The New Student's Reference Work/Wilson, James Harrison

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Wilson, James Harrison, American soldier (major-general United States volunteers), was born near Shawneetown, Ill., Sept. 2, 1837, and was educated at McKendree College there and at West Point, where he graduated in 1860. He was assigned to the corps of topographical engineers, serving in the department of Oregon. He was distinguished as an officer of engineers in the Civil War, notably in the Richmond raid and in the operations near Petersburg; in 1864 he commanded the 3d division of Sherman's cavalry and the cavalry corps in the military division of the Mississippi; participated in the capture of Fort Pulaski, took part in the campaigns of Antietam, Vicksburg, Chattanooga and the Wilderness; commanded in the assault and capture of Selma and Montgomery, Ala., Columbus and Macon, Ga., and finally in the capture of Jeff Davis. After the war he was engaged in railroad and engineering operations; and in the war with Spain he commanded the 1st division of the 1st army corps in the campaign in Porto Rico. He is the author of China; Andrew J. Alexander; and (with the late Chas. A. Dana) a Life of General Grant.