Sherman, William Tecumseh

Sherman, William Tecumseh

Sherman, William Tecumseh, 1820-91, Union general in the American Civil War, b. Lancaster, Ohio. Sherman is said by many to be the greatest of the Civil War generals.

Early Career

After the death of his father (1829) Sherman lived as a member of the family of Thomas Ewing. In 1850 he married Ewing's daughter Eleanor Boyle Ewing, well known for her many philanthropic activities. After graduating (1840) from West Point, he spent several years at various Southern garrisons, served in the Mexican War, and was later stationed at St. Louis and at New Orleans. Resigning from the army in 1853, he was a banker in San Francisco and New York (1853-57) and a lawyer in Leavenworth, Kans. (1858-59), before he became superintendent of the state military academy at Alexandria, La. (now Louisiana State Univ. at Baton Rouge).

Civil War Career

When Louisiana seceded Sherman resigned from the military academy (Jan., 1861), and in May he rejoined the U.S. army as a colonel. Sherman commanded a brigade in the first battle of Bull Run (July) and in August was made a brigadier general of volunteers and sent to Kentucky. There he succeeded Robert Anderson in command of the Dept. of the Cumberland (Oct.), but in November he was transferred to the Dept. of the Missouri.

Sherman distinguished himself as a division commander at Shiloh (Apr., 1862) and was promoted to major general in May. He took part in the operations about Corinth, occupied Memphis (July), and commanded the Dist. of Memphis (Oct.-Dec., 1862). After his defeat at Chickasaw Bluffs in the first advance of the Vicksburg campaign, he served under John A. McClernand in the capture of Arkansas Post (Jan., 1863). In the successful move on Vicksburg, Sherman ably led the 15th Corps. In July he was made a brigadier general in the regular army.

When Ulysses S. Grant assumed supreme command in the West, Sherman became commander of the Army of the Tennessee (Oct., 1863). He commanded the Union left at Missionary Ridge in the Chattanooga campaign (Nov.), went to the relief of Ambrose E. Burnside at Knoxville (Dec.), and destroyed Confederate communications and supplies at Meridian, Miss., in Feb., 1864.

When Grant became commander in chief, Sherman succeeded him as supreme commander in the West (March). His Atlanta campaign (May-Sept., 1864) resulted in the fall of that city on Sept. 2. The Confederate attempt to draw him back failed, and Sherman burned (Nov. 15) most of Atlanta and the next day, with 60,000 men, began his famous march to the sea. With virtually no enemy to bar his way, he was before Savannah in 24 days, leaving behind him a ruined and devastated land. Savannah fell on Dec. 21.

In Feb., 1865, Sherman started northward to close in on Robert E. Lee from the rear. Every step now reduced the area upon which the Confederates in Virginia could depend for aid. His advance through South Carolina (the state that in the eyes of Sherman's men had provoked the war) was slower but even more destructive than the march through Georgia.

In North Carolina, Joseph E. Johnston opposed Sherman in engagements at Averasboro and Bentonville, but after hearing of Lee's surrender, he asked for terms. Sherman, understanding the South and the devastation it had suffered better than any other Union general, offered him generous terms, but Secretary of War Stanton repudiated them. Johnston then surrendered (Apr. 26, 1865) the last major Confederate army on the same terms as Lee.

Sherman saw more clearly than any other Civil War general that modern warfare was completely unlike its 18th-century counterpart. In fact, he is sometimes credited with reinventing war, stressing the destruction of the infrastructure necessary to support an enemy army more than the killing of its soldiers, and establishing rules of conflict that are still in effect today. Since the Civil War was a war between free peoples, Sherman maintained that only by breaking the war spirit of the enemy, noncombatant as well as combatant, could victory be won—hence the march through Georgia and South Carolina. His famous statement that "war … is all hell" epitomizes his sentiments.

Later Career

Sherman was promoted to lieutenant general in 1866 and to general in 1869, when he succeeded Grant as commander of the U.S. army. He retired in 1884. He resisted all efforts to draw him into politics, vetoing Republican attempts to make him a presidential candidate in 1884 with the words: "If nominated I will not accept; if elected I will not serve."

Bibliography

See his memoirs (1875; ed. with foreword by B. H. Liddell Hart, 1957), The Sherman Letters (correspondence with his brother John Sherman, ed. by R. S. Thorndike, 1894), and Home Letters of General Sherman (ed. by M. A. DeWolfe Howe, 1909); biographies by B. H. Liddell Hart (1929, repr. 1960), L. Lewis (1932; with appraisal by B. Catton, 1958), R. G. Athearn (1956), J. M. Merrill (1971), J. Marszalek (1993), M. Fellman (1995), S. P. Hirshson (1997), and L. Kennett (2001); A. McAllister, Ellen Ewing, Wife of General Sherman (1936); T. H. Williams, McClellan, Sherman, and Grant (1962); J. B. Walters, Merchant of Terror (1973); J. F. Marszalek, Sherman's Other Wars: The General and the Civil War Press (1981); M. B. Lucas, Sherman and the Burning of Columbia (1988, repr. 2000); L. Kennett, Marching through Georgia (1995); C. B. Flood, Grant and Sherman: The Friendship That Won the Civil War (2006); N. A. Trudeau, Southern Storm: Sherman's March to the Sea (2008).

(born Feb. 8, 1820, Lancaster, Ohio, U.S.—died Feb. 14, 1891, New York, N.Y.) U.S. army general. A brother of John Sherman, he graduated from West Point, served in Florida and California, then resigned his commission in 1853 to pursue a banking career. He rejoined the Union army when the American Civil War broke out. He fought in the Battle of Bull Run, then served under Ulysses S. Grant at Shiloh and was promoted to major general. With Grant he helped win the Vicksburg Campaign and the Battle of Chattanooga. As commander of the division of the Mississippi, he assembled 100,000 troops for the invasion of Georgia (1864). After engagements with Confederate troops under Joseph Johnston, he captured and burned Atlanta and began his devastating March to the Sea to capture Savannah, leaving a trail of near-total destruction. In 1865 he marched north, destroying Confederate railroads and sources of supply in North and South Carolina. He accepted the surrender of Johnston's army on April 26. Promoted to general, he succeeded Grant as commander of the army (1869–84). Often credited with the saying “War is hell,” he was a major architect of modern total war.

Learn more about Sherman, William Tecumseh with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Tecumseh is a small city in Lenawee County of the U.S. state of Michigan. It is situated where M-50 crosses the River Raisin, a few miles east of M-52. Tecumseh is about 60 miles SW of Detroit, 25 miles south of Ann Arbor and 40 miles north of Toledo, OH.

As of the 2000 census, the city population was 8,574. The city is surrounded on three sides by Tecumseh Township, but is politically independent. Raisin Township borders the southern edge of the city.

History

The boundaries of Lenawee County were laid out by a proclamation of the Territorial Governor, Lewis Cass on September 10, 1822. Lenawee remained attached to Monroe County, out of which it was formed, until an act of the Territorial Legislature passed on December 26, 1826, organized the county government. The first settlement in the county was made two years earlier, on May 21, 1824, in Tecumseh. The settlers, consisting of fifteen men, eleven women, and six children, all came from Jefferson County, New York. In 1823, Musgrove Evans had located the land and persuaded General Joseph W. Brown and the others to move to the site. Brown and Evans, along with Austin Eli Wing purchased land there and platted the village of Tecumseh in 1824. These founders appealed to Governor Cass to locate the county seat of Lenawee at Tecumseh. This was accomplished by an act of the Territorial Legislature on June 30, 1824, even though county government would not be organized for another year and a half. Tecumseh would remain the county seat until 1838, when it was transferred to Adrian. The Township of Tecumseh was organized on April 12, 1837, initially encompassing the entire northern third of the county.

Among the noteworthy events which have occurred in Tecumseh is the world famous Dynamic Kernels tithing project. A local mill owner, Perry Hayden, planted a cubic inch of wheat and donated 10% of the harvest to the church and replanted the remainder. He continued this for the following 6 years, resting on the 7th. The amount of land needed for the final crop exceeded 2000 acres. Henry Ford donated much of the necessary land as did many local farmers. The project received much attention including a feature in Life magazine.

A horse, Don Juan, that belonged to the General George Armstrong Custer is buried in Tecumseh, the horse having been sent to a friend living there after the General's death.

One of the village's most well-known manufacturers is Tecumseh Products. Founded by the Herrick family during the early part of the 20th century, Tecumseh Products initially began business manufacturing refrigeration compressors. Today, Tecumseh is known as the "refrigeration capitol of the world."

Geography

Tecumseh is located in Southeast Michigan. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 5.4 square miles (14.0 km²), of which, 5.2 square miles (13.4 km²) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.6 km²) of it (4.26%) is water.

Highways

Demographics

As of the census of 2000, there were 8,574 people, 3,499 households, and 2,337 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,659.4 per square mile (640.3/km²). There were 3,651 housing units at an average density of 706.6/sq mi (272.7/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 95.85% White, 0.19% African American, 0.63% Native American, 0.69% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 1.49% from other races, and 1.14% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.40% of the population.

There were 3,499 households out of which 33.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.8% were married couples living together, 10.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.2% were non-families. 28.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.42 and the average family size was 2.99.

In the city the population was spread out with 26.4% under the age of 18, 7.5% from 18 to 24, 29.4% from 25 to 44, 21.5% from 45 to 64, and 15.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 92.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.2 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $46,106, and the median income for a family was $58,239. Males had a median income of $39,672 versus $27,630 for females. The per capita income for the city was $22,797. About 3.5% of families and 4.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 3.9% of those under age 18 and 7.4% of those age 65 or over.

Education

The city of Tecumseh is home to Tecumseh Public Schools which includes 1 traditional high school (grades 9-12), 1 alternative high school, 1 middle school (grades 5-8), and 4 elementary schools (grades K-4).

The Tecumseh High School Girl's Softball Team won both the 2007 and 2008 division II state championships.

The Tecumseh High School Men's Lacrosse Team won the 2002 state championship

Other facts

Infamous American serial killer Henry Lee Lucas murdered his mother in Tecumseh on January 12, 1960.

Points of interest

Tecumseh Area Historical Museum
Hidden Lake Gardens

See also

William Tecumseh Sherman

References

External links

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