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Bill Thayer

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 [decorative delimiter] Class of 1834

[image ALT: A painted portrait, in a naïve style, of a young man in a military uniform with epaulets. He has a gentle look and is probably in his early thirties; his face is oval and his wavy hair is already slightly receding, accentuating a high forehead. He is the 19c American army officer Philip N. Barbour, the subject of this webpage.]

Painter unknown; in the Kentucky Historical Society Collection.

Photograph in the public domain (Bridgeman v. Corel)

Vol. I

(Born Ky.)

Philip N. Barbour

(Ap'd Ky.)


Philip Norbourne Barbour: Born Apr. 14, 1813, near Bardstown, KY.​a

Military History. — Cadet at the Military Academy, July 1, 1829, to July 1, 1834, when he was graduated and promoted in the Army to

Bvt. Second Lieut., 3d Infantry, July 1, 1834.

Served: on frontier duty at Ft. Towson, I. T., 1834‑36, — Camp Hoskins,

(Second Lieut., 3d Infantry, Apr. 1, 1836)

I. T., 1836, — Ft. Towson, I. T., 1836, — Camp Sabine, La., 1836, — and Ft. Jesup, La., 1836‑40; as Adjutant, 3d Infantry, at Regimental

(First Lieut., 3d Infantry, J. L. & M. 1838)

headquarters, June 1, 1838, to Oct. 12, 1845; in the Florida War, 1840‑42; as Acting Asst. Adjutant-General of the Department of  p582 Florida, Aug. 22, 1842, to June, 1843; in garrison at Ft. Stansbury, Fla.,

(Bvt. Captain, Apr. 15, 1842, for Active and Highly Meritorious Services in the War against the Florida Indians)

1843, — and Jefferson Barracks, Mo., 1843, 1844; on frontier duty at Ft. Jesup (Camp Wilkins), La., 1844; on Recruiting service, 1844; on frontier duty at Ft. Jesup (Camp Wilkins), La., 1844‑45; in Military

(Captain, 3d Infantry, Nov. 26, 1845)

Occupation of Texas, 1845‑46; and in the War with Mexico, 1846, being engaged in the Battle of Palo Alto, May 8, 1846, — Battle of Resaca-de‑la‑Palma,

(Bvt. Major, May 9, 1846, for Gallant and Distinguished Services in the Battles of Palo Alto and Resaca-de‑la‑Palma, Tex.)

May 9, 1846, — and Battle of Monterey, where he was, by an escopet ball, while cheering his men to the charge in the desperate conflict in the streets of the city,

Killed, Sep. 21, 1846: Aged 33.

Buried, Frankfort Cemetery, Frankfort, KY.

Thayer's Notes:

a Maj. Barbour's middle name is given here as on his monument in Frankfort Cemetery, and consistently in the edition of his journal by his wife's granddaughter: the Register's spelling Nordbourne, found in Heitman's Historical Register and Dictionary of the United States Army, must be of less authority. That journal of his Mexican War experiences, with the journal of his wife over roughly the same few months, and other appended material, was edited and published by Rhoda van Bibber Tanner Doubleday (G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1936): it is transcribed in full on my site.

His birth data are as given in several printed works. (In his diary, he confirms the day of the year.) The Official Register of Officers and Cadets of the U. S. Military Academy (OROC) for 1830, gives his age at admission July 1, 1829, as 16 years 1 month, which is thus clearly wrong; I've noticed that OROC is often wrong by a few months.

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Page updated: 18 May 15