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Term: Hamilton, Gen. Charles Smith (1822-1891)

Definition:

b. Western (town), New York, November 16, 1822
d. Milwaukee, Wisconsin, April 17, 1891

Charles Hamilton was a career military officer who commanded troops in both the Mexican-American War and Civil War. He was also a successful businessman and served on the University of Wisconsin’s Board of Regents.

Early Years

After his childhood in upstate New York, Hamilton entered into the military academy at West Point in 1839, where he was a classmate of Gen. Ulysses S. Grant. He graduated in 1843 and was stationed around the Great Lakes. In 1848 he served in the Mexican-American War, where he was wounded and brevetted to captain for gallant service. Over the next five years he commanded companies in Texas, Mississippi, and on the frontier before resigning his commission in 1853, at age 31. He settled in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, and established a linseed-oil mill.

Civil War Service

When the war broke out in 1861, few Wisconsin residents had formal military training. Those who did, such as Hamilton, were immediately given positions of authority. Hamilton was commissioned colonel of the 3rd Wisconsin Infantry on May 11, 1861, and  was promoted to brigadier general in the U.S. Army in August.

For the next year Hamilton led divisions of the U.S. Army in Virginia. In May 1862 he was reassigned to command Union troops fighting in Tennessee and Mississippi. That fall he led divisions at the battles of Iuka and Corinth and was one of the Union’s top three generals serving under Ulysses S. Grant in the West.

In the spring of 1863 Hamilton felt that he had not been given a command to which his talents and service entitled him. On April 13, 1863, he resigned from the Army. President Lincoln requested him to withdraw his resignation but Hamilton refused.

Postwar Years

Hamilton returned to Fond du Lac and resumed his linseed-oil business. In 1869 his old friend, President Grant, appointed him U.S. Marshall for the eastern district of Wisconsin. He also served on the University of Wisconsin’s Board of Regents, 1866-1875. In 1875 he moved to Milwaukee, where he continued to manufacture linseed-oil and in 1878 became president of the Hamilton Paper Co.

Hamilton was active in veterans’ organizations, leading the Wisconsin department of the Military Order of the Loyal Legion for a time. He died on April 17, 1891, at his home in Milwaukee.

Links to Learn More

Biographical sketch by E.B. Quiner on pages 975-979 of his book, "Military History of Wisconsin" (Chicago, 1866).

View original documents about Gen. Hamilton

[Source: Dictionary of Wisconsin Biography IMadison, 1965); Dictionary of American Biography VIII: 183-184; H. L. Conard, ed., History of Milwaukee (Chicago, 1896 ); E.B. Quiner, Military History of Wisconsin (Madison, 1866).]

190 records found

Haan, William George 1863 - 1924
Haas, Carl De 1816 - 1875
Haas, Francis Joseph 1889 - 1953
Haase, Robert D. 1923
Hadley, Jackson 1815 - 1867
Hagerman, James John 1838 - 1909
Hahn, Eugene 1929
Haight, Theron Wilber 1840 - 1913
Haldimand, Frederick, 1718-1791
Hall, Albert, 1881 - 1936
Hall, Arnold Bennett 1881 - 1936
Hall, Deirdre 1947 -
Hall, Sherman 1800 - 1879
Hallows, E. Harold 1904
Hambrecht, George Philip 1871 - 1943
Hamilton, Gen. Charles Smith (1822-1891)
Hamilton, James Edward 1852 - 1940
Hamilton, Leo Richard 1927
Hamilton, William Stephen 1797 - 1850
Hanaway, Donald J. 1933
Hanchett, Luther 1825 - 1862
Handley, John Joseph 1876 - 1941
Handrick, Joseph W. 1965
Hanks, Lucien Mason 1868 - 1950
Hanks, Stanley Charles 1872 - 1945
Hanley, Leo B. 1908
Hanley, Miles Lawrence 1893 - 1954
Hanna, Daniel D. 1923
Hannan, John Joseph 1866 - 1946
Hansen, Conner T. 1913
Hansen, Dave 1947
Hansen, John R. 1917
Hansen, Robert W. 1911
Hansen, William C. 1891
Hanson, Doris
Hanson, Magnus (1822-1881)
Haraszthy [De Moksca), Agoston 1812 - 1869
Hardie, Keith 1910
Harer, Robert W. 1941
Harnack, Mildred Fish 1902-1943
Harnden, Henry 1823 - 1900
Harnischfeger, Henry 1855 - 1930
Harper, Cornelius Allen 1864 - 1951
Harper, Hugh A. 1885
Harriman, Col. Samuel (1826-1897)
Harrington, Timothy Louis 1866 - 1947
Harris, Charles Kassell 1865 - 1930
Harris, Joseph Sr. 1813 - 1889
Harrison, Mark Robert 1819 - 1894
Harsdorf, Sheila E. 1956
Hart, Edwin Bret 1874 - 1953
Harvey, Cordelia (1824–1895)
Harvey, Gov. Louis P. (1820-1862)
Harvey, Lorenzo Dow 1848 - 1922
Harwood, Frank James 1855 - 1940
Hasenohrl, Donald W. 1935
Haskell, Col. Frank A. (1828-1864)
Haskins, Charles H. 1830 - 1910
Haskins, Herbert Eugene 1869 - 1953
Hastings, Edwin George 1872 - 1953
Hastings, Samuel Dexter 1816 - 1903
Hatlestad, Oil Jensen 1823 - 1892
Hatton, William H. 1856 - 1937
Haugen, Nils Pederson 1849 - 1931
Haugh, Paul 1896
Hauke, Thomas A. 1938
Hauser, Jacob 1845 - 1931
Haven, Spencer 1868 - 1938
Hawley, Col. William (1824-1873)
Hayes, William Arthur 1866 - 1942
Hazeltine [Haseltine], Ira Sherwin 1821 - 1899
Hazeltine, Mary Emogene 1868 - 1949
Hazelton, George Cochrane 1832 - 1922
Hazelton, Gerry Whiting 1829 - 1920
Hazen, Chester 1824 - 1900
Heath, Frederick Faries 1864 - 1954
Hebl, Tom 1945
Hecht, Ben 1894 - 1964
Heffernan, Nathan S. 1920
Heg, Col. Hans Christian (1829-1863)
Heg, Even Hansen 1790 - 1850
Heil, Julius Peter 1876 - 1949
Heileman, Gottlieb 1824 - 1878
Heine, Freidrich Wilhelm 1845 - 1921
Heinemann, Benjamin 1850 - 1919
Heinzen, Raymond F. 1918
Heiss, Michael 1818 - 1890
Helbach, David 1948
Held, James E. 1938
Hempsted, Henry N. 1830 - 1898
Hendee, Kirby 1923
Hengell, Henry Charles 1877 - 1937
Hennepin, Louis, 1640-1705?
Henni, John Martin 1805 - 1881
Henry, Glenn L. 1921
Henry, Joseph, 1797-1878
Henry, Marguerite 1902 - 1997
Henry, William 1794 - 1853
Henry, William Arnon 1850 - 1932
Hephner, Gervase A. 1936
Hicks, Emmett Reuben 1854 - 1925
Hicks, John 1847 - 1917
Hiles, George 1825 - 1896
Hill, Charles Lewis 1869 - 1957
Hill, Horatio 1815 - 1867
Hill, Rosa Minoka 1876 - 1952
Hill, Warren Brown 1861 - 1934
Hillemann, Henry A. 1928
Hines, Edward 1863 - 1931
Hines, J.A. 1927
Hinkfuss, Rosemary T. 1931
Hinkley, George Madison 1832 - 1905
Hinz, Emil A. 1889
Hipke, Gilbert J. 1898
Hiroquois
Hirshheimer, Albert 1840 - 1924
Hirst, Arthur Roscoe 1881 - 1932
Hispanic Americans in Wisconsin
Hisrich, Joseph C. 1942
Hitt, Henry D. 1823 - 1907
Hixon, Gideon Cooley 1826 - 1892
Hixson, Hiram Frank 1858 - 1894
Ho-Chunk Indians
Hoan, Daniel W., 1881-1961.
Hoard, Halbert Louis 1861 - 1933
Hoard, William Dempster 1836 - 1918
Hobart, Col. Harrison C. (1815-1902)
Hobbins, Joseph 1816 - 1894
Hochkammer, Jon H. 1956
Hodgson, Albert James 1858 - 1943
Hohlfeld, Alexander Rudolf 1865 - 1956
Hollander, Walter G. 1896
Holmes, Frederick Lionel 1883 - 1946
Holperin, James C. 1950
Holschbach, Vernon W. 1926
Holt, Frank Oscar 1883 - 1948
Holt, William Arthur 1865 - 1953
Holton, Edward Dwight 1815 - 1892
Holzhuber, Franz, 1826 - 1898
Homme, Even Johnson 1843 - 1903
Honadel, Mark R. 1956
Hooper, Jessie Annette Jack [Mrs. Ben Hooper] 1865
Hooper, Moses 1835 - 1932
Hopkins, Benjamin Franklin 1829 - 1870
Hopkins, David R. 1938
Hopkins, James Campbell 1819 - 1877
Horlick, William 1846 - 1936
Horn, Frederick William 1815 - 1893
Horner, John Scott 1802 - 1883
Horton, Alonzo E. 1813 - 1909
Hotchkiss, William Otis 1878 - 1954
Houdini, Harry 1874 - 1926
Hough, Maxine 1961
Houser, Walter L. 1855 - 1928
Hoven, Timothy T. 1963
Howe, James Henry 1827 - 1893
Howe, Timothy Otis 1816 - 1883
Hoxie, Vinnie Ream 1847 - 1914
Hoy, Philo Romayne 1816 - 1892
Hoyme, Gjermund 1847 - 1902
Hoyt, Edith Evans [Mrs. Judson E.] 1862 - 1951
Hoyt, John Wesley 1831 - 1912
Hubbell, Levi 1808 - 1876
Huber, Gregory B. 1956
Huber, Henry Allen 1869 - 1933
Hubler, Mary 1952
Hudd, Thomas Richard 1835 - 1896
Hudnall, George B[Rinton?] Mcclellan 1864 - 1936
Huebsch, Michael D. 1964
Huebschmann, Franz 1817 - 1880
Huelsman, Joanne B. 1938
Huibregtse, Harold F. 1907
Hulce, Tom 1953 -
Hull, Merlin 1870 - 1953
Hulst, Nelson Powell 1842 - 1923
Humphrey, George Colvin 1875 - 1947
Humphrey, Herman Leon 1830 - 1902
Hundertmark, Jean L. 1954
Hungarians in Wisconsin
Hunt, W. Ben 1888 – 1970
Hunt, Walter Henry 1868 - 1942
Hunter, Jeffrey 1926 - 1969
Hurley, Michael Angelo 1840 - 1917
Hurons
Husting, Paul Oscar Adolph 1866 - 1917
Hutchins, Frank Avery 1851 - 1914
Hutchison, David E. 1943
Hutnik, Willis J. 1915
Hutter, William Herman 1875 - 1951
Hyer, George 1819 - 1872

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