A Civil War Biography

George Hume Steuart

Steuart was born 24 August 1828 in Baltimore, Maryland. He graduated from West Point, 37th in the class of 1848, and was assigned to frontier duty with the cavalry mostly fighting Indians. He was part of the US Army's 1857-1858 Utah expedition.

Although Maryland was forcibly kept from seceding from the Union, Steuart resigned his commission on 22 April 1861, and entered Confederate service as a captain in the cavalry. When the 1st Maryland cavalry formed that May, Steuart was named the regiment's lieutenant colonel. In July, after fighting at First Manassas, Steuart was promoted to colonel and regimental commander. He was promoted to brigadier general in early March 1862 and commanded a brigade in Richard S. Ewell's division during "Stonewall" Jackson's Shenandoah Valley campaign.

On 8 June 1862 Steuart was severely wounded at Cross Keys and would not return to the Confederate army until the following May. When he did return, he was given command of a brigade in Edward Johnson's division. Steuart was nicknamed "Maryland" because of his devotion. In mid-June 1863 when the Army of Northern Virginia crossed into Maryland on its way to Gettysburg, Steuart jumped off his horse, kissed his native soil and stood on his head.

He led the brigade at Gettysburg, during the Wilderness and at Spotsylvania where he along with his division commander, Johnson, were captured in the Mule Shoe. Steuart refused to shake Winfield S. Hancock's hand who he knew from his days in the US Army and snapped at a major who offered him a horse to ride to the rear. Steuart was sent to Charleston, South Carolina and was eventually exchanged in the summer of 1864. He commanded a brigade in George Pickett's division during the Petersburg campaign, at Five Forks, and at Sayler's Creek before surrendering with the army at Appomattox.

He returned to Maryland, where he farmed and served as commander of the Maryland division of the United Confederate Veterans. He died at the age of 75 on 22 November 1903 at South River, Maryland. He is buried in Green Mount Cemetery in Baltimore along with several other Confederate generals including Joseph Eggleston Johnson. John Wilkes Booth, the assassin of Abraham Lincoln, along with a couple conspirators are also buried in Green Mount.

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