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J. M. S. Comly

J. M. S. Comly

Federal (USA)


James Monroe Stewart Comly

(1832 - 1887)

Home State: Ohio

Command Billet: Regimental Officer

Branch of Service: Infantry

Unit: 23rd Ohio Infantry


see his Battle Report

Before Antietam

He trained as a printer, and was eventually editor and proprietor of the Ohio State Journal, in Columbus, Ohio. In December 1861 he was appointed to fill the vacancy for Major of the 23rd Ohio; described by then-Lieutenant Russell Hastings:

"The vacancy of the majority was filled by Governor Dennison sending from Ohio an editor named James M. Comly. We didn't like this act of the Governor, for the promotion of one of our Captains to be Major would have given us each a step and would have been regular. Poor Major Comly was not received with open arms. We were not rude to him but he must have seen and felt that he was outside of our "hail fellow well met" circle."

On the Campaign

He succeeded to the command of the regiment after LCol Hayes was wounded at South Mountain on September 14th.

After the War

He was Postmaster of Columbus, and U.S. Minister to the Hawaiian Islands, 1877-82. In 1883 he went to Toledo, and owned and edited the Toledo Commercial there.

References & notes

See a story he told after the war about a musician in his unit at South Mountain, online from Ohio in the Civil War; and see also Lt Russell Hastings memoir, transcribed online by the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center.


3/6/1832; New Lexington, OH


7/26/1887; Toledo, OH