Miles, Nelson Appleton, 1839-1925

Alternative names
Dates:
Birth 1839-08-08
Death 1925-05-15
English

Biographical notes:

Nelson Appleton Miles (b. Aug. 8, 1839, Westminster, Massachusetts-d. 1925, Washington, D.C.), Lieutenant General in the U.S. Army, was self-educated and began his military career in 1861 with the Massachusetts Volunteers. He rose swiftly in the ranks, was wounded four times, and was a veteran of almost all major battles of the Army of the Potomac. He was promoted to Major General of Volunteers in October 1865 at the age of 26 and gained a commission in the post-war regular army. He was later active on the Western frontier during hostilities with the Indians, including victories against the Cheyenne and Comanche, and succeeded in capturing the elusive Apache leader, Geronimo. In 1895 he became the Army's Commander-in-Chief, and in 1901 was promoted to Lieutenant General. He retired in 1903.

From the description of Miles, Nelson Appleton, 1839-1925 (U.S. National Archives and Records Administration). naId: 10582767

Soldier who fought in every important Civil War battle, except one, of the Army of the Potomac, and later participated in many campaigns against the Indians west of the Mississippi.

From the description of General order no. 7 : regulating treatment of state prisoner Jefferson Davis, 1866 May 14. (Buffalo History Museum). WorldCat record id: 34005107

Union Army general; formerly a first lieutenant in the 22nd Massachusetts Volunteers

From the description of Civil War letter, 1865 Feb. 1. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70978912

American general.

From the description of Typewritten letter signed : Washington, to J.M. Dalzell, 1898 Apr. 12. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270640705

George Armstrong Custer was a famous cavalry officer during the Civil War and the Indian wars of the 1860s and 1870s. Elizabeth Bacon Custer, his wife, was the author of several works about Army life on the plains. After the death of her husband, she dedicated her life to defending his honor.

From the guide to the George A. and Elizabeth B. Custer papers, 1857-1929, (L. Tom Perry Special Collections)

American General and cavalry leader. He served in the Civil War and in the campaigns against the American Indians.

From the description of Letters, 1878-1898. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122702249

Army officer.

From the description of Miles-Cameron family papers, 1860-1945. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 71070037

Born to Daniel Miles and Mary Curtis near Westminster, Massachusetts, Nelson Appleton Miles (1839-1925) was educated at John R. Galt’s academy before working as a store clerk in Boston. During the Civil War, he enlisted in the 22nd Massachusetts Volunteer Regiment as a first lieutenant and was eventually promoted to be an aide-de-camp to General Oliver Otis Howard. In 1865, Miles was promoted to major general and received a medal of honor for gallantry. Following the war, he was assigned to Fort Monroe, Virginia, and managed the Freedmen’s Bureau. In 1868, Miles married Mary Hoyt Sherman, with whom he had two children. A year later, he was appointed a colonel in the 5th Infantry Regiment in the U. S. Army, later leading an expedition against Native Americans in the Texas Panhandle in 1874, and fighting in the Red River War. Miles later defeated Crazy Horse as well as the Nez Percé tribe in 1877. After advancing to the position of brigadier general three years later, he instigated Geronimo’s defeat in 1886 and became major general of the Division of the Missouri in 1889. Miles was promoted to general-in-chief in 1895, commanding the army during the Spanish-American War in 1898.

Source:

Steinbach, Robert H. Miles, Nelson Appleton. Handbook of Texas Online . Accessed July 14, 2011. http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fmi77 .

From the guide to the Miles, Nelson A. Items 69-073., 1874, undated, (Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin)

Officer in the U.S. Army. Entered Union Army during Civil War (1861-1865) as a Lieutenant, commanding company of Massachusetts volunteers. Ended war as Brevet Major General in command of 26,000 troops. Received regular commission as a Colonel in the U.S. Army in 1865, given command of 5th Infantry in the Western states.

Defeated the Cheyenne, Kiowa and Commanche (1874-1875); successfully fought against the Sioux, led by Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse (1876-1880); overtook the Nez Perce and forced their surrender (1877); defeated the Apache under Geronimo (1886); and forced the final surrender of the Sioux at Wounded Knee, South Dakota (1890-1891). Promoted to Brigadier General in 1880; Major General in 1890; and Liutenant General in 1901. Appointed commander of the Army in 1895. Retired from active duty in 1903.

From the description of Letters, 1875-1898. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 145435189

Born to Daniel Miles and Mary Curtis near Westminster, Massachusetts, Nelson Appleton Miles (1839-1925) was educated at John R. Galt's academy before working as a store clerk in Boston.

During the Civil War, he enlisted in the 22nd Massachusetts Volunteer Regiment as a first lieutenant and was eventually promoted to be an aide-de-camp to General Oliver Otis Howard. In 1865, Miles was promoted to major general and received a medal of honor for gallantry. Following the war, he was assigned to Fort Monroe, Virginia, and managed the Freedmen's Bureau. In 1868, Miles married Mary Hoyt Sherman, with whom he had two children. A year later, he was appointed a colonel in the 5th Infantry Regiment in the U. S. Army, later leading an expedition against Native Americans in the Texas Panhandle in 1874, and fighting in the Red River War. Miles later defeated Crazy Horse as well as the Nez Percé tribe in 1877. After advancing to the position of brigadier general three years later, he instigated Geronimo's defeat in 1886 and became major general of the Division of the Missouri in 1889. Miles was promoted to general-in-chief in 1895, commanding the army during the Spanish-American War in 1898.

From the description of Miles, Nelson A., Items, 1874, undated (University of Texas Libraries). WorldCat record id: 761089941

Biographical Note

Elizabeth Cameron

  • 1857: Born, Cleveland, Ohio
  • 1878: Married J. D. Cameron (died 1918)
  • 1881: Began friendship with Henry Adams
  • 1886: Daughter Martha Cameron born (died 1918)
  • 1898: Began spending most of her time in Europe while estranged from husband
  • 1909: Daughter Martha married British diplomat Ronald Lindsay; Elizabeth Cameron moved to Europe
  • 1944, Aug. 17: Died in England

J. D. Cameron

  • 1833, May 14: Born, Middletown, Pa..
  • 1852: Graduated, Princeton College (now Princeton University), Princeton, N.J.
  • 1856: Married Mary McCormick
  • 1863 - 1874 : President, Northern Central Railway
  • 1876 - 1877 : Secretary of war
  • 1877 - 1897 : United States senator from Pennsylvania
  • 1878: Married Elizabeth Sherman (died 1944)
  • 1918, Aug. 30: Died, Lancaster County, Pa.

Nelson Appleton Miles

  • 1839, Aug. 8: Born, Westminster, Mass.
  • 1861 - 1865 : Served in Union Army during the Civil War; finished war as brigadier general of volunteers
  • 1865 - 1866 : Commander, Fortress Monroe during incarceration of former Confederate President Jefferson Davis
  • 1866: Mustered out of volunteer army; commissioned a colonel in Regular Army
  • 1867 - 1869 : Assistant commissioner, North Carolina, for Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen and Abandoned Lands (“Freedmen's Bureau”)
  • 1868: Married Mary Hoyt Sherman (died 1904)
  • 1869: Daughter Cecilia born in Cleveland, Ohio
  • 1874 - 1890 : Participated in Indian Wars
  • 1882: Son Sherman born in Washington, D.C.
  • 1892: Awarded Medal of Honor for gallantry at Chancellorsville
  • 1894: Commanded federal forces in Chicago, Ill. during Pullman Railway Strike
  • 1895: Commanding general, United States Army
  • 1896: Published Personal Recollections of Observations of General Nelson A. Miles. Chicago: Werner Co.
  • 1903: Retired from army
  • 1911: Published Serving the Republic: Memoirs of the Civil and Military Life of Nelson A. Miles. New York and London: Harper & Brothers.
  • 1925, May 15: Died, Washington, D.C.

Sherman Miles

  • 1882, Dec. 5: Born, Washington, D.C.
  • 1905: Graduated, United States Military Academy, West Point, N.Y.
  • 1909: Married Yulee Noble (died 1953)
  • 1914 - 1916 : Military attaché to Russia
  • 1938: Commanding officer, Fort Sill, Okla.
  • 1939: Military attaché, London, England
  • 1941: Chief, Military Intelligence Division
  • 1942: Commander, First Service Command, Boston, Mass.
  • 1945: Retired from army as major general
  • 1947 - 1952 : Served in Massachusetts House of Representatives
  • 1954: Married Edith Lawrence Coolidge (died 1975)
  • 1966, Oct. 7: Died, Beverly, Mass.

From the guide to the Miles-Cameron Families Correspondence, 1661-1956, (bulk 1862-1944), (Manuscript Division Library of Congress)

Officer in the U.S. Army. Entered Union Army during Civil War (1861-1865) as a Lieutenant, commanding company of Massachusetts volunteers. Ended war as Brevet Major General in command of 26,000 troops. Received regular commission as a Colonel in the U.S. Army in 1865, given command of 5th Infantry in the Western states.

Defeated the Cheyenne, Kiowa and Commanche (1874-1875); successfully fought against the Sioux, led by Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse (1876-1880); overtook the Nez Perce and forced their surrender (1877); defeated the Apache under Geronimo (1886); and forced the final surrender of the Sioux at Wounded Knee, South Dakota (1890-1891). Promoted to Brigadier General in 1880; Major General in 1890; and Liutenant General in 1901. Appointed commander of the Army in 1895. Retired from active duty in 1903.

From the guide to the Nelson Appleton Miles letters, 1875-1898, (L. Tom Perry Special Collections)

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Subjects:

  • Military camps--Texas--Canadian
  • Military
  • Dakota Indians--Wars, 1876--Sources
  • Indians of North America
  • Dakota Indians
  • Apache Indians
  • Generals--History--19th century
  • Wounded Knee Massacre, S.D., 1890
  • Soldiers--Training of
  • Spanish--American War, 1898
  • Politics, Government, and Law
  • Politicians--United States--Correspondence
  • Natchez Indians
  • Little Bighorn, Battle of the, Mont., 1876--Sources
  • Indians of North America--Wars--West (U.S.)
  • Diplomats--Correspondence
  • Armed Forces--Officers--Correspondence
  • Comanche Indians--Wars
  • Military camps
  • Generals--Correspondence
  • Indians of North America--Government relations--1869-1934
  • Diplomats--United States--Correspondence
  • Dakota Indians--Wars, 1876
  • Theater 19th century
  • Soldiers
  • Indians of North America--Wars--1866-1895
  • Indians of North America--Wars--1866-1895--Sources
  • Politicians--Correspondence
  • Wild west shows--West (U.S.)

Occupations:

  • Generals--United States
  • Soldiers--United States
  • Army officers

Places:

  • Texas (as recorded)
  • Pine Ridge Indian Reservation (S.D.) (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • West (U.S.) (as recorded)
  • Philippines (as recorded)
  • Canadian (Tex.) (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Pine Ridge Indian Reservation (S.D.) (as recorded)
  • Canadian (Tex.) (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • United States, Army (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • England (as recorded)
  • Massachusetts (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Washington (D.C.) (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Arizona (as recorded)