It was some dark days in American history… The Civil War.
When neighbors, one-time friends and family killed each other over some causes we would all like to erase from our minds:
- Slavery and the economics surrounding it.
- State’s rights.
- And territorial expansion.
There is a common theme in the United States as of late to try to erase all memories of any who fought on the losing side… The Confederates.
I must say that, in my opinion, this is utter foolishness.
These Southern folk were simply fighting for something they believed in. And it would probably be safe to say that nearly all of us have fought, argued or debated a belief only to discover in time that we were completely wrong.
Yes, slavery was and is wrong but…
They also were fighting for State’s rights and the rights to expand territories. Were these also wrong? The fact is, we elect State representatives to ensure the State has the right to run as the State’s citizens see fit. The Federal government should not overstep those boundaries.
But, enough rambling; my point is that the Confederate Army had some great men who were simply fighting for 1 cause that was wrong. We cannot erase that and we shall not erase their memory.
We must learn from their mistakes, failures and their victories!
One of the men I speak of is Confederate Cavalry General Thomas T. Munford. I am going to share 10 cool facts about this man.
In late March of 1831, Thomas Munford was born in Richmond, Virginia. His parents were Colonel George Wythe Munford and Lucy Singleton Taylor.
#2: VMI Graduate
In 1849, Thomas enrolled in the Virginia Military Institute and he graduated in 1852. Out of a class of 24, his rank was 14.
#3: After Graduating
After graduating from VMI, Thomas began farming in Virginia and also had a cotton plantation in Mississippi. Plus he met and wed Elizabeth Henrietta Tayloe.
#4: Not Truly A General
During the Civil War, Thomas Munford held the rank of Colonel. Toward the end of the war, he was an “acting” Brigadier General appointed by Fitzhugh Lee as Lee was appointed cavalry corps commander, but he had not been commissioned by the Confederate Congress.
The war ended before it could happen, but he has gone down in history as being a General.
#5: Mustered In
Munford was mustered in to the Confederate Army by Colonel Jubal Early and he was given the rank of Lieutenant Colonel with the 30th Virginia Volunteer Regiment.
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#6: Munford’s Movements Through The Confederate Army
The 30th was redesignated when J.E.B. Stuart took over the Confederate Cavalry. Munford was promoted to Colonel of the 2nd Virginia Cavalry. During the Shenandoah Valley Campaign, Munford served under “Stonewall” Jackson as Commander of a Cavalry Brigade. When Brigadier General Turner Ashby was killed, Munford commanded all of Jackson’s Cavalry.
The Battles Munford participated in were:
- First Battle of Manassas
- Battle of Cross Keys
- Battle of White Oak Swamp
- Second Battle of Manassas
- Battle of Mile Hill
- Battle of South Mountain
- Gettysburg Campaign
- Bristoe Campaign
- Battle of Wapping Heights
- Battle of Five Forks
- The Battle of High Bridge
- Battle of Sayler’s Creek
He was acting Brigadier General on the last 3 battles.
#8: Never Actually Surrendered
When General Muford realized Robert E. Lee was going to surrender, he led his troops away from the Army of North Virginia. He planned to go to North Carolina and meet up with general Joseph Johnston but learned he had also surrendered, so he dispersed his troops at Lynchburg, Virginia and went home.
Munford’s wife had died in 1863 while he was off fighting.
He remarried to his wife’s cousin, Emma Tayloe. Munford then worked as a cotton planter in Alabama. From there he went back to Virginia where he started planting cotton and then went into iron manufacturing and he was also a writer. He became Vice President of Lynchburg Iron, Steel & Mining Company.
Thomas Munford died at his son’s home in Uniontown, Alabama in 1918. He was 86 years old. He was buried in his native town of Lynchburg, Virginia.
General Thomas Munford was an excellent leader and any Confederate Army superior would have been happy to have him serving under them.
He deserved the title of General and may he RIP.
Leave all comments and questions below. Thank you.