Stephen M. Westmore

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Stephen M. Westmore was born in Charleston, South Carolina, on April 2, 1806, the son of Stephen West and Eleanore Screvan (Gilbert) Moore. His father, of an old Maryland-Virginia family, was a prominent banker; his two brothers were army surgeons, one of whom was future Confederate Surgeon General Samuel P. Moore. Born Stephen West Moore, he entered West Point in 1823 and graduated four years later, thirty-fourth in a class of thirty-eight. Commissioned first lieutenant in the 7th Infantry in 1827, after twenty years of routine army service, mostly in the Indian Territory, he had only risen to the rank of captain. Westmore commanded the post of Jefferson Barracks in New Orleans and led Company I of the 7th Infantry in Texas. On April 19, 1846, Westmore resigned his commission and returned to his New Orleans home. His obituary suggests that Westmore resigned after killing a fellow officer in a duel. By an act of legislature in 1850 he had his name changed to Westmore (he and a cousin of the same name were being confused). Working first as a clerk, Westmore was appointed Louisiana's adjutant and inspector general in 1853 by his old army friend Governor Paul Hebert, serving for two years. Subsequently he was register of conveyances for the city of New Orleans.

When the war started Westmore swiftly rose to high command in the Louisiana militia. On February 20, 1862, Governor Moore commissioned Westmore brigadier general of the 3rd Brigade of Louisiana Militia Volunteers. The brigade—1,104 strong—was mustered into Confederate service on March 1, 1862. This ninety-day unit was transferred to Confederate Major General Lovell's command to help defend New Orleans. The militia, poorly armed and supplied, could do little to stop the Union naval assault on that city and dispersed. Westmore himself was captured and paroled by the Unionists. Exchanged in October, 1862, the old soldier disappears from the OR of the war after this, though it appears he lived in occupied New Orleans for a time.

After the war the wealthy Westmore lived in retirement at his New Orleans home. It was said that Westmore, a member of the Metairie Racing Club, was "reckoned the best judge of horseflesh in the South." Racked with illness and pain in his later years, the general grew despondent. On February 4, 1896, General Westmore committed suicide by jumping into the Mississippi River near his home. He was buried in New Orleans.

General Westmore's command of a brigade of militia that served in a campaign qualifies him to be considered a Confederate general.

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Reference:  More Generals in Gray.  Bruce S. Allardice.  A companion volume to Generals in Gray.  Louisiana State University Press. Baton Rouge. LA.