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 Absalom Baird

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Absalom Baird

  • Birth 20 Aug 1824 Washington, Washington County, Pennsylvania, USA
  • Death 14 Jun 1905 Relay, Baltimore County, Maryland, USA
  • Burial Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA
  • Plot Section 1, Site 55
  • Memorial ID 12848

Civil War Union Brigadier General, Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient. A descendant of officers who fought in the French and Indian and Revolutionary Wars, he graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York in 1849, placing 9th out of 43 (his classmates included future Union Generals Quincy Gillmore, John G. Parke and Rufus Saxton as well as future Confederate Generals Seth Barton, Charles Field and Johnson K. Duncan). His Army career before the Civil War took him to Florida in the ongoing conflict with the Seminole Indians, to Texas against the Indians, and as a West Point Instructor. When the Civil War broke out, he was assigned to the staff of Brigadier General Daniel Tyler, and served as Tyler’s divisional adjutant during the First Bull Run Campaign. During the 1862 Peninsular Campaign he served as IV Corps commander General Erasmus Keyes’ Inspector General and Chief of Staff. In April 1863 he was promoted to Brigadier General, US Volunteers, and was given command of a division in the Army of the Tennessee under Generals Rosecrans, Thomas and eventually, William T. Sherman. As division commander he was bold, competent and no-nonsense, and was repeatedly commended by his superiors. At the Federal disaster at the Battle of Chickamauga in September 1863, his tenacious defense at Horseshoe Ridge helped save the Union Army. During the Summer 1864 Atlanta Campaign, he forced Confederate General Joseph Johnston out of Dalton, Georgia, and led a charge at the September 1, 1864 Battle of Jonesboro that would see him be awarded the CMOH 32 years later. He led his division in the March to the Sea, and through the Carolinas Campaign that ended in the Confederate capitulation. Despite repeated recommendations for his promotion, he remained a Brigadier General, but did receive brevet promotions to Major General in both the Volunteer Service and Regular Army. Upon his muster out of the Volunteers in 1866 he resumed his career in the Inspector General’s Department, and would serve until his retirement in 1888, having been appointed Brigadier General and Inspector General of the United States Army. His Medal of Honor citation reads “Voluntarily led a detached brigade in an assault upon the enemy's works”. His Medal was issued on April 22, 1896.

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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 9 Oct 2000
  • Find A Grave Memorial 12848
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Absalom Baird (20 Aug 1824–14 Jun 1905), Find A Grave Memorial no. 12848, citing Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .