Portrait of Richard S. Ewell.

Some historians have criticized Richard Ewell for his failure to attack Cemetery Ridge on the first day of the Battle of Gettysburg. Others have pointed out that General Robert E. Lee’s orders to Ewell were confusing, if not contradictory. [Wikimedia Commons]

Richard Stoddert Ewell - Facts

February 8, 1817 – January 25, 1872

Key facts about Confederate General Richard Stoddert Ewell.

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Full Name:

  • Richard Stoddert Ewell

Birth Date:

  • February 8, 1817

Birth Location:

  • Washington, D.C.

Parents:

  • Dr. Thomas and Elizabeth (Stoddert) Ewell

Education:

  • United States Military Academy (1840)

Occupation:

  • Military officer

Career Summary:

  • Captain (USA)
  • Lieutenant General (CSA)

Spouse:

  • Lizinka Campbell Brown (1863)

Nickname(s):

  • Old Baldy

Place of Death:

  • Spring Hill, Tennessee

Date of Death:

  • January 25, 1872

Place of Burial:

  • Old City Cemetery, Nashville, Tennessee

Significance:

  • Richard Ewell was raised on a farm called Stony Lonesome in Prince William County.
  • Richard Ewell attended the United States Military Academy and graduated thirteenth in his class in 1840.
  • Richard Ewell was brevetted to captain for his service in the Mexican-American War.
  • Richard Ewell resigned his commission in the U.S. Army on May 7, 1861, to become a colonel in the Virginia Provisional Army.
  • Richard Ewell was appointed to brigadier general in the Confederate Army on June 17, 1861.
  • On January 24, 1862, Richard Ewell was promoted to major general and sent to the Shenandoah Valley to support General Stonewall Jackson.
  • Doctors amputated Richard Ewell’s left leg below the knee after he was wounded at the Second Battle of Manassas on August 28, 1862.
  • Following his injury, Richard Ewell was fitted with a wooden leg and resumed active duty in May 1863.
  • Following Stonewall Jackson’s death on May 10, 1863, Richard Ewell was given command of Jackson’s Second Corps and was promoted to lieutenant general on May 23, 1863.
  • On May 26, 1863, Richard Ewell married his first cousin, Lizinka Campbell Brown, who had cared for him while recuperating from his leg injury.
  • Some historians have criticized Richard Ewell for his failure to attack Cemetery Ridge on the first day of the Battle of Gettysburg. Others have pointed out that General Robert E. Lee’s orders to Ewell were confusing, if not contradictory.
  • Frustrated by Richard Ewell’s failure to act, Robert E. Lee reassigned Ewell from command at the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House to the defense of Richmond on May 12, 1864.
  • Retreating from Richmond, Richard Ewell was captured at Sayler’s Creek on April 6, 1865, and was imprisoned at Fort Warren, Massachusetts, until August 19, 1865.
  • During the Civil War, Richard Ewell took part in the First Battle of Bull Run, the Battle of Gaines’ Mill, the Battle of Malvern Hill, the Seven Day’s Battles, the Battle of Cedar Mountain, the Battle of Gettysburg, the Wilderness Campaign, the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House and the final defense of Richmond.
  • After the Civil War, Richard Ewell retired to his wife’s plantation in Maury County, Tennessee, near Spring Hill.
  • Richard Ewell’s nickname was “Old Baldy.”
  • Richard Ewell died of pneumonia on January 25, 1872, at Spring Hill, Tennessee, three days after his wife succumbed to the same ailment.
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Citation Information

The following information is provided for citations.

  • Article Title Richard Stoddert Ewell - Facts
  • Coverage February 8, 1817 – January 25, 1872
  • Author
  • 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
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