A Civil War Biography
Andrew Jackson Smith
Smith was born 28 April 1815 in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. He
graduated from West Point in 1838 and was assigned to the 1st US
Dragoons. He spent his first couple years of military service at the
Carlisle barracks in Pennsylvania learning cavalry tactics then
spent a couple years on recruiting duty before being sent to the
frontier. He fought in Mexico then was assigned to California and
various other post on the frontier.
At the beginning of the war Smith helped organize the 2nd California
Cavalry and served as the units colonel being assigned on 2 October
1861. He resigned from that post to become Henry W. Halleck's chief
of cavalry in the Department of Missouri then the Department of
Mississippi beginning 11 February 1862. Smith was commissioned
brigadier general of volunteers on 17 March 1862. He fought during
the Corinth campaign and commanded a division at Chickasaw Bluffs.
He commanded the 10th Division/ XIII Corps during the Vicksburg
campaign. He commanded the 6th Division/ XVI Corps then the 3rd
Division/ XVI Corps in the Department of Tennessee from late summer
1863 until the spring of 1864. He commanded detached units of both
the XVI and XVII Corps during the Red River campaign.
Smith was commissioned Lieutenant Colonel in the 5th US Cavalry on 9
May 1864 then major general of volunteers three days later. He
commanded the right wing of the XVI Corps during operations in
Mississippi and Tennessee which took place in the summer and early
fall of 1864. He commanded a detachment of George H. Thomas's Army
of the Tennessee in the campaign against John Bell Hood in late 1864
and early 1865. Smith commanded the XVI Corps during the Mobile
campaign. He was brevetted both brigadier general and major general
US Army on 13 March 1865.
Following the war Smith remained in the South commanding the
District of Montgomery, and later of the District of Western
Louisiana. He was mustered out of the volunteer service on 15
January 1866 then commissioned a colonel in the 7th cavalry on 28
July 1866. Smith was appointed postmaster general of St. Louis,
Missouri on 3 April 1869 and resigned from the army a month later on
the sixth of May to take up that appointment. Among other civic
appointments he served as city auditor of St. Louis. On 22 January
1889 Smith was re-commissioned a colonel of cavalry and placed on
the retirement list. He died 30 January 1897 in St. Louis.
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