Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography/Ernst, Oswald Hubert

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ERNST, Oswald Hubert, soldier, b. near Cincinnati, Ohio, 27 June, 1842. He entered Harvard in 1858, and two years later was appointed to the U. S. military academy, where he was graduated in 1864, becoming at once 1st lieutenant in the engineer corps. In July, 1864, he became assistant engineer of the Army of the Tennessee, and served throughout the Georgia campaign. After a short service at the U. S. military academy as assistant professor of engineering, he was appointed assistant engineer in constructing fortifications on the Pacific coast, and remained so occupied till 1868. He was promoted captain in March, 1867, had command of an engineer company at Willett's Point, N. Y., in 1868-'71, and in 1870 was sent as astronomer with the government expedition to Spain, to observe the solar eclipse of that year. Later he was appointed instructor of practical military engineering, military signalling, and telegraphy at the military academy, performing also the duties of architect for the more important structures of the place. In 1878 he became assistant engineer on western river improvements, and in 1880 was given charge of the improvements of the Mississippi river, between the Illinois and Ohio rivers. He received his commission as major in May, 1882, lieutenant-colonel, March, 1895, and since 1893 has been superintendent U. S. military academy. Col. Ernst has written articles on engineering subjects, and has also published “A Manual of Practical Military Engineering” (New York, 1873).