Thomas Howard Ruger


Thomas Howard Ruger Famous memorial

Lima, Livingston County, New York, USA
Death 3 Jun 1907 (aged 74)
Stamford, Fairfield County, Connecticut, USA
Burial West Point, Orange County, New York, USA
Plot Section 26, Row C, Grave 29
Memorial ID 4906 View Source

Civil War Union Major General. The son of an Episcopal minister, he was born in Lima, New York, and at the age of 13, he and his family moved to Janesville, Wisconsin. Entering West Point in 1850, he would graduate 3rd in the class of 1854, however only nine months later he would resign from the Corps of Engineers and returned to Janesville, where he opened his own law office. On June 29, 1861, he reentered the army as executive officer of a volunteer infantry regiment, the 3rd Wisconsin. On September 1st he became the outfit's Colonel. By then he was serving under Major General Nathaniel P. Banks in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley, where early in 1862 the Federals waged a frustrating campaign against Major General Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson's Foot Cavalry. He suffered through Major General John Pope's Second Bull Run Campaign, serving conspicuously at Cedar Mountain on August 9, 1862. At Antietam, he led the 3rd Brigade/1st Division/XII Corps/Army of the Potomac, taking a wound while fighting near the West Woods. Once he was back on his feet, he was given a Brigadier General's star and led his brigade at Chancellorsville. There he labored to stem the rout of the XII Corps following Jackson's flank offensive of May 2, 1863. His efforts on this field and others so impressed his immediate superior, Brigadier General Alpheus S. Williams, that at Gettysburg although not his senior subordinate, Williams gave his division to him, when Williams moved up to corps command. (Henry W. Slocum commanded the army's right wing) On July 2, 1863, he justified such faith by his judicious placement of troops along Culp's Hill, ensuring that the next day's attack on the far Federal right would fail. For this action in 1867, he would receive a brevet to Brigadier General in the regular army. After Gettysburg, he was sent to New York City to help bring order to the Draft Riots. That October his troops were transferred West, where he led his brigade in guarding the supply lines during the Battle of Chattanooga. The division received this duty because Slocum refused to fight under Joe Hooker, and the corps sent only one division into the fight so that Slocum could have his way. He retained brigade command in the merger of the 11th and 12th Corps the following spring. In 1864 he participated in Major General William T. Sherman's Georgia Campaign as a brigade and later a division commander. Accompanying Major General George H. Thomas to Tennessee that fall, he fought gallantly at the battle of Franklin in command of a XXIII Corps division. He was brevetted Major General of Volunteers for his heroics. He was disabled by sickness and missed the Battle of Nashville being replaced by Major General D. N. Couch. With most of the XXIII Corps he was transferred to the North Carolina coast where he served under Major General John M. Schofield, notably at Kinston and during the occupation of Wilmington. He also was able to join Sherman for the surrender of Joe Johnston's army. He continued on duty until being mustered out on September 1, 1866. He became Colonel of the 33rd and later the 18th United States Infantry, these being two of the newly created regular army infantry regiments after the war. He would rise to the rank of Major General and serve as Superintendent of West Point from 1871 to 1876. From 1876 to 1878 he served as commander of the Department of the South. Transferred to the frontier, he served as commander of the District of Montana from 1878 to 1885. Here his two biggest responsibilities were fighting Indians and protecting the railway system to the West Coast. He would retired in 1897.

Bio by: Ugaalltheway


1871 - 1876

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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Added: 20 Mar 1999
  • Find a Grave Memorial ID: 4906
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Thomas Howard Ruger (2 Apr 1833–3 Jun 1907), Find a Grave Memorial ID 4906, citing United States Military Academy Post Cemetery, West Point, Orange County, New York, USA ; Maintained by Find a Grave .