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Bill Thayer

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 [decorative delimiter] Class of 1857

Vol. II

(Born Va.)

John T. Magruder

(Ap'd at Large)


Military History. — Cadet at the Military Academy, July 1, 1853, to July 1, 1857, when he was graduated and promoted in the Army to

Bvt. Second Lieut. of Cavalry, July 1, 1857.

Served at the Cavalry School for Practice, Carlisle, Pa., 1857‑58.

Died, June 28, 1858, at Maryville, Neb.: Aged 21.a

Buried, Camp Floyd Cemetery, Fairfield, UT.

Thayer's Note:

a That Lt. Magruder should have died in Nebraska when he was posted to Pennsylvania may catch our attention; the Find-a‑Grave page linked to above states that he was killed in a cavalry charge against Mormons, but also includes a photostat of a notice that appeared in the Sacramento Daily Union, Aug. 17, 1858:

Information has been received of the sudden death of Lieut. Magruder, of Washington City, while on his way to Great Salt Lake with the Utah army. His death was caused by another man, a quarrel having arose between them, which resulted in the shooting of Lieut. Magruder. His parents reside at Washington.

Although Lieut. Magruder is not given his first name in the article, there is no doubt he is our graduate: Heitman's Historical Register and Dictionary of the United States Army lists no other Army officer by that last name who died in 1858. If then — as seems likely to me — the newspaper notice is accurate and Gen. Cullum intentionally chose to ignore it, the question then becomes, "Why?"

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Page updated: 1 Jul 15