Allison Nelson

Allison Nelson

Fulton County, Georgia, USA
Death 7 Oct 1862 (aged 40)
Austin, Lonoke County, Arkansas, USA
Burial Little Rock, Pulaski County, Arkansas, USA
Memorial ID 11038 · View Source
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Civil War Confederate Brigadier General, Ninth Mayor of Atlanta, Georgia. Allison was born in Fulton County, Georgia, to father John B. Nelson, who owned and operated the Nelson Ferry across the Chattahoochee River in DeKalb County, Georgia. When young Allison was three years old, his father was murdered by John W. Davis, and his mother continued to operate the ferry for a living, to keep the family together. Early on in his life, his leadership abilities were clearly demonstrated. When the Mexican War began, Allison organized a volunteer company called the Kennesaw Rangers, serving as captain. Following the Mexican War, Nelson trained as a lawyer and in 1848 was elected to the Georgia legislature, where he served one term. When the unsuccessful insurrection for Cuban independence began, he volunteered to fight in Cuba under rebel General Narciso Lopez, and was made a general in the rebel army. In 1855, Nelson was elected Mayor of Atlanta, Georgia, on the Democratic Party ticket after defeating Ira O. McDaniel, the Know-Nothing Party candidate. Less than five months later, in July of 1856, he resigned the job of mayor in protest after the city council reduced to a token fee of a fine he had levied on two men for destroying city property. During the Kansas border disputes in 1856, he moved to Kansas to support the pro-slavery issue, but shortly after moving there, moved again to Meridian, Texas, where for the next four years, he became involved in Indian affairs while serving under Indian Agent Lawrence Ross. He distinguished himself as an Indian fighter and was personally commissioned a Captain of Militia by Texas Governor Hardin R. Runnels. In 1859, Nelson was elected to the Texas Legislature, and two years later, to the Secession Convention, a move he strongly approved. At the outbreak of the Civil War, Nelson was promoted to colonel and organized the Tenth Texas Infantry Regiment, which saw early service in neighboring Arkansas under General Thomas C. Hindman. On the recommendation of CSA General Theophilus H. Holmes, he was promoted to Brigadier General on September 12, 1862, and assigned the command of the Second Division of General Holmes' army in Arkansas. Less than two weeks later, Nelson fell ill from typhoid fever and died near Austin, Arkansas on October 7, 1862, leaving behind a widow and three children. Holmes, his mentor, would write of his death "he is an irreplaceable loss to me." Camp Nelson, near the town of Austin, Arkansas, was named for him in his honor.

Bio by: Kit and Morgan Benson

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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Added: 15 Jul 2000
  • Find a Grave Memorial 11038
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Allison Nelson (11 Mar 1822–7 Oct 1862), Find a Grave Memorial no. 11038, citing Mount Holly Cemetery, Little Rock, Pulaski County, Arkansas, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .