Brigadier General Lewis
Tragedy marked the life of Lewis Addison Armistead. He had two wives and two children die in the years from 1850 to 1855. His ancestral home burned in 1852. He was mortally wounded leading the remnants of Pickett's Division in the second assault against Cemetery Hill at the Battle of Gettysburg on July 3, 1863. Ironically, the defending Union troops were led by an old friend, General Windfield Scott Hancock. He was also wounded in the battle.
Lewis Addison Armistead was born in New Bern, North Carolina on February 18 1817. His father was General Walker Keith Armistead. He had served in the War of 1812. An appointment to the United States Military Academy at West Point was obtained for the young man in 1833, but he was forced to resign on January 29, 1836 because he cracked a mess hall plate over the head of another cadet named Jubal Early. Through the influence of his father and congressman uncle, Lewis Addison Armistead obtained an appointment as a second lieutenant in the 6th U. S. Infantry in 1839. First Lieutenant Armistead served in the Mexican War, and he received two brevet promotions for his gallant service. He later fought Indians in the West.
Captain Armistead resigned his U. S. Army commission, and he joined the Confederate Army on March 16, 1861 as a major. He was quickly promoted to the rank of colonel in command of a regiment. He was again promoted to brigadier general on April 1, 1862 and placed in command of a brigade. General Armistead successfully lead troops in the Battles of Seven Pines, Seven Days including a famous charge at Malvern Hill, and Second Bull Run. He died of his wounds on July 5, 1863 at the age of forty-six.
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