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Chatham Roberdeau Wheat
Birth: Apr. 9, 1826
Alexandria
Alexandria City
Virginia, USA
Death: Jun. 27, 1862

Civil War Confederate Army Officer. He was born in Alexandria, Virginia, the son of an Episcopal clergyman and member of a distinguished Maryland family. After graduating from the University of Nashville in 1845, he studied law for a year in Memphis, Tennessee, before volunteering for service in the Mexican War. There he earned a captain's commission and, returning to civilian life, he settled in New Orleans, began a legal practice, entered politics, and was elected to the Louisiana legislature. He abandoned a promising career to join filibustering expeditions to Latin America, and by 1860 he was in Italy, fighting with English volunteers in Giuseppe Garibaldi's revolutionary forces. When the Civil War began, he returned to the United States, organized the 1st Louisiana Special Battalion, and was appointed its commander, with the rank of Major. Standing 6 feet four inches tall and weighing 275 pounds, he was an awesome man. Black hair, dark eyes, and a dramatic moustache gave him the appearance of a "mounted Falstaff." One company of the battalion was composed of unsavory characters and former convicts from New Orleans who styled themselves the "Tiger Rifles." The name stuck to the entire battalion, and "Wheat's Tigers" soon left Louisiana for Virginia. The Tigers saw their initial action at First Bull Run. While leading the battalion in a charge, he was shot through both lungs. A surgeon told him that the wound was fatal, but he replied: "I don't feel like dying yet," and recovered. With an imposing presence and absolute fearlessness, only he could maintain discipline in the battalion. In 1862 it served in Brigadier General Richard Taylor's Louisiana brigade, participating in the Shenandoah Valley and Seven Days' Campaigns. In the latter, at Gaines' Mill, on June 27, 1862, he suffered a second wound. This time he could not will life, dying the same day. As his dying request he asked to be buried on the battlefield. Soon after their commander's death, his Tigers were disbanded and the members assigned to other Louisiana commands. The problem of getting to and caring for his son's grave several miles outside of Richmond prompted his father, John Thomas Wheat, to decide on reinterment in Hollywood. (bio by: Ugaalltheway) 
 
Burial:
Hollywood Cemetery
Richmond
Richmond City
Virginia, USA
GPS (lat/lon): 37.53468, -77.45494
 
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: Steve Dunn
Record added: May 11, 2003
Find A Grave Memorial# 7431325
Chatham Roberdeau Wheat
Added by: quebecoise
 
Chatham Roberdeau Wheat
Added by: Ethan F. Bishop
 
Chatham Roberdeau Wheat
Added by: Steve Dunn
 
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