Charles K. Graham

Last updated
Charles Kinnaird Graham
Charles Kinnaird Graham -1096341609.jpg
Born(1824-06-03)June 3, 1824
New York City, New York
DiedApril 15, 1889(1889-04-15) (aged 64)
Lakewood, New Jersey
Place of burial
Allegiance United States of America
Service/branch United States Navy
United States Army
Union Army
Years of service1841–1848 (Navy)
1861–1865 (Army)
Rank USN Ensign rank insignia.jpg Midshipman (Navy)
Union Army brigadier general rank insignia.svg Brigadier General (Army)
Union Army major general rank insignia.svg Brevet Major General
Commands held 74th New York Infantry
2nd Brigade, 3rd Division, III Corps
1st Brigade, 1st Division, III Corps
3rd Division, III Corps (temporary)
Naval Brigade, XIII Corps
Battles/wars Mexican–American War
American Civil War

Charles Kinnaird Graham (June 3, 1824 – April 15, 1889) [1] was a sailor in the antebellum United States Navy, attorney, and later a brigadier general in the Union Army during the American Civil War. As a civil engineer, he helped plan and lay out Central Park in New York City.

United States Navy Naval warfare branch of the United States Armed Forces

The United States Navy (USN) is the naval warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces and one of the seven uniformed services of the United States. It is the largest and most capable navy in the world and it has been estimated that in terms of tonnage of its active battle fleet alone, it is larger than the next 13 navies combined, which includes 11 U.S. allies or partner nations. With the highest combined battle fleet tonnage and the world's largest aircraft carrier fleet, with eleven in service, and two new carriers under construction. With 319,421 personnel on active duty and 99,616 in the Ready Reserve, the U.S. Navy is the third largest of the U.S. military service branches in terms of personnel. It has 282 deployable combat vessels and more than 3,700 operational aircraft as of March 2018, making it the third-largest air force in the world, after the United States Air Force and the United States Army.

Brigadier general (United States) one-star general officer in the United States Army, Air Force, and Marine Corps

In the United States Armed Forces, brigadier general is a one-star general officer with the pay grade of O-7 in the U.S. Army, U.S. Marine Corps, and U.S. Air Force. Brigadier general ranks above a colonel and below major general. The rank of brigadier general is equivalent to the rank of rear admiral in the other uniformed services. The NATO equivalent is OF-6.

Union Army Land force that fought for the Union during the American Civil War

During the American Civil War, the Union Army referred to the United States Army, the land force that fought to preserve the Union of the collective states. Also known as the Federal Army, it proved essential to the preservation of the United States as a working, viable republic.


Early years and education

Graham was born in New York City. He entered the Navy in October 1841, at the age of 17 and served as a midshipman in the Gulf of Mexico during the Mexican–American War, resigning his commission in May 1848. [1] Later he studied engineering and was for several years after 1857 constructing engineer of the Brooklyn Navy Yard. During this time he was a major, lieutenant colonel and, finally, colonel in the New York Militia. [1]

New York City Largest city in the United States

The City of New York, usually called either New York City (NYC) or simply New York (NY), is the most populous city in the United States. With an estimated 2018 population of 8,398,748 distributed over a land area of about 302.6 square miles (784 km2), New York is also the most densely populated major city in the United States. Located at the southern tip of the state of New York, the city is the center of the New York metropolitan area, the largest metropolitan area in the world by urban landmass and one of the world's most populous megacities, with an estimated 19,979,477 people in its 2018 Metropolitan Statistical Area and 22,679,948 residents in its Combined Statistical Area. A global power city, New York City has been described as the cultural, financial, and media capital of the world, and exerts a significant impact upon commerce, entertainment, research, technology, education, politics, tourism, art, fashion, and sports. The city's fast pace has inspired the term New York minute. Home to the headquarters of the United Nations, New York is an important center for international diplomacy.

A midshipman is an officer of the junior-most rank, in the Royal Navy, United States Navy, and many Commonwealth navies. Commonwealth countries which use the rank include Canada, Australia, Bangladesh, Namibia, New Zealand, South Africa, India, Pakistan, Singapore, Sri Lanka, and Kenya.

Gulf of Mexico An Atlantic Ocean basin extending into southern North America

The Gulf of Mexico is an ocean basin and a marginal sea of the Atlantic Ocean, largely surrounded by the North American continent. It is bounded on the northeast, north and northwest by the Gulf Coast of the United States, on the southwest and south by Mexico, and on the southeast by Cuba. The U.S. states of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida border the Gulf on the north, which are often referred to as the "Third Coast", in comparison with the U.S. Atlantic and Pacific coasts.

Civil War

At the outbreak of the American Civil War, on May 26, 1861, he entered the Union Army as colonel of the 74th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment, [1] of one of the regiments of the "Excelsior Brigade." He resigned on April 10, 1862 but was restored to the colonelcy of the regiment during the Peninsula Campaign on May 26, 1862. [1] On November 9, 1862 he was appointed brigadier general of volunteers to rank from November 29, 1862 [2] and assumed command of the 2nd Brigade, 3rd Division, III Corps. At the Battle of Chancellorsville he commanded the 1st Brigade, 1st Division, III Corps. Upon the mortal wounding of Amiel W. Whipple, Graham assumed command of the 3rd Division, III Corps on the last day of the battle, May 4, 1863, through June 20, 1863. [1] He returned to command the 1st Brigade, 1st Division in June during the Gettysburg Campaign. During the Battle of Gettysburg, Graham's brigade defended the Union position along the Emmitsburg Road, particularly the area of the Sherfy peach orchard. He was wounded in the hip and shoulders on July 2 and taken prisoner by the Confederates. [1] He was sent to a prison camp in Richmond until he was exchanged (for James L. Kemper) on September 19, 1863. [1]

American Civil War Civil war in the United States from 1861 to 1865

The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States from 1861 to 1865, between the North (Union) and the South (Confederacy). The most studied and written about episode in U.S. history, the Civil War began primarily as a result of the long-standing controversy over the enslavement of black people. War broke out in April 1861 when secessionist forces attacked Fort Sumter in South Carolina shortly after Abraham Lincoln had been inaugurated as the President of the United States. The loyalists of the Union in the North, which also included some geographically western and southern states, proclaimed support for the Constitution. They faced secessionists of the Confederate States in the South, who advocated for states' rights to uphold slavery.

Colonel (United States) Military rank of the United States

In the United States Army, Marine Corps, and Air Force, colonel is the most senior field grade military officer rank, immediately above the rank of lieutenant colonel and immediately below the rank of brigadier general. It is equivalent to the naval rank of captain in the other uniformed services. The pay grade for colonel is O-6.

74th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment

The 74th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment was a Union regiment recruited in 1861, during the American Civil War. The regiment was part of Sickles' Excelsior Brigade and their first commander was sailor and engineer Col. Charles K. Graham. The regiment participated in the Peninsula Campaign of 1862 and was particularly noted for its part at the Battle of Williamsburg. It was also present at the battles of Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg and the Overland Campaign.

Upon his recovery, he was assigned by Major General Benjamin Butler to the command of a gunboat flotilla on the James River labeled the "Naval Brigade" and was attached to the XVIII Corps, Army of the James from April 28, 1864 to February 17, 1865. [1] Graham led the Naval Brigade during the First Battle of Fort Fisher. When the Union forces of the First Fort Fisher expedition returned to Virginia, Graham commanded the defenses of Bermuda Hundred, February 19, 1865 to March 19, 1865, and later the garrison of Norfolk, Virginia from March 19, 1865 to July 1865. [1] He was mustered out of the volunteers on August 24, 1865. [1]

In the United States Army, United States Marine Corps, and United States Air Force, major general is a two-star general-officer rank, with the pay grade of O-8. Major general ranks above brigadier general and below lieutenant general. A major general typically commands division-sized units of 10,000 to 15,000 soldiers. Major general is equivalent to the two-star rank of rear admiral in the United States Navy and United States Coast Guard, and is the highest-permanent rank during peacetime in the uniformed-services. Higher ranks are technically-temporary ranks linked to specific positions, although virtually all officers promoted to those ranks are approved to retire at their highest earned rank.

Gunboat naval watercraft designed for bombardment of coastal targets

A gunboat is a naval watercraft designed for the express purpose of carrying one or more guns to bombard coastal targets, as opposed to those military craft designed for naval warfare, or for ferrying troops or supplies.

XVIII Corps (Union Army) 1862-1864 Union Army formation

XVIII Corps was a North Carolina corps of the Union Army during the American Civil War.

On January 13, 1866, President Andrew Johnson nominated Graham for appointment to the grade of brevet major general of volunteers, to rank from March 13, 1865, and the United States Senate confirmed the appointment on March 12, 1866. [3]

President of the United States Head of state and of government of the United States

The president of the United States (POTUS) is the head of state and head of government of the United States of America. The president directs the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces.

Andrew Johnson 17th president of the United States

Andrew Johnson was the 17th president of the United States, serving from 1865 to 1869. Johnson assumed the presidency as he was vice president of the United States at the time of the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. A Democrat who ran with Lincoln on the National Union ticket, Johnson came to office as the Civil War concluded. He favored quick restoration of the seceded states to the Union. His plans did not give protection to the former slaves; he came into conflict with the Republican-dominated Congress, culminating in his impeachment by the House of Representatives. He was acquitted in the Senate by one vote. Johnson's main accomplishment as president is the Alaska purchase.

In many of the world's military establishments, a brevet was a warrant giving a commissioned officer a higher rank title as a reward for gallantry or meritorious conduct but without conferring the authority, precedence, or pay of real rank. An officer so promoted was referred to as being brevetted. The promotion would be noted in the officer's title.

Postbellum career

After the war, Graham returned to New York and resumed the practice of civil engineering. From 1878 to 1883, he was surveyor of the port of New York.

He died of pneumonia in Lakewood, New Jersey, April 15, 1889, and is buried in Woodlawn Cemetery, The Bronx, New York City. [1]

Pneumonia Infection of the lungs

Pneumonia is an inflammatory condition of the lung affecting primarily the small air sacs known as alveoli. Typically symptoms include some combination of productive or dry cough, chest pain, fever, and trouble breathing. Severity is variable.

The Bronx Borough in New York City and county in New York, United States

The Bronx is the northernmost of the five boroughs of New York City, in the U.S. state of New York. It is south of Westchester County; northeast and east of Manhattan, across the Harlem River; and north of Queens, across the East River. Since 1914, the borough has had the same boundaries as Bronx County, the third-most densely populated county in the United States.

See also


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Eicher, John H., and David J. Eicher, Civil War High Commands. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2001. ISBN   978-0-8047-3641-1. p. 261.
  2. Eicher, 2001, p. 722.
  3. Eicher, 2001, p. 755.

Related Research Articles

Hiram Berdan Union Army General

Hiram Berdan was an American engineer, inventor and military officer, world-renowned marksman, and guiding force behind and commanding colonel of the famed United States Volunteer Sharpshooter Regiments during the American Civil War. He was the inventor of the Berdan rifle, the Berdan centerfire primer and numerous other weapons and accessories.

George Henry Gordon Union Army General

George Henry Gordon was an American lawyer and a Union general in the American Civil War.

Ellis Spear Union Army general

Ellis Spear was an officer in the 20th Maine Volunteer Infantry Regiment of the Union Army during the American Civil War. On April 10, 1866, the United States Senate confirmed President Andrew Johnson's February 24, 1866 nomination of Spear for appointment to the grade of brevet brigadier general to rank from April 9, 1865. He was United States Commissioner of Patents in 1877-1878.

Thomas Devin Union Army general

Thomas Casimer Devin was a United States Army officer and general. He commanded Union cavalry during the American Civil War and during the Indian Wars.

George Nelson Morgan was a Union Army officer in the American Civil War.

Roy Stone Union Army general

Roy Stone was a Union Army officer during the American Civil War. He is most noted for his stubborn defense of the McPherson Farm during the Battle of Gettysburg. He later served as a general in the Spanish–American War

Innis N. Palmer Union army general in the American Civil War

Innis Newton Palmer was a career officer in the United States Army, serving in the Mexican–American War, the Civil War, and on the Western frontier.

Joseph Bradford Carr Union Army general

Joseph Bradford Carr was a general in the Union Army during the American Civil War.

Robert Cowdin Union Army general

Robert Cowdin was a businessman, a field officer in the Union Army during the American Civil War and a local politician in Massachusetts. Cowdin was colonel of the 1st Massachusetts Infantry and served in several major battles early in the war. He was appointed brigadier general of volunteers September 26, 1862 and he then commanded a brigade in the defenses of Washington until March 1863. He did not become a full brigadier general because his appointment expired by law March 4, 1862 when the U.S. Senate adjourned without confirming it. His grade reverted to colonel but after being relieved of command of the brigade, he returned home and saw no further service.

George Childs Burling was a United States Union Army officer during the American Civil War, serving mostly as colonel and commander of the 6th New Jersey Volunteer Infantry. Burling was born in Burlington County, New Jersey, raised on his father's farm and educated at a private school in Norristown, Pennsylvania. He was a coal merchant and a militia officer before the war. Burling's militia company was mustered into the volunteer service for a three-month term in July 1861, but it became company F of the 6th New Jersey with a three-year enlistment on September 9, 1861. Burling became the regiment's major on March 19, 1862 and lieutenant colonel on May 7 of that year. Burling was wounded at the Second Battle of Bull Run in August 1862.

Thomas Worcester Hyde was a Union Army colonel who subsequently received brevets of brigadier general of volunteers and major general of volunteers in the American Civil War, a state senator from Maine, and the founder of Bath Iron Works, one of the major shipyards in the United States. He wrote two books about his experiences during the war and at the Battle of Gettysburg.

Charles Candy was a career soldier in the United States Army who served as an officer in the volunteer Union Army during the American Civil War. He commanded an Ohio regiment and, frequently, a brigade, during the war, and played a role in the defense of Culp's Hill during the July 1863 Battle of Gettysburg.

Samuel Perkins Spear was an American soldier who saw combat in the Seminole Wars, the Mexican–American War, and the Civil War.

John Dunlap Stevenson was an American attorney, politician, and soldier in the U.S. Army in two wars. He was a brigadier general of volunteers during the American Civil War. In 1866 he was nominated and confirmed for appointment as brevet major general of volunteers.

John Elisha Phelps was a Union Army officer during the American Civil War.

John I. Curtin Union Army general

John Irvin Curtin was a cousin of Pennsylvania governor Andrew Gregg Curtin. He led a regiment and then a brigade in the American Civil War.

Alexander Chambers American general

Alexander Chambers was a US Army officer, who became a general during the American Civil War.

Ansel Dyer Wass was a Union Army officer during the American Civil War. Wass was born in Addison, Maine on November 12, 1832.

Ulysses Doubleday was a Union Army colonel during the American Civil War. In 1866 he was nominated and confirmed for appointment to the grade of brevet brigadier general of volunteers, to rank from March 13, 1865.

Adrian Rowe Root was an American commission merchant, warehouse executive, newspaper editor and military officer in the Union Army during the American Civil War. He served as brigade commander for much of the war but his highest actual substantive grade was colonel. His March 2, 1865 nomination for appointment as brevet brigadier general of volunteers to rank from March 2, 1865, was confirmed by the United States Senate on March 9, 1865. His January 13, 1866 nomination for appointment as a brevet major general of volunteers, to rank from March 13, 1865, was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on March 12, 1866.