Civil War Union Brigadier General. A Customs officer appointed by President Abraham Lincoln prior to the war, White raised the 37th Illinois Volunteer Infantry at the start of the conflict, and was commissioned Colonel and commander on September 18, 1861. He was assigned command of the 2nd Brigade, 3rd Division of the Army of the Southwest and led his troops at the Battle of Pea Ridge, where he was injured. His actions at Pea Ridge led to his promotion to Brigadier General of US Volunteers and stationed at Winchester, Virginia, and then to Harper's Ferry. At Harper's Ferry, he volunteered to serve under Colonel Dixon Miles in deference to Miles' 40 years army experience. Miles' defeat and surrender at Harper's Ferry prompted a military investigation that acquitted General White's actions in battle. White was subsequently assigned to the command of the Eastern District of Kentucky and later to Major General Abrose E. Burnside in the expedition into East Tennessee. Following campaign with General Burnside in Knoxville, Tennessee, he was appointed by Major General George G. Meade as Chief of Staff of the Ninth Army Corps. When he resigned his military post due to chronic illness, he was presented with the headquarter flag which had been carried by the division throughout the entire war, as an "expression of their personal esteem" and "testimonial of the success of the division in battle under his command." At the end of the war, he was brevetted Major General, US Volunteers in recognition of his services during the war. After the war, he remained in public service, first as chairman of the board of commissioners of Cook County, formed immediately after the Chicago fire. He served as minister to the Argentine Republic from November 1873 to March 1874.
Bio by: Shiver