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Federal (USA)

Assistant Surgeon

John Winfield Williams

(1839 - 1889)

Home State: District Of Columbia

Branch of Service: Medical

Unit: Army of the Potomac

Before Antietam

He was appointed Assistant Surgeon, US Army on 11 July 1862. He was assigned to hospitals in Washington, DC to September 1862.

On the Campaign

He was on temporary duty at an Antietam field hospital to October 1862.

The rest of the War

He was in charge of Trinity General Hospital in Washington into November then assigned to the Reserve Artillery, Army of the Potomac to January 1863. He was with the First US Cavalry to August 1864 and afterward Chief Surgeon of the First Cavalry Division. He was honored by brevets to Captain, USA for action at Berryville, VA in 1863, and to Major for his war service.

After the War

He continued in the Regular Army as a post surgeon in Baltimore, MD to May 1866, then in charge of hospitals in Hilton Head, SC to January 1868. He was later at Atlanta and posts in the West. He was Chief medical officer on General A.H. Terry's staff in the Department of Dakota during the 1876 campaign and was in charge of triage and evacuation of Little Big Horn casualties. He was promoted to Major and Surgeon on 8 November 1877. He died of a brain disease at Jackson Barracks, LA at age 50.

References & notes

His service from Heitman1 and Henry.2 Personal details from family genealogists. His gravesite is on Findagrave.

He probably married before 1869 and had a son, Thomas (1869-1968). He married again in Chalmette, LA in about October 1887.


1839; Washington, DC


04/15/1889; Chalmette, LA; burial in Chalmette National Cemetery, Chalmette, LA


1   Heitman, Francis Bernard, Historical Register and Dictionary of the United States Army 1789-1903, 2 volumes, Washington DC: US Government Printing Office, 1903, Vol. 1, pg. 1041  [AotW citation 28652]

2   Henry, Guy Vernor, Military Record of Civilian Appointments in the United States Army, 2 Volumes, New York: D. Van Nostrand, 1873, Vol. 1, pg. 125  [AotW citation 28653]