Colonel Miles was killed at Harper’s Ferry, West Virginia in September of 1862
CDV – Colonel Dixon Stansbury Miles 2nd US Infantry Regiment. Dixon S. Miles, a Marylander by birth, graduated from West Point, Class of 1824. He saw service in both the Seminole and Mexican Wars. In 1859, he was in command of the 2nd U.S. Infantry at Forts Kearny, and then at the beginning of the Civil War, Miles was stationed at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, and was ordered back east, and placed in command of a brigade under Gen, Robert Patterson.
In September of 1862, his units were stationed at Harper’s Ferry, WV., and on the 13th of that month, Confederate General “Stonewall” Jackson attacked the town. Believing he could hold for two days with reinforcements, he sent cavalry through the enemy lines to secure the needed troops. During this time, Gen. Jackson ordered a flanking movement at night to entrap the Union troops.
On the morning of the 15th, without the means to defend the town, waved the white surrender flag while on horseback, calling for the surrender, when an artillery shell burst near him, and tore off his left calf, which was the mortal wounding that led to his death the next day. He died in the master armorer’s home at the arsenal, the house used as his headquarters.
Photographed by Anthony, after a Brady negative. Cancelled revenue stamp.
Gil Barrett Collection.