Edmund Winston Pettus

Reference: Find-a-Grave

Edmund Winston Pettus, a native of Alabama, was born in Limestone County, July 6, 1821. He was educated at Clinton College, Smith County, Tennessee. He read law at Tuscumbia, and was admitted to practice in 1842, following which he settled in Gainesville. He served as solicitor of his district, and later as judge of the seventh circuit. He removed to Cahaba in 1858, and was living there in 1861. At this time he was sent as a commissioner of the state to Mississippi, of which his brother, John J. Pettus, was governor. He aided in the recruitment of the 20th Alabama, and was elected its major, and in October 1861, lieutenant colonel. Pettus was a fearless and dogged fighter and distinguished himself on many fields in the western theatre of war. Captured at Vicksburg and exchanged, he became colonel of the 20th after the concurrent promotion and death of General Garrott. On September 18, 1863, he was himself promoted brigadier general. Thereafter, he followed with conspicuous bravery every forlorn hope which the Confederacy offered, from Chattanooga to Bentonville, including the invasion of Tennessee by Hood. He was wounded in the Carolinas campaign. At the close of the war General Pettus returned to Alabama and took up residence at Selma. He resumed his law practice, and became prominent in the Democratic affairs of the state. He nevertheless did not offer for public office until 1896, when he was elected to the United States Senate, and was re-elected in 1902. He served until his death, July 27, 1907, at Hot Springs, North Carolina— the last of the Confederate brigadiers to sit in the upper house of the national Congress. He is buried in Selma.

Ref: Generals in Gray, Lives of the Confederate Commanders by Ezra J. Warner.  Printed by Louisiana State University Press, Baton Rouge and London.

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