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James Alexander Williamson

james alexander williamson, david alexander williamson
American Civil War

  • Battle of Pea Ridge
  • Battle of Chickasaw Bayou
  • Battle of Arkansas Post
  • Vicksburg Campaign
  • Siege of Vicksburg
  • Battle of Lookout Mountain
  • Atlanta Campaign
    • Battle of Jonesborough
Other work lawyer, politician, President of the Atlantic & Pacific RR

James A Williamson February 8, 1829 – September 7, 1902 was a politician, and lawyer who served in the Union army during the American Civil War, rising to the rank of brigadier general He received the Medal of Honor for his actions at the Battle of Chickasaw Bayou


  • 1 Biography
  • 2 Medal of Honor citation
  • 3 See also
  • 4 Notes
  • 5 References
  • 6 External links


Williamson was born in Columbia, Kentucky1 in 1829 When he was fifteen years old his family moved to Iowa, where he worked as a farmer, before studying law and being admitted to the bar In the years prior to the Civil War he served as the chairman of the Iowa State Democratic Committee

When the Civil War began Williamson volunteered in the 4th Iowa Volunteer Infantry Regiment Serving as a first lieutenant he fought at the battle of Pea Ridge where he was wounded on the first day of fighting there On March 4, 1862 he was promoted to lieutenant colonel and then on July 21, 1862 to colonel of the 4th Iowa Colonel Williamson and his regiment spent the fall of 1862 on garrison duty at Helena, Arkansas In December Williamson was part of William T Sherman's force which attacked the Confederate forces at the Battle of Chickasaw Bluffs Williamson was again wounded and for his services here was eventually awarded the Medal of Honor in 1895

Williamson recovered in time to take part in the Vicksburg Campaign and the following Siege of Vicksburg After the fall of the city, he assumed command of the 3rd Brigade, 1st Division, XV Corps until September, 1863 then commanded the 2nd Brigade, 1st Division, XV Corps at the Battle of Chattanooga Williamson's division, commanded by Peter J Osterhaus was temporarily attached to the forces under Joseph Hooker and took part in the Battle of Lookout Mountain The division was returned to the Army of the Tennessee and Williamson led the 2nd Brigade during the Atlanta Campaign At the Battle of Jonesborough he was wounded in the hand On December 19, 1864 he received a brevet promotion to brigadier general of US Volunteers, on January 13, 1865 a full promotion to brigadier general and on March 13, 1865 a brevet promotion to major general of volunteers Briefly during the summer of 1865 he commanded the District of St Louis and was mustered out of the volunteer service on August 24, 1865, but was on an inspection tour of army posts in the West and did not find out until he returned in October 1865

In 1864 Williamson had been elected chairman of the Iowa delegation to the National Republican Convention in Baltimore, but did not attend due to duty to the army After the War he resumed his law practice in Iowa He served as Commissioner of the General Land Office from 1876 to 1881 During this time he served as chairman of the Public Land Commission, which was created by Congress in 1879 He later became President of the Atlantic & Pacific Railroad He was in Jamestown, Rhode Island when he died on September 7, 1902

Medal of Honor citationedit

Rank and Organization: Colonel, 4th Iowa Infantry

Place and Date: At Chickasaw Bayou, Miss, 29 December 1862

Entered service at: Des Moines, Iowa

Born: 8 February 1829, Columbia, Adair County, Ky

Date of issue: 17 January 1895


Led his regiment against a superior force, strongly entrenched, and held his ground when all support had been withdrawn23

See alsoedit

  • Biography portal
  • United States Army portal
  • American Civil War portal
  • List of Medal of Honor recipients
  • List of American Civil War Medal of Honor recipients: T–Z
  • List of American Civil War generals


  1. ^ A Civil War Biography
  2. ^ ""Civil War Medal of Honor citations" S-Z: WILLIAMSON, JAMES A" AmericanCivilWarcom Retrieved November 13, 2013 
  3. ^ "Medal of Honor website" M-Z: WILLIAMSON, JAMES A" United States Army Center of Military History Archived from the original on February 23, 2009 Retrieved November 13, 2013 


  • Eicher, John H, and Eicher, David J, Civil War High Commands, Stanford University Press, 2001, ISBN 0-8047-3641-3
  • A Civil War Biography
  • History of General James A Williamson

External linksedit

  • "James Alexander Williamson" Claim to Fame: Medal of Honor recipients Find a Grave Retrieved 2009-04-17 
Political offices
Preceded by
Samuel S Burdett
Commissioner of the General Land Office
Succeeded by
Noah C McFarland

david alexander williamson, james alexander williamson

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James Alexander Williamson

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