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W. MacRae

W. MacRae

Confederate (CSA)

Lieutenant Colonel

William MacRae

(1834 - 1882)

Home State: North Carolina

Command Billet: Commanding Regiment

Branch of Service: Infantry

Unit: 15th North Carolina Infantry


see his Battle Report

Before Sharpsburg

He was educated a civil engineer, and was occupied at Monroe when the War began. He enlisted as a private in the Monroe Light Infantry, and was elected Captain on 1 May 1861 when it became Company B, Fifteenth NC Infantry. He was elected Lieutenant Colonel in the reorganization on 2 May 18621.

On the Campaign

He was in command of the regiment in Maryland on the absence of Colonel Dowd, who had been wounded at Malvern Hill on 1 July 18622. He led the Regiment on South Mountain, and was in command of the Brigade briefly at Sharpsburg in General Cobb's absence after Lieutenant-Colonel Sanders (then senior), Twenty-fourth Georgia, had retired from the field.

The rest of the War

At Fredericksburg he fought with his regiment at Marye's hill. Immediately after this battle the Fifteenth was transferred to J. R. Cooke's North Carolina brigade, with which he served until after the Pennsylvania campaign. He was promoted Colonel 27 February 1863 on Colonel Dowd's resignation. He was promoted Brigadier General in mid-1864 (later confirmed, date of rank was 4 Nov 18642) and commanded Kirkland's Brigade. At Reams' Station, August 25, 1864, his brigade drove Hancock's Corps from its intrenchments, and captured a Federal battery. He was with the army to the end at Appomattox,

After the War

After the War he was general superintendent of the Wilmington & Manchester railroad, later of the Macon & Brunswick, and finally of the State road of Georgia, now known as the Western & Atlantic.

References & notes

Much of the material above is quoted from a biography posted on the North Carolina Civil War Home Page (gone as of 9/2009) - but also found in Ezra Warner's Generals in Gray (1989). The photograph above is from Clark's Histories, facing page 733 in Volume 1.


9/9/1834; Wilmington, NC


2/11/1882; Augusta, GA; burial in Oakdale Cemetery, Wilmington, NC


1   Moore, John Wheeler (compiler), and State of North Carolina, Roster of North Carolina Troops in the War Between the States, 4 volumes, Raleigh: Ashe & Gatling, State Printers and Publishers, 1882, Vol. 1, pp. 545, 551  [AotW citation 1026]

1   Clark, Walter, editor, Histories of the Several Regiments and Battalions from North Carolina in the Great War, 1861-1865, 5 vols., Raleigh and Goldsboro (NC): E. M. Uzzell, Nash Brothers, printers, 1901, Vol. 1, pp. xii, 733  [AotW citation 1027]