Zebulon Montgomery Pike was an American brigadier general and explorer for whom Pikes Peak in Colorado was renamed. As a U. S. Army officer he led two expeditions under authority of third President Thomas Jefferson through the new Louisiana Purchase territory, first in 1805-06 to reconnoiter the upper northern reaches of the Mississippi River, in 1806-07 to explore the Southwest to the fringes of the northern Spanish-colonial settlements of New Mexico and Texas. Pike's expeditions coincided with other Jeffersonian expeditions, including the Lewis and Clark Expedition and the Thomas Freeman and Peter Custis expedition up the Red River. Pike's second expedition crossed the Rocky Mountains into what is now southern Colorado, which led to his capture by the Spanish colonial authorities near Santa Fe, who sent Pike and his men to Chihuahua, for interrogation. In 1807, Pike and some of his men were escorted by the Spanish through Texas and released near American territory in Louisiana. In 1810, Pike published an account of his expeditions, a book so popular that it was translated into Dutch and German languages, for publication in Europe.
He achieved the rank of brigadier general in the American Army and served during the War of 1812, until he was killed during the Battle of York, in April 1813, outside the British colonial capital of Upper Canada. Pike was born during the Revolutionary War, on January 5, 1779, near Lamberton, now called Lamington in Bedminster, New Jersey, in Somerset County, New Jersey, he would follow in the footsteps of his father named Zebulon, who had begun his own career in the military service of the United States beginning in 1775, at the outset of the American Revolutionary War. The younger Pike grew to adulthood with his family at a series of outposts in Ohio and Illinois – the United States' northwestern frontier at the time, he was commissioned as a second lieutenant of infantry in 1799 and promoted to first lieutenant that same year. Zebulon Pike, Jr. married Clarissa Harlow Brown in 1801. They had one child who survived to adulthood, Clarissa Brown Pike, who married President William Henry Harrison's son, John Cleves Symmes Harrison.
They had four other children. Pike's military career included working on logistics and payroll at a series of frontier posts, including Fort Bellefontaine near St. Louis. General James Wilkinson, appointed Governor of the Upper Louisiana Territory and headquartered there, became his mentor. In the summer of 1805, Wilkinson ordered Pike to locate the source of the Mississippi River, explore the northern portion of the newly created Louisiana Territory, expel Canadian fur traders illegally trading in the borders of the United States. Pike left St. Louis on August 1805, proceeding upstream by pirogue, they reached the confluence of the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers on September 21st, where he negotiated a treaty with the Dakota, purchasing the future site of Fort Snelling. The expedition proceeded further upriver, stopping to construct a winter camp at the mouth of the Swan River, south of present-day Little Falls, on October 16th. On December 10th, they continued upstream along the now-frozen river on foot, visiting a number of British North West Company fur posts along the way.
They reached the fur post at Leech Lake on February 1st, stayed nearly three weeks. Pike informed the traders they were within the boundaries of the United States, henceforth required to abide by its laws and regulations. Pike met with many prominent Ojibwe chiefs, prevailing on them to surrender the medals and flags given to them as tokens of allegiance by the British, offering American replacement medals, he relayed the United States' desire that the Ojibwe and Dakota cease their mutual hostility, invited the chiefs to attend a peace conference in St. Louis. On February 10th, they ceremonially shot the British red ensign from the fur company's flag pole, replacing it with an American flag. On a short side trip, Pike traveled to the North West Company fur post on Upper Red Cedar Lake, designating the lake as the ultimate source of the Mississippi, taking celestial observations to determine itslatitude. Pike and his men left Leech Lake om February 18th, carrying diplomatic tokens from the Ojibwe chiefs to present to the Dakota chiefs as a gesture of reconciliation, arriving at their winter encampment on March 5th.
They re-embarked in their pirogues for the downriver journey on April 7th, reaching St. Louis on April 20th. Pike's was the second expedition dispatched by the government into its new territory, the first to return. After Pike returned from this first expedition, General Wilkinson immediately ordered him to mount a second expedition, this time to explore and find the headwaters of the Arkansas and Red rivers. Additional objectives of this exploratory expedition into the southwestern part of the Louisiana Territory were to evaluate natural resources and establish friendly relations with Native Americans. Beginning July 15, 1806, Pike led what became known as the "Pike Expedition". General Wilkinson's son James served as one of his lieutenants, although it now seems that Wilkinson planned that the Spanish who controlled Mexico would capture him and his men. In early November 1806, Pike and his team sighted and tried to climb to the summit of the peak named after him, they made it as far as Mt. Rosa, located southeast of Pikes Peak, before giving up the ascent in waist-deep snow.
They had gone two days without food. They continued south, searching for the Red
Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben
Friedrich Wilhelm August Heinrich Ferdinand Steuben referred to as Baron von Steuben, was a Prussian and an American military officer. He served as Inspector General and a Major General of the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War, he is credited with being one of the fathers of the Continental Army in teaching them the essentials of military drills and disciplines. He wrote Regulations for the Order and Discipline of the Troops of the United States, the book that served as the standard United States drill manual until the War of 1812, he served as General George Washington's chief of staff in the final years of the war. Baron von Steuben was born in the fortress town of Magdeburg, Germany, on September 17, 1730, the son of Royal Prussian Engineer Capt. Baron Wilhelm von Steuben and his wife, Elizabeth von Jagvodin; when his father entered the service of Empress Anna of Russia, young Friedrich went with him to Crimea and to Kronstadt, staying until the Russian war against the Turks under General Burkhard Christoph von Münnich.
In 1740, Steuben's father returned to Prussia and Friedrich was educated in the garrison towns Neisse and Breslau by Jesuits. Despite his military education by a Catholic order, von Steuben remained critical of Roman Catholicism. Von Steuben's family were Protestants in the Kingdom of Prussia, after his emigration to America he became a member of the Reformed German Church, a Reformed congregation in New York, it is said that at age 14 he served as a volunteer with his father in one of the campaigns of the War of the Austrian Succession. Baron von Steuben joined the Prussian Army at age 17, he served as a second lieutenant during the Seven Years' War in 1756, was wounded at the 1757 Battle of Prague. He served as adjutant to the free battalion of General Johann von Mayr and was promoted to first lieutenant in 1759. In August 1759 he was wounded a second time at the Battle of Kunersdorf. In the same year, he was appointed deputy quartermaster at the general headquarters. In 1761 he became adjutant of the Major General Von Knobloch upon being taken prisoner by the Russians at Treptow.
He subsequently attained the rank of captain, served as aide-de-camp to Frederick the Great. Upon the reduction of the army at the end of the war, in 1763, Steuben was one of many officers who found themselves unemployed. Towards the end of his life, Steuben indicated in a letter that "an inconsiderate step and an implacable personal enemy" led to his leaving the Prussian army. In 1764 Steuben became Hofmarschall to Fürst Josef Friedrich Wilhelm of Hohenzollern-Hechingen, a post he held until 1777. In 1769 the Duchess of Wurttemberg, niece of Frederick the Great, presented him with the Cross of the Order of De la Fidelite. In 1771 he began to use the title baron; that same year he accompanied the prince to France. Failing to find funds, they returned to Germany in 1775 in debt. In 1763 Steuben had been formally introduced to the future French Minister of War, Claude Louis, Comte de Saint-Germain, in Hamburg, they met again in Paris in 1777. The Count realizing the potential of an officer with Prussian general staff training, introduced him to Benjamin Franklin.
Franklin, was unable to offer Steuben a rank or pay in the American army. The Continental Congress had grown tired of foreign mercenaries coming to America and demanding a high rank and pay. Promoting these men over qualified American officers caused discontent in the ranks. Von Steuben would have to go to America as a volunteer, present himself to Congress. Steuben returned to Prussia. Steuben found waiting for him allegations that he engaged in homosexual relationships with young men while in the service of Prince Josef Friedrich Wilhelm of Hohenzollern-Hechingen; the allegations were never proven, but Steuben knew they would stymie his chances at an officer's position in Europe. Threatened with prosecution for his alleged homosexuality, Steuben returned to Paris. Rumors followed him from Prussia to America that he was homosexual, but there never was an investigation of von Steuben and he received a congressional pension after the war. Upon the Count's recommendation, Steuben was introduced to future president George Washington by means of a letter from Franklin as a "Lieutenant General in the King of Prussia's service", an exaggeration of his actual credentials that appears to be based on a mistranslation of his service record.
He was advanced travel funds and left Europe from Marseilles on Friday, September 26, 1777, on board the frigate Flamand. The Baron, his Italian Greyhound Azor, his young aide-de-camp Louis de Pontière, his military secretary, Peter Stephen Du Ponceau, two other companions, reached Portsmouth, New Hampshire, on December 1, 1777, where they were arrested for being British because Steuben had mistakenly outfitted them in red uniforms, they were extravagantly entertained in Boston. On February 5, 1778, Steuben and his party arrived in York, where the Continental Congress had relocated after being ousted from Philadelphia by the British advance. Arrangements were made for Steuben to be paid following the successful completion of the war according to his contributions, he arrived at Valley Forge on February 23, 1778, reported for duty as a volunteer. One soldier's first impression of the Baron was "of the ancient fabled God of War... he seemed to me a perfect personification of Mars. The t
Martin Ignatius Joseph Griffin
Martin Ignatius Joseph Griffin was an American Catholic journalist and historian, instrumental to the founding of the American Catholic Historical Society. He contributed to scholarly journals and was the author of several books and monographs on the Catholic history of the United States. Griffin was born at Philadelphia on October 23, 1842. From an early age, Griffin became known as a regular contributor and editor with various Catholic publications. In 1872 he was made secretary of the Irish Catholic Benevolent Union, both founded and edited its journal from 1873 to 1894; this publication began as the I. C. B. U. Journal but was called Griffin's Journal. Articles on American Catholic history were a regular feature in his journal; this historical interest led to the founding of the American Catholic Historical Society on July 22, 1884. Griffin remained librarian of that society until his death. In January 1887, he acquired the journal of newly-defunct Ohio Valley Catholic Historical Society and continued its publication under the name American Catholic Historical Researches.
This he continued to edit until his death. He died in Philadelphia on November 10, 1911. Three years after his death, Griffin was praised as "an indefatigable delver into the byways of the past" by the Catholic Encyclopedia because of the extent and quality of his research into the Catholic history of the United States. Among his publications are two major books, a History of Commodore John Barry and Catholics and the American Revolution. Griffin published monographs on the history of Old St. Joseph's and several other Philadelphia churches, on Bishop Michael Francis Egan, O. S. F. Thomas Fitzsimons, on the trial of John Ury
French Revolutionary Wars
The French Revolutionary Wars were a series of sweeping military conflicts lasting from 1792 until 1802 and resulting from the French Revolution. They pitted France against Great Britain and several other monarchies, they are divided in the War of the Second Coalition. Confined to Europe, the fighting assumed a global dimension. After a decade of constant warfare and aggressive diplomacy, France had conquered a wide array of territories, from the Italian Peninsula and the Low Countries in Europe to the Louisiana Territory in North America. French success in these conflicts ensured the spread of revolutionary principles over much of Europe; as early as 1791, the other monarchies of Europe looked with outrage at the revolution and its upheavals. Anticipating an attack, France declared war on Prussia and Austria in the spring of 1792 and they responded with a coordinated invasion, turned back at the Battle of Valmy in September; this victory emboldened the National Convention to abolish the monarchy.
A series of victories by the new French armies abruptly ended with defeat at Neerwinden in the spring of 1793. The French suffered additional defeats in the remainder of the year and these difficult times allowed the Jacobins to rise to power and impose the Reign of Terror to unify the nation. In 1794, the situation improved for the French as huge victories at Fleurus against the Austrians and at the Black Mountain against the Spanish signaled the start of a new stage in the wars. By 1795, the French had captured the Austrian Netherlands and knocked Spain and Prussia out of the war with the Peace of Basel. A hitherto unknown general named Napoleon Bonaparte began his first campaign in Italy in April 1796. In less than a year, French armies under Napoleon decimated the Habsburg forces and evicted them from the Italian peninsula, winning every battle and capturing 150,000 prisoners. With French forces marching towards Vienna, the Austrians sued for peace and agreed to the Treaty of Campo Formio, ending the First Coalition against the Republic.
The War of the Second Coalition began in 1798 with the French invasion of Egypt, headed by Napoleon. The Allies took the opportunity presented by the French effort in the Middle East to regain territories lost from the First Coalition; the war began well for the Allies in Europe, where they pushed the French out of Italy and invaded Switzerland – racking up victories at Magnano and Novi along the way. However, their efforts unraveled with the French victory at Zurich in September 1799, which caused Russia to drop out of the war. Meanwhile, Napoleon's forces annihilated a series of Egyptian and Ottoman armies at the battles of the Pyramids, Mount Tabor and Abukir; these victories and the conquest of Egypt further enhanced Napoleon's popularity back in France and he returned in triumph in the fall of 1799. However, the Royal Navy had won the Battle of the Nile in 1798, further strengthening British control of the Mediterranean. Napoleon's arrival from Egypt led to the fall of the Directory in the Coup of 18 Brumaire, with Napoleon installing himself as Consul.
Napoleon reorganized the French army and launched a new assault against the Austrians in Italy during the spring of 1800. This brought a decisive French victory at the Battle of Marengo in June 1800, after which the Austrians withdrew from the peninsula once again. Another crushing French triumph at Hohenlinden in Bavaria forced the Austrians to seek peace for a second time, leading to the Treaty of Lunéville in 1801. With Austria and Russia out of the war, the United Kingdom found itself isolated and agreed to the Treaty of Amiens with Napoleon's government in 1802, concluding the Revolutionary Wars. However, the lingering tensions proved too difficult to contain and the Napoleonic Wars began a few years with the formation of the Third Coalition, continuing the series of Coalition Wars; the key figure in initial foreign reaction to the revolution was Holy Roman Emperor Leopold II, brother of Louis XVI's Queen Marie Antoinette. Leopold had looked on the Revolution with equanimity, but became more and more disturbed as the Revolution became more radical, although he still hoped to avoid war.
On 27 August and King Frederick William II of Prussia, in consultation with emigrant French nobles, issued the Declaration of Pillnitz, which declared the interest of the monarchs of Europe in the well-being of Louis and his family, threatened vague but severe consequences if anything should befall them. Although Leopold saw the Pillnitz Declaration as a non-committal gesture to placate the sentiments of French monarchists and nobles, it was seen in France as a serious threat and was denounced by the revolutionary leaders. France issued an ultimatum demanding that the Habsburg Monarchy of Austria under Leopold II, Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire renounce any hostile alliances and withdraw its troops from the French border; the reply was evasive and the Assembly voted for war on 20 April 1792 against Francis II, after a long list of grievances presented by foreign minister Charles François Dumouriez. Dumouriez prepared an immediate invasion of the Austrian Netherlands, where he expected the local population to rise against Austrian rule as they had earlier in 1790.
However, the revolution had disorganized the army, the forces raised were insufficient for the invasion. Following the declaration of war, French soldiers deserted en masse and in one case murdered their general, Théob
Thomas Humphrey Cushing
Thomas Humphrey Cushing was an officer in the Continental Army, the United States Army, became a collector of customs for the port of New London, Connecticut. Cushing began his military career as a sergeant in the 6th Continental Regiment in January 1776, he was commissioned a 2nd lieutenant in the 1st Massachusetts Regiment in January 1777 and was promoted to 1st Lieutenant in January 1778. He was taken prisoner in May 1781 and was exchanged, he was breveted to the rank of captain in September 1783. In 1783 Cushing became an original member of the Massachusetts Society of the Cincinnati. Following the British evacuation of New York City in November 1783, the bulk of the Continental Army was discharged. Cushing was retained in Jackson's Continental Regiment, commanded by Brevet Brigadier General Henry Jackson, was one of the last officers to be discharged from the Continental Army when the regiment was disbanded on June 20, 1784. In 1783, Cushing became an Original Member of the Massachusetts Society of the Cincinnati.
On March 4, 1791 Cushing was commissioned a captain in the 2nd Infantry Regiment. On March 3, 1793 he was commissioned as a major in the 1st Sublegion. From February 27, 1797 to May 22, 1798 he served as Inspector General of the Army. In 1799, he commissioned artist James Peale to create a miniature portrait of himself. On June 15, 1800 he was re-appointed as Adjutant and Inspector General and held the office until April 2, 1807. From 1800 to 1807 he resided in Washington, D. C.. Cushing was promoted to lieutenant colonel of the 2nd Infantry on April 1, 1802, he was promoted to colonel of the same regiment on September 7, 1805. In early 1811, on the order of Brigadier General Wade Hampton I, Cushing was arrested and court martialed on charges of disobedience to orders and misuse of government funds; the court-martial first met on April 26, 1811 in Baton Rouge and was presided over by Colonel Alexander Smyth, with Winfield Scott appointed as the judge advocate. It lasted over a year and on May 5, 1812, Cushing was acquitted of most charges, received only a written reprimand for the minor charges of which he was convicted.
Cushing was promoted to the rank of brigadier general on July 2, 1812. During the War of 1812, he served as Adjutant General of the Army from July 6, 1812 to March 12, 1813, he was assigned as commander of Military District Number 1 with his headquarters at Boston. After the war's end, he retired from the Army on June 15, 1815. In January 1816 Cushing was appointed collector of customs for the port of New London, succeeding Jedediah Huntington. In 1817, Cushing fought a duel with Virginia congressman William J. Lewis and was saved when the bullet struck his watch; the two resolved their differences, Lewis, stepping up to the general, said: "I congratulate you, general, on having a watch that will keep time from eternity." Cushing died in New London in 1822. He was buried in the Second Burial Ground in New London but his remains were relocated to the Cedar Grove Cemetery in the same city. Sergeant, 6th Continental Infantry - 1 January 1776 2nd Lieutenant, 1st Massachusetts Infantry - 1 January 1777 1st Lieutenant, 1st Massachusetts Infantry - 12 January 1778 Brevet Captain - 30 September 1783 1st Lieutenant, Jackson's Continental Regiment - November 1783 Discharged - 20 June 1784 Captain, 2nd Infantry - 4 March 1791 Captain, 2nd Sub-Legion - 4 September 1792 Major, 1st Sub-Legion - 3 March 1793 Major, 1st Infantry - 1 November 1796 Lieutenant Colonel, 2nd Infantry - 1 April 1802 Colonel, 2nd Infantry - 7 September 1805 Brigadier General, United States Army - 2 July 1812 Retired - 15 June 1815 List of Adjutant Generals of the U.
S. Army List of Inspectors General of the U. S. Army Hampton, Wade. Trial of Col. Thomas H. Cushing. Philadelphia: Moses Thomas. Retrieved 2009-05-06. Drake, Francis S.. Memorials of the Society of the Cincinnati of Massachusetts. Boston: Society of the Cincinnati of Massachusetts. P. 271. Retrieved 2009-05-06. Wilson, J. G.. "Cushing, Thomas Humphrey". Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography. New York: D. Appleton. Carl Russell Fish; the Civil Service and the Patronage. New York: Longmans, Co. pp. 54–55. "Cushing, Thomas Humphrey". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 2009-05-06. "Portrait of Major Thomas Humphrey Cushing". Indianapolis Museum of Art. Retrieved 2009-05-06. Thomas H. Cushing at Find a Grave
Battle of Germantown
The Battle of Germantown was a major engagement in the Philadelphia campaign of the American Revolutionary War. It was fought on October 4, 1777, at Germantown, between the British Army led by Sir William Howe, the American Continental Army, with the 2nd Canadian Regiment, under George Washington. After defeating the Continental Army at the Battle of Brandywine on September 11, the Battle of Paoli on September 20, Howe outmaneuvered Washington, seizing Philadelphia, the capital of the United States, on September 26. Howe left a garrison of some 3,000 troops in Philadelphia, while moving the bulk of his force to Germantown an outlying community to the city. Learning of the division, Washington determined to engage the British, his plan called for four separate columns to converge on the British position at Germantown. The two flanking columns were composed of 3,000 militia, while the centre-left, under Nathanael Greene, the centre-right under John Sullivan, the reserve under Lord Stirling were made up of regular troops.
The ambition behind the plan was to surprise and destroy the British force, much in the same way as Washington had surprised and decisively defeated the Hessians at Trenton. In Germantown, Howe had the 40th Foot spread across his front as pickets. In the main camp, Wilhelm von Knyphausen commanded the British left, while Howe himself led the British right. A heavy fog caused a great deal of confusion among the approaching Americans. After a sharp contest, Sullivan's column routed the British pickets. Unseen in the fog, around 120 men of the British 40th Foot barricaded the Chew Mansion; when the American reserve moved forward, Washington made the erroneous decision to launch repeated assaults on the position, all of which failed with heavy casualties. Penetrating several hundred yards beyond the mansion, Sullivan's wing became dispirited, running low on ammunition and hearing cannon fire behind them; as they withdrew, Anthony Wayne's division collided with part of Greene's late-arriving wing in the fog.
Mistaking each other for the enemy, they opened fire, both units retreated. Meanwhile, Greene's left-centre column threw back the British right. With Sullivan's column repulsed, the British left outflanked Greene's column; the two militia columns had only succeeded in diverting the attention of the British, had made no progress before they withdrew. Despite the defeat, France impressed by the American success at Saratoga, decided to lend greater aid to the Americans. Howe did not vigorously pursue the defeated Americans, instead turning his attention to clearing the Delaware River of obstacles at Red Bank and Fort Mifflin. After unsuccessfully attempting to draw Washington into combat at White Marsh, Howe withdrew to Philadelphia. Washington, his army intact, withdrew to Valley Forge, where he re-trained his forces; the Philadelphia campaign had begun badly for the Americans. Washington's Continental Army suffered a string of defeats at Cooch's Bridge and Paoli. After inflicting a stinging defeat on Anthony Wayne's division at Paoli on September 20, the British army marched north to Valley Forge west to the French Creek bridge.
At this point, Howe's right wing faced Fatland Ford on the Schuylkill River near Valley Forge while the left wing was opposite Gordon's Ford at French Creek and the left center faced Richardson's Ford. The American army defended all these Schuylkill crossings, plus one farther downstream at Swede's Ford near Norristown. On September 22, a small British force under Sir William Erskine feinted north and another force mounted a demonstration at Gordon's Ford. Howe's moves convinced Washington that the Britisher was trying to seize his supply base at Reading and turn his right flank. Washington moved north, they crossed the Schuylkill at Fatland and Richardson's Fords without opposition, after a brief rest, headed downstream toward Swede's Ford where the American militia abandoned three cannons. Charles Cornwallis subsequently seized Philadelphia for the British on September 26, dealing a blow to the revolutionary cause. Howe left a garrison of 3,462 men to defend the city, moving the bulk of his force north, some 9,728 men, to the outlying community of Germantown.
With the campaigning season drawing to a close, Howe determined to locate and destroy the main American army. Howe established his headquarters at the former country home of James Logan. Despite having suffered successive defeats, Washington saw an opportunity to entrap and decisively defeat the divided British army, he resolved to attack the Germantown garrison, as the last effort of the year before entering winter quarters. His plan called for a ambitious assault. Washington's hope was that the British would be surprised and overwhelmed much how the Hessians were at Trenton. Germantown was a hamlet of stone houses, spreading from what is now known as Mount Airy on the north, to what is now Market Square in the south. Extending southwest from Market Square was Schoolhouse Lane, running 1.5 miles to the point where Wissahickon Creek emptied from a steep gorge, into the Schuylkill River. Howe had established his main camp along the high ground of Church lanes; the western wing of the camp, under the command of Hessian general Wilhelm von Knyphausen, had a picket of two Jäger battalions, positioned on the high ground above the mouth of the Wissahickon to the far left.
A brigade of Hessians, two brigades of British regulars camped along Market Square. East of the Square, two British brigades under the command
Absalom Baird was a career United States Army officer who distinguished himself as a Union Army general in the American Civil War. Baird received the Medal of Honor for his military actions. Baird was born in Pennsylvania, he graduated from the preparatory department of Washington College in 1841. He enrolled in the United States Military Academy and graduated in 1849, ranked ninth in a class of 43. From 1852 to 1859, he was a mathematics instructor at West Point, where one of his students was James McNeill Whistler. From 1859 to 1861, he served in Virginia; when the Civil War broke out in 1861, Baird was promoted to brevet captain. He fought at the First Battle of Bull Run under Brig. Gen. Daniel Tyler. On November 12, 1861, Baird was promoted to major in the Regular Army while serving as an assistant inspector general, he became chief of staff to Maj. Gen. Erasmus D. Keyes during the first part of the Siege of Yorktown, where his service earned him a further promotion to brigadier general of U.
S. Volunteers on April 30, 1862, to rank from April 28, 1862. In April 1862, Baird took command of the 27th Brigade, 7th Division in the Army of the Ohio under Maj. Gen. Don Carlos Buell. Baird helped secure the Cumberland Gap in June 1862 under George W. Morgan, he commanded the 3rd Division, Army of Kentucky where his troops fared poorly in the battle of Thompson's Station though Baird was not involved. His troops were present at the battle of the Harpeth River before being assimilated into the Army of the Cumberland. Baird's division became the 1st Division of Maj. Gen. George Henry Thomas's XIV Corps, it was in this post that he won fame for his heroic efforts at the Battle of Chickamauga and the Chattanooga Campaign. Baird won a brevet promotion to colonel in Regular Army for Chattanooga. In the Atlanta Campaign, Baird led a brigade charge in the Battle of Jonesborough which earned him the Medal of Honor, he led his division in Maj. Gen. William T. Sherman's March to the Sea and Carolinas Campaign.
Baird led his division in the Battle of Bentonville in the latter campaign. On January 23, 1865, President Abraham Lincoln nominated Baird for appointment to the brevet grade of major general of volunteers, to rank from September 1, 1864, the U. S. Congress confirmed the award on February 14, 1865. On April 10, 1866, President Andrew Johnson nominated Baird for appointment as brevet brigadier general in the Regular Army, to rank from March 13, 1865, the U. S. Senate confirmed the appointment on May 4, 1866. On July 17, 1866, President Andrew Johnson nominated Baird for appointment as brevet major general in the regular U. S. Army, to rank from March 13, 1865, the U. S. Senate confirmed the appointment on July 23, 1866. Baird was mustered out of the volunteer service on September 1, 1866. Following the war, Baird served as commander of the department of Louisiana, he was appointed an assistant inspector general with the grade of lieutenant colonel on June 17, 1867. He was appointed Inspector General of the Army on March 11, 1885, was promoted to a full grade brigadier general on September 22, 1885.
In 1887, he traveled to France to observe military maneuvers, was named a Commander of the Légion d'honneur. Baird retired from the Army on August 20, 1888, having reached the mandatory retirement age of 64. On April 22, 1896, Baird was awarded the Medal of Honor for leading "an assault upon the enemy's works" at the Battle of Jonesborough on September 1, 1864, he was a veteran companion of the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States and a member of the General Society of Colonial Wars. He died at Relay, Maryland near Baltimore, is buried in section 1, lot 55, at Arlington National Cemetery, Virginia, his son William Baird became a lieutenant colonel in the U. S. Army, his grandson John Absalom Baird graduated from the US Naval Academy in 1911, became a colonel in the U. S. Army. Rank and organization: Brigadier General, U. S. Volunteers. Place and date: At Jonesboro, September 1, 1864. Entered service at: Washington, Pennsylvania. Birth: Washington, Pennsylvania. Date of issue: April 22, 1896.
Citation: Voluntarily led a detached brigade in an assault upon the enemy's works. List of Medal of Honor recipients List of American Civil War Medal of Honor recipients: A–F List of American Civil War generals Eicher, John H. and David J. Eicher, Civil War High Commands. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2001. ISBN 0-8047-3641-3. "Absalom Baird". Claim to Fame: Medal of Honor recipients. Find a Grave. Retrieved November 7, 2007. "Absalom Baird, Medal of Honor recipient". American Civil War. United States Army Center of Military History. June 8, 2009. Archived from the original on 14 December 2007. Retrieved December 8, 2007. American National Biography, vol. 1, pp. 906–907. "Arlingtoncemetery.net profile, with gravestone photos". Retrieved September 24, 2010. "Photographs of Absalom Baird". Archived from the original on February 8, 2008. Retrieved September 24, 2010. "New York Times obituary". The New York Times. June 15, 1905. Retrieved September 24, 2010