Portrait of A. P. Hill

A. P. Hill died from a gunshot wound to the heart while trying to rally his troops at the Battle of Petersburg on April 2, 1865. [Wikimedia Commons]

Ambrose Powell "A.P." Hill - Facts

November 9, 1825 - April 2, 1865

Key facts about Confederate Lieutenant General A.P. Hill.

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Full Name:

  • Ambrose Powell Hill

Birth Date:

  • November 9, 1825

Birth Location:

  • Greenland, his father’s plantation near Culpeper, Virginia

Parents:

  • Thomas and Frances Hill

Education:

  • United States Military Academy (1847)

Occupation:

  • Soldier

Career Summary:

  • First lieutenant (USA)
  • Lieutenant General (CSA)

Spouse:

  • Kitty Morgan McClung (1859)

Nickname(s):

  • A.P.
  • Little Powell

Place of Death:

  • Charlotte, North Carolina

Date of Death:

  • April 2, 1865

Place of Burial:

  • Winston Family Cemetery in Chesterfield, Virginia
  • Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond, Virginia

Significance:

  • A. P. Hill entered the United States Military Academy in 1842, but graduated a year late, in 1847, due to illness.
  • While at West Point, A. P. Hill and future Union General George B. McClellan were roommates.
  • After graduating from West Point, A. P. Hill served in the Mexican-American War and the Seminole War.
  • On July 18, 1859, A.A. P. Hill married Kitty Morgan McClung, sister of Confederate cavalry general John Hunt Morgan.
  • A. P. Hill resigned from the U.S. Army in March 1861, just prior to Virginia seceding from the Union (April 17, 1861).
  • In March 1861, AA. P. Hill was appointed as a colonel of the 13th Virginia Infantry.
  • In early 1862, AA. P. Hill was promoted to brigadier general.
  • A. P. Hill’s fame came as the commander of his “Light Division” in the Army of Northern Virginia, which had a reputation for being able to move quickly and fight fiercely.
  • In 1862, Confederate commander Robert E. Lee transferred A. P. Hill to General Stonewall Jackson’s command to avoid a possible duel between Hill and his superior, General James Longstreet.
  • On September 3, 1862, Jackson had A. P. Hill arrested and temporarily relieved of his command when Hill questioned Jackson’s leadership abilities in front of subordinate officers.
  • On September 17, 1862, A. P. Hill’s division saved Robert E. Lee’s army from destruction at the Battle of Antietam by marching his troops from Harpers Ferry, Virginia to Sharpsburg, Maryland, and launching a blistering attack against Union forces.
  • On December 13, 1862, Union General George Meade’s troops breached A. P. Hill’s division at the Battle of Fredericksburg.
  • A. P. Hill’s running feud with his superior, Stonewall Jackson continued until Jackson’s death at the Battle of Chancellorsville.
  • On May 2, 1863, A. P. Hill was wounded in the same volley of friendly fire that killed Confederate General Stonewall Jackson during the Battle of Chancellorsville.
  • In 1863, A. P. Hill was promoted to lieutenant general and placed in command of the Third Corps of the Army of Northern Virginia.
  • Although A. P. Hill was sidelined by illness, his troops took part in Pickett’s Charge against Union troops entrenched on Cemetery Ridge on the last day of the Battle of Gettysburg (July 3, 1863).
  • A. P. Hill lost nearly two brigades of Confederate soldiers when poor planning resulted in an ill-advised attack at the Battle of Bristoe Station on October 14, 1863.
  • A. P. Hill died from a gunshot wound to the heart while trying to rally his troops at the Battle of Petersburg on April 2, 1865.
  • Throughout his career, A. P. Hill suffered from frequent bouts of illness, possibly from complications caused by venereal disease.
  • A. P. Hill was buried in the old Winston Family Cemetery in Chesterfield, Virginia.
  • In 1867, A. P. Hill’s remains were moved to Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond, Virginia.
  • A. P. Hill was known for typically wearing a red shirt into battle.
  • On June 11, 1941, the U.S. Army established Fort A.P. Hill in Caroline County, Virginia, named in honor of A. P. Hill.
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Citation Information

The following information is provided for citations.

  • Article Title Ambrose Powell "A.P." Hill - Facts
  • Coverage November 9, 1825 - April 2, 1865
  • Author
  • Keywords a.p. hill, confederate military commander, american civil war, army of northern virginia
  • Website Name American History Central
  • Access Date July 31, 2021
  • Publisher R.Squared Communications, LLC
  • Original Published Date
  • Date of Last Update April 29, 2021