philosophy" at the University of Minnesota and lived in St. Anthony, Hennepin County, MN. He was also ordained in the Congregational Church in 1868.

He studied philosophy at the University of Berlin in 1870-71. In 1880 he was offered the Presidency of the University of Michigan, but declined. He next taught at Bowdoin College (1881-83) and then took a position as professor at Dartmouth College. He was head of the Philosophy Department there by 1892 and retired in 1910.

References & notes

His service from Record of Service.1 Personal details from family genealogists and the US Census of 1850 - 1920, a sketch in Chapman's History of Washtenaw County (Vol. 2, 1881), and his memorial in The Michigan Alumnus of 3 January 1924. His gravesite is on Findagrave. Thanks to Jim Smith for the pointer to Campbell and his experience on South Mountain.

He married Louise Theodora McMahon (1844-1927) in September 1865 and they had 6 children.

More on the Web

He published War Pictures: A Poem, which he had delivered at Class Day 1865 at the University of Michigan. It's online from the Hathi Trust.

He visited Fox's Gap again in 1892, and wrote to Ezra Carman in 1899 about the 17th Michigan's actions there. That letter was transcribed online by Tim Ware, on his Mountain Aflame blog in 2011.


08/19/1838; Dalrymple, Ayrshire, SCOTLAND


10/19/1923; Hanover, NH; burial in Dartmouth College Cemetery, Hanover, NH


1   State of Michigan, Office of the Adjutant General, and George H. Brown, Adjutant General; George H. Turner, Asst. AG, compiler, Record of Service of Michigan Volunteers in the Civil War, 1861-1865, 46 volumes, Kalamazoo: Ihling Bros. & Everard, 1904-1915, Vol. 17, pg. 17  [AotW citation 24059]