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J. Mitchell

J. Mitchell

Federal (USA)


John Mitchell

(1833 - 1869)

Home State: New York

Branch of Service: Artillery

Unit: 4th United States Artillery, Battery B

Before Antietam

A 22 year old laborer, he enlisted at Fort Hamilton as a Private in Battery M, 4th United States Artillery on 22 June 1853 and transferred to Battery B, date not given. He reenlisted on 22 April 1858 at Camp Scott, Utah Territory, by then a Sergeant. He was with the Battery at Ruby Valley, UT in July 1860, listed then as a Corporal, and was wounded by a gunshot to his left hip in a fight with Indians on 11 August 1860 at Eagan's (or Egan's) Canyon, UT. He was appointed First Sergeant by September 1862.

On the Campaign

He was cited for bravery at Antietam on 17 September 1862 by battery commander Lieutenant Stewart in his Report, and was injured in his face and right hand by the "premature explosion" of a gun.

The rest of the War

He reenlisted on 22 February 1863 at Belle Plains, VA and was again commended, for his actions on 3 July at Gettysburg when he

took command of the left half battery after Lieutenant Davison was wounded, and showed himself as efficient as an officer during an engagement as I have noticed him to be in his drill and the general routine of the battery.
He was commissioned 2nd Lieutenant on 10 August 1863. He was hurt in an accident, shot in the leg, when his horse fell through a bridge and his pistol went off, near Rappahannock Station, VA on 14 November 1863 and was wounded again, by a gunshot to his right elbow near Boydtown Plank Road, Petersburg, VA on 14 March 1865 and had surgery which fused his radius and ulna bones. He was promoted to First Lieutenant on 13 October 1865.

He was honored by brevets to First Lieutenant on 18 August 1864 (for Weldon Railroad) and to Captain on 29 March 1865 (for operations against Petersburg).

After the War

He continued in Regular Army service and was appointed Captain in the 43rd US Infantry on 28 July 1866 and transferred to the First US Infantry on 8 April 1869 at the consolidation of the 1st and 43rd regiments. He died at Fort Leavenworth, KS on 13 November 1869, probably from the lingering effects of his several wounds.

References & notes

Service information from the ORs1, Heitman,2 the Registers,3 and Buell,4 source also of his picture - an etching from a photograph. The Gettysburg citation is from Colonel C.S. Wainwright, Chief of the First Corps Artillery. His death place found in US Army General Order No. 8 of 24 January 1870. Some details from the US Census of 1860. His gravesite is on Findagrave.

He married Lizzie M Lee (1843-1886) in November 1855 in Washington, DC.

More on the Web

See more about the circumstances of his death in a Congressional Report of May 1882 in support of a pension for his widow Lizzie, the source of information about his previous wounds.


02/14/1833; County Wexford, IRELAND


11/13/1869; Ft. Leavenworth, KS; burial in Graceland Cemetery, Chicago, IL


1   US War Department, The War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies (OR), 128 vols., Washington DC: US Government Printing Office, 1880-1901, Series 1, Vol 19, Part 1 (Serial 27), pp. 229-31; S 1, V 27, Pt 1 (Ser 43), pp. 358-9  [AotW citation 10486]

2   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, pp. 716 - 717  [AotW citation 10496]

3   US Army, Registers of Enlistments in the United States Army, 1798-1914, Washington, DC: National Archives, 1956, Vol. 049, pg. 275; Vol. 053, pg. 144  [AotW citation 27452]

4   Buell, Augustus, The Cannoneer: Recollections of Service in the Army of the Potomac, Washington: The National Tribune Company, 1890, frontpiece  [AotW citation 10497]