Major General James S. Negley
James S. Negley was a politician. This brought him both successes and failures. The limited recorded history does not conclusively indicate the quality of Major General Negley's performance as a military commander. He is remembered for his participation in the Union defeat at the Battle of Chickamauga. His division stopped a Confederate penetration during the first day of fighting. During the second day, the division was moved piecemeal into the battle. General Negley ended up commanding fifty artillery pieces on Snodgrass Hill where the Union Army made their last defensive stand under General Thomas. After the battle, General Negley was relieved of his command and was charged with removing his artillery prematurely. A court of inquiry acquitted him, but he did not receive another command. Previously, his division had very successfully counterattacked at the Battle of Stones River. James Negley originally received an appointment as a brigadier general by raising a volunteer brigade. He had previous experience as a volunteer in the Mexican War, but he had no formal military training.
James Negley served three terms in the U. S. Congress from March 4, 1869 until March 3, 1875 as a Republican from Pennsylvania. He was defeated in his reelection attempt. He served another term from March 4, 1885 until March 3, 1887, but his reelection attempt again failed. James Negley served on the Board of Managers of the National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers in the years 1874 to 1878 and 1882 to 1888. He was also employed as a railroader and farmer.
James Scott Negley was born in East Liberty, Pennsylvania on December 22, 1826. He graduated from Western University of Pennsylvania at Allegheny in 1846. He died in Plainfield, New Jersey on August 7, 1901.
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