Matt Whitaker Ransom
Matt Whitaker Ransom, an elder brother of General Robert Ransom, was born in Warren County, North Carolina, October 8, 1826. He was graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1847, and having studied law in his senior year, was at once admitted to the bar. A Whig Presidential Elector in 1852, he represented his county in the lower house of the legislature from 1858 to 1861. In the latter year he was chosen one of three commissioners from North Carolina to the Confederate government at Montgomery. Enlisting as a private, he was almost immediately commissioned lieutenant colonel of the 1st North Carolina state troops, and subsequently colonel of the 35th North Carolina Infantry. This regiment was a part of his brother's brigade, which he later commanded. His rank of brigadier general dated from June 13, 1863. General Ransom took part in the battles of Seven Pines, the Seven Days, Sharpsburg, Fredericksburg, Plymouth, Weldon, Suffolk, and the siege of Petersburg. He was three times wounded. He finally surrendered his command at Appomattox, and at the close of the war, returned to North Carolina and resumed his law business. He meantime farmed his wife's plantation on Roanoke River. Elected to the United States Senate in 1872, he served continuously until 1895, at which time he was appointed minister to Mexico by President Cleveland. He died near Garysburg, North Carolina, October 8, 1904, and is buried on his plantation in Northampton County.
Ref: Generals in Gray, Lives of the Confederate Commanders by Ezra J. Warner. Printed by Louisiana State University Press, Baton Rouge and London.