Charles Davis Jameson


Compliments Find-a-grave

Charles Davis Jameson was born at Orono, Maine, on February 24, 1827, before Old Town was set off from Orono in 1840. After securing the rudiments of an education, he went into the lumber business, and it is said became one of the largest manufacturers and shippers on the Penobscot River. In the antebellum years he rose to the command of a militia regiment, and when the Civil War broke out, he was elected colonel of the 2nd Maine, which was originally enlisted for three months but subsequently mustered in for service of two years. Jameson affords a good illustration of a War Democrat, whose party principles changed sides after the Union was threatened. In 1860 he had been a delegate to the Democratic convention at Charleston supporting Stephen A. Douglas for the presidency, and in both 1861 and 1862 was the party nominee for governor of the state. He led his regiment in the campaign of First Manassas, where it formed a part of Keyes's brigade of Tyler's division, and was commissioned brigadier general of volunteers to rank from September 3, 1861, for his part in protecting the Federal retreat to Centerville. During General George B. McClellan's Peninsular campaign in the spring and summer of 1862, Jameson commanded a brigade of Kearny's division of Heintzelman's III Corps. As "General of the Trenches" on May 4, 1862, he was the first to discover the Confederate evacuation of Yorktown. His brigade was in reserve at Williamsburg, but at Seven Pines it is reported that "his command went nigher to the city of Richmond than any other portion of McClellan's army—and he declared that he would have been in Richmond in less than two hours had [he] not been recalled."  When he might have made this statement is a matter of conjecture, since his official report of the battle indicates that the two regiments under his immediate command were flanked and forced to withdraw.  In any event General Samuel P. Heintzelman reported him "particularly distinguished ... at the battle of Fair Oaks [Seven Pines], where his horse was shot under him. . . ." Soon after this he contracted "camp fever" which forced him to take a leave of absence and to return to Maine. He died on a steamboat between Boston and Bangor on November 6, 1862, and is buried in Riverside Cemetery, Stillwater, Maine.

Previous Page

Reference: Generals in Blue. Lives of the Union Commanders by Ezra J. Warner. Louisiana State University Press. Baton Rouge.