William Dorsey Pender
(1834-1863)

Major General

Reference: Find-a-Grave

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Reference: Alabama Department of Archives & History. Custodian of the original pictures. Confederate Officers photo album.  http://www.archives.alabama.gov/conoffalb/index.html

William Dorsey Pender was born in Edgecomb County, North Carolina, on February 6, 1834. He received his early education in the common schools of the county, and worked as a clerk in his brother's store before receiving an appointment to West Point at the age of sixteen. Graduated in the class of 1854, his old army service was mainly on the Pacific coast, during which he was involved in a number of Indian skirmishes. Pender resigned his 1st lieutenant's commission on March 21, 1861, and entered the Confederate Army as colonel of the 3rd (later 13th) North Carolina. His regiment was first attached to Whiting's brigade of G. W. Smith's division. He was promoted brigadier general for gallant service at Seven Pines, to rank from June 3, 1862, and given command of a brigade in A. P. Hill's division. This he ably led from the Seven Days to Chancellorsville, and was three times wounded. Promoted major general on May 27, 1863, he led his division to Gettysburg, where on the second day he was wounded in the leg by a fragment of shell. On the long road back to Staunton, Virginia, infection set in, which necessitated amputation on his arrival there.  From this operation he failed to rally, dying in Staunton on July 18. At the time he was perhaps the most outstanding of the younger general officers of the army. His body was taken to North Carolina and buried in the yard of Calvary Church at Tarboro.

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