John Milton Brannon

John Milton Brannan was born in Washington, D. C, on July 1, 1819. While serving as a messenger in the House of Representatives in 1837, he was appointed to the Military Academy by Representative RatlifF Boon of Indiana with the signed approval of 114 other Congressmen. After graduation he was posted to the artillery as a brevet second lieutenant. He served in routine garrison duty at various posts and was regimental adjutant of the 1st Artillery in the war with Mexico, winning the brevet of captain for gallantry at Contreras and Churu-busco. He was appointed brigadier general of volunteers on September 28, 1861. After serving creditably on the South Atlantic coast, Bran-nan commanded an infantry division under W. S. Rosecrans in the Tullahoma campaign and under General G. H. Thomas at Chickamauga. In the latter battle he lost 38 per cent of his command in the effort to hold Horseshoe Ridge, the last Union position on that bloody field. Following the relief of Rosecrans by U. S. Grant, Brannan was himself relieved from infantry command and was made chief of artillery of the Army of the Cumberland; nonetheless, he was at the same time brevetted colonel in the Regular Army for gallant services during the battle. He supervised the defenses of Chattanooga and took part in the Atlanta campaign; after the occupation of Atlanta in September, he was in charge of construction of the Union defenses and after October, 1864, conducted an inspection tour of the Department of the Cumberland. At the end of the war he was brevetted major general in both the regular and volunteer services. Reverting to his regular rank of major, 1st Artillery, Brannan's postbellum service included tours of duty at such artillery installations as Fort Trumbull, Connecticut; Fort Wadsworth, New York; and Ogdensburg, New York; he also briefly commanded troops in Tallahassee, Florida, during the weeks when Samuel J. Tilden was deprived of the presidency by the supporters of Rutherford B. Hayes. Retired as colonel of the 4th Artillery in 1882, he thereafter made his home in New York, where he died on December 16, 1892, and was buried in Woodlawn Cemetery.

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