Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography/Weitzel, Godfrey

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
Appletons' Weitzel Godfrey.jpg
Appletons' Weitzel Godfrey signature.jpg

WEITZEL, Godfrey, soldier, b. in Cincinnati, Ohio, 1 Nov., 1835; d. in Philadelphia, Pa., 19 March, 1884. He was graduated at the U. S. military academy in 1855, became 1st lieutenant of engineers in 1860, and was attached to the staff of Gen. Benjamin F. Butler as chief engineer of the Department of the Gulf. After the capture of New Orleans he became assistant military commander and acting mayor of the city. He was commissioned brigadier-general of volunteers, 29 Aug., 1862, routed a large force of the enemy at Labadieville, La., in October of that year, and was brevetted major in the U. S. army for that service. He became captain of engineers, 3 March, 1863, commanded the advance in Gen. Nathaniel P. Banks's operations in western Louisiana in April and May, 1863, a division at the siege of Port, Hudson, La., and a division in the 19th army corps in the Lafourche campaign. On 8 July, 1863, he was brevetted lieutenant-colonel, U. S. army, “for gallant and meritorious services at the siege of Port Hudson.” He joined in the western Louisiana campaign, and from May till September, 1864, was chief engineer of the Army of the James, being engaged at Swift's Creek, the actions near Drury's Bluff, and in constructing the defences of Bermuda Hundred, James River, and Deep Bottom. In August, 1864, he was brevetted major-general of volunteers “for meritorious and distinguished services during the civil war.” He commanded the 18th army corps from September till December, 1864, was brevetted colonel in the U. S. army “for gallant and meritorious services at the capture of Fort Harrison, 30 Sept., 1864,” became full major-general of volunteers on 7 Nov., was second in command of the first expedition to Fort Fisher, and in March and April, 1865, was in charge of all troops north of Potomac river during the final operations against Gen. Robert E. Lee's army, taking possession of Richmond, 3 April, 1865. In March, 1865, he was brevetted brigadier-general in the regular army for services in that campaign, and major-general in the same rank “for gallant and meritorious services in the field during the civil war.” He commanded the Rio Grande district, Texas, in 1865-'6, and was mustered out of volunteer service on 1 March of the latter year. He became major of engineers in 1866, and lieutenant-colonel in 1882, and from that date was in charge of various works of improvement in and near Philadelphia, and chairman of the commission advisatory to the board of harbor commissioners of that city.