Original Wartime CDV of Major General Oliver Otis Howard – Waist-up view CDV with great contrast, by Anthony, New York. Accompanied by a bold ink signature with rank.
Oliver Otis Howard (November 8, 1830 – October 26, 1909) was
a career United States Army officer and a Union general in the American Civil
War. He was born at Leeds, Kennebec county, Me., Nov. 8, 1830. Having finished
preparation at Monmouth and Yarmouth, at the age of sixteen he entered Bowdoin
college, in which he was graduated in 1850, with a fair standing. An opportunity was then afforded him to enter
the United States military academy, and he became a cadet in that institution,
graduating in 1854. He stood fourth in
his class, and by his own request was assigned to the ordnance department with
the brevet rank of second lieutenant.
His first service was at Watervliet, N. Y., and Kennebec arsenal, Me.,
and he next served in Florida, being chief ordnance officer during Gen.
Harney's campaign against the Indians.
The following year he was promoted first lieutenant, and was assigned to
duty as acting professor of mathematics at West Point, which position he
continued to hold until the breaking out of the Civil war. In 1861 Lieut. Howard volunteered his
services to the governor of his native state, and was finally, by a regimental
election, made colonel of the 3rd regiment, Me. volunteers. His commission bore the date of May 28, and
by June 1, he was on his way to the national capital with a full regiment. Colonel Howard commanded the 3rd brigade of
the 3rd division during the battle of Bull Run, July 21, and for his conduct
during this campaign was created brigadier-general of volunteers on Sept.
3. He bore a prominent part in the
movement toward the Rappahannock in the spring of 1862, and was then
transferred to the Peninsula, where he participated in the advance against
Richmond. He was twice wounded in the
right arm at the battle of Fair Oaks on May 31, while leading his brigade in a
charge against the enemy, and he lost that arm by amputation. In two months and twenty days after Fair Oaks
General Howard returned to his corps, and was in the Pope campaign in Virginia
participating in the second battle of Bull Run, and during the retreat from
Centerville to Washington, he commanded the rear guard of the army, which was
under fire almost continuously. In the
Maryland campaign he commanded a brigade until Antietam, where General Sedgwick
was wounded, when he took charge of that General's division, which he also
commanded at Fredericksburg.
In November he was promoted to the rank of major-general of
volunteers, and in the following spring he succeeded General Sigel as commander
of the 11th army corps which he led during the sanguinary battles at
Chancellorsville and Gettysburg. In
October 1863, Gen. Howard's corps was engaged in the fighting in Lookout
valley, and he received Gen. Thomas, commendation in further orders the
following month, when he fought under Grant in the battle of Chattanooga,
gaining distinction. During Sherman's
Atlanta campaign in the spring of 1864, General Howard was in command of the
new 4th corps, which formed a part of the army of the Cumberland, seeing
severest service for 100 days. When
General McPherson fell before Atlanta, General Howard succeeded him as
commander of the Army and Department of the Tennessee, and throughout the whole
of the grand march through Georgia his corps formed the right of Sherman's
army. For his part in this campaign he
was appointed brigadier-general in the regular army. He commanded the same wing during the movement
through the Carolinas, and assisted in the operations by virtue of which
Johnston's army was forced to surrender in 1865. For this portion of the campaign General
Howard was brevetted major-general of the regular army. On May 12, 1865, he was assigned to duty in
the war department in the bureau of refugees, freedmen, and abandoned lands, in
which position he remained until July, 1874, when he was assigned to the
command of the Department of the Columbia.
In 1877, he commanded a successful expedition against the Nez Perces
Indians, his infantry marching over 1,400 miles, and the following year
another, nearly as extended, against the Bannocks and Piutes.
In 1881-82 Gen. Howard was superintendent of the United States military academy, and from 1882-86 he commanded the Department of the Platte at Omaha, Neb. In 1886 he was commissioned major-general and placed in command of the division of the Pacific, and after the death of Gen. Sheridan, and the assignment of Maj.-Gen. Schofield to command the U. S. army, General Howard was appointed to the command of the division of the Atlantic, with headquarters at Governor's island in the harbor of New York. He was placed upon the retired list, November 8, 1894.
Inventory Number: AUT 013