Otho French Strahl

Monument: Find-a-Grave

Otho French Strahl was born on June 3, 1831 at McConnelsville, Morgan County, Ohio. He attended Ohio Wesleyan University at Delaware with the future Confederate brigadier, Daniel H. Reynolds. He later studied law with Reynolds at Somerville, Tennessee, and was admitted to the bar in 1858. At the outbreak of the Civil War he was practicing in Dyersburg. Entering Confederate service as a captain of the 4th Tennessee Volunteer Infantry in May 1861, Strahl was promoted lieutenant colonel early the following year. He fought at Shiloh and Murfreesboro, and was promoted to colonel in January 1863. On July 28, 1863 he was further promoted to brigadier general and assigned to the command of a brigade in Cheatham's division of Polk's corps, which he led with marked gallantry at Chickamauga. In the Chattanooga campaign his command was in A. P. Stewart's division of Breckinridge's corps. During the Atlanta campaign Strahl's brigade was again under Cheatham in Hardee's corps, and continued under Cheatham (in John C. Brown's division) during Hood's invasion of Tennessee. At the bitter, hand-to-hand struggle of Franklin, on November 30, 1864, General Strahl was one of six Confederate general officers who were mortally wounded. Standing in the ditch outside the Federal works, he was handing up guns to his riflemen posted to fire down into the enemy on the inside when he was struck. His last words, in answer to the question of one of his men, were: "Keep on firing." First buried at St. John's Church, Ashwood, Tennessee, his remains were removed to Dyersburg about 1900.

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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