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Stonewall Jackson

An 1846 graduate of the United States Military Academy, Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson was one of the most capable and best known general officers of the Civil War. Jackson was serving as a professor at the Virginia Military Institute on the eve of the Civil War and earned his nickname at the First Battle of Bull Run in 1861. He went on to command the Second Corps of the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia and became General Robert E. Lee’s most trusted subordinate. Although his eccentricities were well known, Jackson skillfully conducted the Valley Campaign in 1862 and carried out Lee’s orders for a successful flanking march and assault against the Union line at Chancellorsville in May 1863. Jackson seemed to intuitively interpret Lee’s orders. Tragically, Jackson was mortally wounded by friendly fire at Chancellorsville on May 2. His left arm was amputated, and he died of pneumonia 10 days later. Lee was grief stricken and said, “…He has lost his left arm, but I my right.” Lionized throughout the South, Jackson was 39 at the time of his death.

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