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Army of the Potomac (Confederate)

        On May 24, 1861, Brigadier-General M. L. Bonham was placed in command of the troops on the line of Alexandria. On the 31st, he was relieved by Brigadier-General P. G. T. Beauregard. The forces here gathered were denominated the Army of the Potomac (afterward First Corps, Army of the Potomac) and consisted of six brigades, some unattached troops, and artillery, by the date of the battle of Bull Run. The Army of the Shenandoah joined this force on July 20th, when Johnston superseded Beauregard. The Department of Northern Virginia was created October 22, 1861, with Johnston at its head. It included the District of the Potomac (Beauregard) ; Valley District (T. J. Jackson), and Aquia District (T. H. Holmes.) In February, 1862, some of the troops in the Army of the Northwest came under Johnston's control, giving his entire command a strength of over eighty-two thousand. Beauregard had been sent to Kentucky on January 29th, and the troops in the Potomac district were now divided into four divisions with several separate detachments. On March 14th, the Army of the Potomac was denominated the Army of Northern Virginia. The total force then amounted to about fifty-five thousand.
        General Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard (U. S. M. A. 1838) was born near New Orleans, May 28, 1818, and entered the Engineer Corps. He served with distinction in the Mexican War, and at the outbreak of the Civil War resigned his commission (February 20, 1861), to enter the confederate army as a brigadier-general, being given command of the Confederate forces bombarding Fort Sumter. He took command of the Army of the Potomac on June 20th. After Bull Run he was made general. He was given the command of the Army of the Mississippi in March, 1862, and was second in command after A. S. Johnston joined his forces with it. After the latter's death at Shiloh, Beauregard remained at the head of the army until after the withdrawal from Corinth at the end of May. In 1863, he defended Charleston, and after May, 1864, cooperated with Lee in the defense of Petersburg and Richmond. He commanded the Confederate forces in the Carolinas in 1865, merging them with those under General J. E. Johnston, and surrendered his army to Sherman. After the war, he was a railroad president, adjutant-general of Louisiana, and manager of the State lottery. He died in New Orleans, February 20,1893.
Source: "Photographic History of the Civil War"

This Page last updated 03/28/04


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