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Flowers left for Rufus King
Rufus King: Sir, you will be remembered as a newspaper editor, educator, U.S. diplomat, and a Union brigadier general in the American Civil War. You were the grandson of Rufus King, delegate for Massachusetts to the Continental Congress and the Constitutional Convention. After graduation from Columbia College, where your father, Charles King, served as president, you enrolled in the United States Military Academy at West Point. You graduated near the top of your class, and was appointed to the engineer corps in 1833 and resigned your commission in 1836. You were appointed by President Abraham Lincoln as Minister to the Papal States in 1861. On your way to Rome when the Civil War broke out, you took a leave of absence to join the Army. You became appointed a brigadier general of the Wisconsin militia on April 15, 1861, and of U.S. volunteers on May 17, and was given authorization to raise a Wisconsin regiment. You helped organize what came to be known as the famous Iron Brigade, which you commanded briefly. However, before the Iron Brigade saw combat, you were promoted to command of a division (which included the Brigade) in the I Corps of the Army of the Potomac. The Division's first action was in the Second Battle of Bull Run in August 1862, but you had suffered a fit of epilepsy and could not command it and was replaced by Abner Doubleday. In December 1862, you served on the court-martial of Maj. Gen. Fitz John Porter for disobedience and cowardice for his actions at Second Bull Run - which King himself had missed. Your epileptic seizures became more frequent, and you were unable to return to active duty. Finally, in October 1863, you resigned your commission, and took up your ministerial post. You were the father of Rufus King, Jr., of the U.S. Horse Artillery Brigade in the Civil War, and General Charles King of the Philippine-American War. After the Civil War, you were reappointed ambassador to the Vatican for four years. In 1865 you were instrumental in capturing John Surratt, thought to be one of the conspirators in Lincoln's assassination who had escaped to Europe. After returning to the United States in 1867, youworked as a tax collector in New York City, thanks for everything, happy 200th birthday!
 Added: Jan. 26, 2014

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