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Federal (USA)


John Scroggs Poland

(1836 - 1898)

Home State: Indiana

Education: US Military Academy, West Point, NY, Class of 1860;Class Rank: 34

Command Billet: Commanding Battalion

Branch of Service: Infantry

Unit: 2nd and 10th United States Infantry


see his Battle Report

Before Antietam

Following graduation from West Point, he was appointed 2nd Lieutenant, 2nd US Infantry 6 May 1861, and 1st Lieutenant 6 June. He served as Regimental Quartermaster 10 Aug 1861 to 27 June 1862.

On the Campaign

He was in command of a combined Battalion with Companies from his own 2nd and the 10th US Infantry.

The rest of the War

Sometime after September 1862 he was promoted to Captain, to date officially from 27 June 1862. He served with the AOP until after the battle of Gettysburg, when he was on duty in the defences of Washington.

After the War

Citations: Brevetted Major 13 Dec 1862 for gallant and meritorious service in the battles of Antietam and Shepardstown Ford, Md, and Fredericksburg, Va; and Lt Col 3 May 1863 for the battle of Chancellorsville, Va.

In 1865 he continued in US Army service, assigned to the United States Military Academy, where he remained for four years as assistant professor of geography, history, ethics, and drawing. During the ten years that followed he served principally on frontier duty, becoming, on 15 December 1880, major of the 18th Infantry.

From 1881 to 1886 he was chief of the department of law at the US Infantry and Cavalry School in Leavenworth, Kansas. On 1 March 1886 he was promoted Lieutenant Colonel of the 21st Infantry, to Colonel of the 17th Infantry on 1 Aug 1891, and Brigadier General of Volunteers 4 May 1898 during Spanish-American War service.

He published Digest of the Military Laws of the United States from 1861 to 1868 (Boston, 1868) and The Conventions of Geneva of 1864 and 1868, and St. Petersburg International Commission (Leavenworth, 1886).

References & notes

Sources: Heitman1, Appleton's2, and Cullum3. His gravesite is on Findagrave.


10/4/1836; Princeton, IN


08/08/1898; Asheville, NC; burial in River Bend Cemetery, Westerly, RI


1   Heitman, Francis Bernard, Historical Register and Dictionary of the United States Army 1789-1903, 2 volumes, Washington DC: US Government Printing Office, 1903, pg. 796  [AotW citation 363]

2   Fiske, John, and James Grant Wilson, editors, Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, 6 vols., New York City: D. Appleton and Company, 1887-1889  [AotW citation 364]

3   Cullum, George Washington, Biographical Register of the Officers and Graduates of the US Military Academy, 2nd Edition, 3 vols., New York: D. Van Nostrand, 1868-79, Vol. 4  [AotW citation 884]