Johnson Kelly Duncan

Headstone: Find-a-Grave

Johnson Kelly Duncan was born at York, Pennsylvania, March 19, 1827, and was graduated from West Point in the class of 1849. After service in Florida against the Seminoles and in the Northwest, where he helped to explore a route for the Northern Pacific Railroad, he resigned his army commission in 1855 to become superintendent of government construction in New Orleans. In 1861 he was chief engineer of the Board of Public Works of Louisiana. His residence and associations prompted him to cast his lot with the South, and he was soon commissioned colonel of artillery and placed in command of the coast defenses in and around New Orleans, including Forts Jackson and St. Philip. He was promoted to brigadier general on January 7, 1862. After a stubborn defense, Duncan was forced to capitulate in April to the invading Federal fleet; he was captured and later exchanged. Upon his release he was appointed chief of staff to General Bragg, with whom he served but a few months before his death from fever at Knoxville, Tennessee, December 18, 1862. Perhaps because Knoxville was a Union stronghold, his remains were interred in the McGavock Cemetery at Franklin, Tennessee.

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