Victor Jean Baptiste Girardey

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Victor Jean Baptiste Girardey, a native of France, was born on June 26, 1837, in Lauw, Department of Haut-Rhin. When the boy was five years of age the family emigrated to the United States and settled in Augusta, Georgia. His father died soon after, and upon the death of his mother, he was left an orphan at the age of sixteen. He spent the next few years in New Orleans completing his education. He married there in 1858 a Louisianian of French descent and was presumably living in Augusta in 1861, although the records exhibit that he enlisted in Louisiana. His first appointment was that of 1st lieutenant and aide-decamp from the state of Louisiana October 12, 1861. However, he was captain and assistant adjutant general on the staff of General A. R. Wright in the Seven Days battles, and was nominated to the Senate at that grade as being from the state of Georgia. Girardey continued to serve on Wright's staff until May 21, 1864, and was repeatedly commended for his skill, bravery, and efficiency. He was transferred to the divisional staff of General Mahone in the same capacity. So outstanding was his performance at the battle of the Crater, in organizing and timing Mahone's counterattack after the explosion of the Federal mine, that four days later he was jumped to the grade of brigadier general with temporary rank from July 30. This was the only instance in the Confederate Army of such a promotion. On August 16, 1864, only thirteen days after he had received his commission, while commanding the brigade of which he had formerly been adjutant, General Girardey was killed near Fussell's Mill on the Darbytown Road, while resisting a Federal assault on the east end of the Richmond defenses. He is buried in Augusta.

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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.