Portrait of Erastus B. Tyler

Erastus B. Tyler was credited with preventing Confederate General Jubal Early from entering the nation’s capital. President Lincoln later reportedly remarked that the Union was “more indebted to General Tyler than any other man for the salvation of Washington.”[Wikimedia Commons]

Erastus Bernard Tyler - Facts

April 24, 1822 - January 9, 1891

Key facts about Brigadier General Erastus B. Tyler, a Union officer who participated in many of the major battles of the Eastern Theater of the American Civil War.

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Full Name:

  • Erastus Bernard Tyler

Birth Date:

  • April 24, 1822

Birth Location:

  • West Bloomfield, New York

Parents:

  • Asahel and Maria (Bernard) Tyler

Education:

  • Granville College (now Denison University)

Occupation:

  • Furrier

Career Summary:

  • Brigadier General (USVA)
  • Brevet Major General (USVA)

Spouse:

  • Emily M. Tyler

Place of Death:

  • Baltimore, Maryland

Date of Death:

  • January 9, 1891

Place of Burial:

  • Greenmount Cemetery, Baltimore, Maryland

Significance:

  • Erastus B. Tyler graduated from Granville College (now Denison University).
  • As a young man, Erastus B. Tyler was a hat maker and fur trader.
  • While residing in Ravenna, Ohio Erastus B. Tyler was a member of the local militia, rising to the rank of brigadier general.
  • When the Civil War began Erastus B. Tyler helped recruit the 7th Ohio Volunteer Infantry, which included a company known as Tyler’s Raiders.
  • The 7th Ohio Volunteer Infantry officers elected Erastus B. Tyler as the regiment’s first colonel.
  • On August 26, Confederate Brigadier General John B. Floyd defeated Erastus B. Tyler and the 7th Ohio Volunteer Infantry at the Battle of Kessler’s Cross Lanes.
  • On May 14, 1862 Erastus B. Tyler was promoted to brigadier general and placed in command of the 3rd Brigade of Major General James Shields’s 1st Division of the 5th Corps of the Army of the Potomac.
  • Erastus B. Tyler saw action throughout most of the Shenandoah Valley Campaign of 1862, including the Battle of Kernstown I and the Battle of Winchester I.
  • Erastus B. Tyler was the principal Union field commander during the Federal loss at the Battle of Port Republic, the last engagement of the Shenandoah Valley Campaign of 1862.
  • In September of 1862, Erastus B. Tyler was present at the Battle of Antietam, but his brigade was held in reserve.
  • In December 1862, Erastus B. Tyler led his brigade in a series of unsuccessful assaults against Marye’s Heights during the Union defeat at the Battle of Fredericksburg.
  • Erastus B. Tyler was wounded in the head and torso by shrapnel from and exploding shell at the Battle of Fredericksburg.
  • Erastus B. Tyler participated in Major General Ambrose Burnside’s infamous Mud March during January 1863.
  • Erastus B. Tyler’s brigade helped stabilize the right flank of the Union line at the Battle of Chancellorsville until the Rebels prevailed.
  • Erastus B. Tyler was placed in command of the defenses of Baltimore, Maryland in June 1863.
  • Erastus B. Tyler briefly succeeded Robert C. Schenck as commander of the 8th Corps from September 28, 1863 to October 10, 1863.
  • In July 1864, Erastus B. Tyler successfully defended the Jug Bridge on the Baltimore Pike with two regiments of inexperienced recruits during the Battle of Monocacy.
  • Erastus B. Tyler was credited with preventing Confederate General Jubal Early from entering the nation’s capital. President Lincoln later reportedly remarked that the Union was “more indebted to General Tyler than any other man for the salvation of Washington.”
  • When the war ended, Erastus B. Tyler was brevetted to the rank of major general dating from March 1865.
  • Erastus B. Tyler mustered out of the service on August 24, 1865.
  • After the Civil War, Erastus B. Tyler took up residence in Baltimore, where he served as postmaster in 1877.
  • Erastus B. Tyler died in Baltimore on January 9, 1891 due to intestinal complications from the wounds he received at Fredericksburg.
  • Erastus B. Tyler was buried at Greenmount Cemetery in Baltimore.
  • After Erastus B. Tyler’s death, his wife, Emily M. Tyler (who he had met and married in Baltimore following the war) was awarded a pension for his service.
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Citation Information

The following information is provided for citations.

  • Article Title Erastus Bernard Tyler - Facts
  • Coverage April 24, 1822 - January 9, 1891
  • Author
  • Keywords Erastus Bernard Tyler
  • Website Name American History Central
  • Access Date August 1, 2021
  • Publisher R.Squared Communications, LLC
  • Original Published Date
  • Date of Last Update April 29, 2021
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