Civil War Union Army Brigadier General. Born in Potsdam, New York, he graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York in 1854, placing twenty-seventh in a class of forty-six (his classmates included future Union generals Oliver O. Howard and Thomas H. Ruger, as well as future Confederate generals George Washington Custis Lee, John Pegram, Stephen Dill Lee, and J.E.B. Stuart). He showed an aptitude for the artillery and served in that branch until a month before the end of his career. Assigned first to the 2nd United States Artillery, then to the 4th United States Artillery regiment, in the years preceding the Civil War he served on the Texas frontier, in Florida during the Third Seminole War, in Kansas helping to quell the sectional strife there, and in Utah during uprisings by the Mormons. When the Civil War, began he was promoted in May 1861 to Captain and given command of Battery I, 5th United States Regular Light Artillery, one of the newly-raised Regular Army units created to meet the secession crisis. He commanded the battery through the Spring 1862 Peninsular Campaign, the August 1862 Second Battle of Bull Run, and the September 1862 Battle of Antietam before being advanced to command the artillery of the Army of the Potomac’s V Corps. He led the Corps artillery at the December 1862 Battle of Fredericksburg, and then at the May 1863 Battle of Chancellorsville. On June 6, 1863 he was commissioned as a Brigadier General of Volunteers, and was assigned to command the 3rd Infantry Brigade, 2nd Division of the V Corps. On the Second Day of the Battle of Gettysburg (July 2, 1863), his brigade was rushed to the summit of Little Round Top, which was undefended and about to be overrun by attacking Confederates. The 140th New York Infantry of his brigade initially stemmed the tide, taking great casualties that included their commander, Colonel Patrick O’ Rorke. Soon after General Weed reached the summit, and as he was standing next to the artillery of Lieutenant Charles E. Hazlett’s Battery D, 5th United States Artillery, he was shot in the chest, possibly by a Confederate sharpshooter occupying Devil’s Den. In a scene that has become famous in Gettysburg lore, as he lay on the ground after being wounded, General Weed called over Lieutenant Hazlett to talk to him, and as Hazlett was bending over he was shot in the head and instantly killed, his body falling on the prostrate general. General Weed was brought to the Weikert Farmhouse, where he died around nine P.M. that evening (he was visited before he died by memoirist Tillie Pierce, who did not learn his identity until the next day). Buried near the farmhouse, his remains were exhumed and brought to lie in state in New York City, New York’s City Hall before his funeral in the Dutch Reformed Church, Tompkinsville, Staten Island, and his burial in Moravian Cemetery on July 15, 1863.
Bio by: RPD2