Series: Characters in the story Chronicles of War
Little is recorded of Colonel Smith. It is believed that he was born in Vermont around 1819. At some point he took up residence in Clinton, IA. When Iowa’s 26th Volunteer Infantry was formed in the summer of 1862, Colonel Smith was given command–a post he served faithfully until January of 1865, when he resigned his commission. Colonel Smith went to work for the Des Moines Valley Railroad for many years after the war.
Very little exists today in the way of biographical information on Milo Smith. The picture of him in this post, apparently taken after the war, was found in a history of Iowa.
Chronicles of War: the podcast has reached twenty… episodes, that is. Still a long, long way to go. The research for the book has been broad, spanning Iowan history, the Civil War, the many historical characters and places, not to mention the family history involved. The writing has been so much fun, creating and adding meat to the historical bones.
Thanks for tuning in and for helping get the word out. The podcast’s popularity through iTunes continues to amaze me. 11,000 downloads from many countries, on many continents. I’m honored to have so many listening to my story. Twenty episodes in the bag–and now, on with the rest of the story!
Series: Characters in the story Chronicles of War.
One of the officers Job Trites encountered was the leader of 4th Iowa Infantry, Colonel James Alexander Williamson.
Born in Kentucky, Williamson moved to Iowa at the age of 15. Eventually he enrolled as a law student and was admitted to the bar. Just prior to the Civil War he was active in local politics. When the war broke out, he enlisted in Iowa’s 4th Infantry and served as a First Lieutenant. He was wounded at Pea Ridge and promoted to the rank of Colonel.
Williamson and the 4th Infantry spent the fall of 1862 on garrison duty at Helena, Arkansas. It was there that Job Trites first encountered the man, writing home of him to his wife Harriet, “a different breed of brass.” In the last days of December 1862, Colonel Williamson led his men into battle at Chickasaw Bayou–against “a superior force, strongly entrenched, and he held his ground even after all support had withdrawn.” Williamson was wounded again. For his bravery and service at Chickasaw, Williamson would eventually be awarded the Medal of Honor. Williamson continued in service to the Union, leading men at Vicksburg and then in battles at Chatanooga, Lookout Mountain and Atlanta. He retired a Brigadier General.
Williamson was observed to be a quiet man. He never spoke much of his home or family although men around him knew that they were very important to him. He was observed to be a man of quiet faith–able to quote a verse of scripture and recall a bible story with the best of them–yet never preachy. You can find much on this great leader by simply Googling his name.