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Bill Thayer

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 [decorative delimiter] Class of 1845

Vol. II

(Born N. Y.)

David A. Russell

(Ap'd N. Y.)


David Allen Russell: Born Dec. 10, 1820, Salem, NY.

Military History. — Cadet at the Military Academy, July 1, 1841, to July 1, 1845, when he was graduated and promoted in the Army to

Bvt. Second Lieut., 1st Infantry, July 1, 1845.

Served on frontier duty at Ft. Scott, Kan., 1845‑46; in the War with

(Second Lieut., 4th Infantry, Sep. 21, 1846)

Mexico, 1847; on Recruiting service, 1847; in the War with Mexico, 1847‑48, being engaged in Defense of Convoy at Paso de Ovejas, Aug. 10, National Bridge, Aug. 12, Cerro Gordo, Aug. 15, and Las Animas,

(Bvt. First Lieut., Aug. 15, 1847,
for Gallant and Meritorious Conduct in the several affairs with Guerrilleros, at Paso de Ovejas, National Bridge, and Cerro Gordo, Mex.)

Aug. 19, 1847, — and Combat of Huamantla, Oct. 9, 1847; in garrison at East Pascagoula, Mis., 1848; on Recruiting service, 1848‑50; in garrison

(First Lieut., 4th Infantry, Jan. 1, 1848)

at Ft. Mackinac, Mich., 1850‑51, 1852, — and Ft. Columbus, N. Y., 1852; en route to Oregon, 1852‑53;​a and on frontier duty at Ft. Vancouver, Wash., 1853, — Ft. Steilacoom, Wash., 1853, — Scouting, 1853, — Ft. Steilacoom, Wash., 1853‑54, — Ft. Jones, Cal., 1854‑55, — Ft.

(Captain, 4th Infantry, June 22, 1854)

Dalles, Or., 1855, — Scouting, 1855, — Ft. Dalles, Or., 1855, — Ft. Yakima, Wash., 1855, — Scouting against Yakima Indians, being engaged in the Combat of Tap-pin-ish River (Simcoe Valley), Or., Oct. 6‑8, 1855, — Ft. Dalles, Or., 1855‑56, — Hostilities in Washington Territory, 1856, — Ft. Walla Walla, Wash., 1856‑57, — Ft. Yamhill, Or., 1857‑61, — Camp Sumner, Cal., 1861, — and Lower California, 1861.

 p247  Served during the Rebellion of the Seceding States, 1861‑64: in Defenses of Washington, D. C., Nov. 27, 1861, to Jan. 28, 1862, and Jan. 31 to Mar. 10, 1862; in the Virginia Peninsular Campaign (Army

(Colonel, 7th Massachusetts Volunteers, Jan. 31, 1862)

of the Potomac), Mar. to Aug., 1862, being engaged in the Siege of Yorktown, Apr. 5-May 4, 1862, — Battle of Williamsburg, May 5, 1862, — Battle of Fair Oaks, May 31-June 1, 1862, — and Battles of the Seven Days' change of base to James River, June 26 to July 2, 1862; in the

(Bvt. Lieut.‑Col., July 1, 1862,
for Gallant and Meritorious Services in the Peninsular Campaign)

Maryland Campaign (Army of the Potomac), Sep. to Nov., 1862, being

(Major, 8th Infantry, Aug. 9, 1862)

engaged in the Battle of Crampton's Gap, Sep. 14, 1862, — Battle of Antietam, Sep. 17, 1862, — March to Falmouth, Va., Oct.‑Nov., 1862;

(Brig.‑General, U. S. Volunteers, Nov. 29, 1862)

in command of Brigade, 6th Corps (Army of the Potomac), in the Rappahannock Campaign, Dec., 1862, to June, 1863, being engaged in the Battle of Fredericksburg, Dec. 13, 1862, — Storming of Marye Heights, May 3, 1863, — Battle of Salem, May 3‑4, 1863, — and Combat of Beverly Ford, June 9, 1863; in the Pennsylvania Campaign (Army of the Potomac), June‑July, 1863, being engaged in the Battle of Gettysburg, July 2‑3, 1863, — and Pursuit of the enemy to Warrenton, Va., July,

(Bvt. Colonel, July 1, 1863,
for Gallant and Meritorious Services in the Battle of Gettysburg, Pa.)

1863; in the Rapidan Campaign (Army of the Potomac), Oct. to Dec., 1863, being engaged in the Capture of the Rebel Works at Rappahannock Station, Nov. 7, 1863, — and Mine Run Operations, Nov. 26 to Dec. 3, 1863; in command of Division, 6th Corps (Army of the Potomac), in the Richmond Campaign, being engaged in the Battle of the Wilderness, May 5‑6, 1864, — Battles about Spottsylvania, May 9‑21,

(Bvt. Brig.‑General, U. S. Army, May 6, 1864,
for Gallant and Meritorious Services in the Battle of the Wilderness, Va.)

1864, — Battles of North Anna, May 23‑24, 1864, — Battle of Tolopotomy, May 30, 1864, — Battles and Actions of Cold Harbor, June 1‑13, 1864, — and Siege of and Battles around Petersburg, June 23 to July 10, 1864; in the Washington Campaign, July, 1864, being engaged in the Defense of the Capital, July 11‑12, 1864, — Action before Ft. Stevens, D. C., July 12, 1864, — Skirmish at Snicker's Gap, July 18, 1864, while in pursuit of General Indicates a West Point graduate and gives his Class.Early's Rebel Raiders to Winchester, Va., — and return to Washington, D. C., July, 1864; and in the Shenandoah Campaign in command of Division of 6th Corps, Aug.‑Sep., 1864, being

(Bvt. Maj.‑General, U. S. Army, Sep. 19, 1864,
for Gallant and Meritorious Conduct in the Battle of the Opequan, Va.,
where killed)

engaged in the Battle of Opequan, where he was

Killed, Sep. 19, 1864: Aged 42.

Buried, Evergreen Cemetery, Salem, NY.

Thayer's Note:

a More precisely, Nov. 7, 1852 to June 7, 1853, just to get to California; followed by the further travel to Oregon.

Today we'd go overland across the United States, but it at that time it was considered faster and safer to take a ship to Panama, walk across the isthmus, and take a second ship back to the States. The first group of the Fourth Infantry did that, and were very sorry they did: Lt. Russell's unit benefited from their experience, and their travel was much more pleasant, but accounts for the time consumed. They got to the West Coast by ship around Cape Horn — the remote tip of South America. The horrific details are given by James A. Leyden in A Historical Sketch of the Fourth Infantry, pp18‑19.

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Page updated: 18 Feb 14