Discussion The Last Ten Confederate Generals Still Living; as of 1 February 1914

Jan 29, 2019
In the 1 Feb 1914 issue of: "The Times Dispatch," which was published at Richmond, VA. there was an interesting article regarding the last ten Confederate Generals, then to still be living. I have rearranged the names in order of appearance according to the dates of death, to indicate the last living "fully confirmed" Confederate General to die. The list is comprised wholly of Brigadier-Generals, because by 1 Feb 1914, when the list was compiled, there were no surviving Generals, Lieutenant-Generals or Major-Generals of the Confederate army still living. Below is the list:

1)- Brig. General John McCausland (1836-1927), then living at Point Pleasant, West Virginia.

2)- Brig. General Marcus J. Wright (1831-1922), then living at Washington, D.C.

3)- Brig. General Evander McIver Law (1836-1920), then living at Bartow, Florida.

4)- Brig. General Roger Atkinson Pryor (1828-1919), then living at Manhattan, New York.

5)- Brig. General William Ruffin Cox (1832-1919), then living at Richmond, Virginia.

6)- Brig. General William McComb (1828-1918), then living at Louisa County, Virginia.

7)- Brig. General Samuel Wragg Ferguson (1834-1917), then living at Biloxi, Mississippi.

8)- Brig. General Basil Wilson Duke (1838-1916), then living at Bowling Green, Kentucky.

9)- Brig. General Francis Marion Cockrell (1834-1915), then living at Warrensburg, Missouri.

10)- Brig. General Thomas Muldrup Logan (1840-1914) then living at New York City, New York.

In the article, The Times Dispatch stated that there were two other Confederate officers still living, who were known to be "Brigadier-Generals," however those were "temporary appointments," who were never "officially confirmed or commissioned" to that position. Those being:

1)- Colonel Thomas Taylor Munford (1831-1918), his promotion to Brig. General went through on 9 Nov 1864, but his rank was never officially confirmed and he was never commissioned to the rank of Brig. General.

2)- Lieutenant-Colonel Felix Huston Robertson (1839-1928), from Texas, was officially listed as Brig. General (temporary), on 26 Jul 1864. However, his nomination was rejected on 22 Feb 1865, and therefore he was never "officially confirmed or commissioned" to the rank of Brig. General. Although many, including some SCV sources list him as the last Confederate General to live and die. He would be the last surviving general officer of the Confederacy if his "appointment" counted despite Senate rejection.

Brig. General John McCausland (1836-1927), died at his farm near Point Pleasant, West Virginia, on 22 Jan 1927, making him the last "fully confirmed" Confederate General to live and die.

Regarding the ten surviving Confederate Generals from the list above, only one of the ten, Brig. General Samuel Wragg Ferguson, was a West Point graduate. As a matter of fact, in February 1914, Ferguson was the only one still living of the 255 West Point graduates who left the U.S. Army and joined the Confederate Army, the other 254 had already passed away by then. Making Ferguson the only of the Confederate Generals, or any officer who graduated West Point and joined the Confederate Army, still living to receive Longevity pay, from the U.S. Government. Felix Huston Robertson, attended West Point, entering the academy in 1857, the same year that Ferguson graduated and had already entered the U.S. Army. However, in 1861, Robertson left West Point before graduating to enter the Confederate Army. So he would be the only other from the list above to have at least attended West Point, even though he did not graduate.

John Hartwell

Forum Host
Aug 27, 2011
Central Massachusetts
Another list, published in 1915, has 11 surviving Confederate Generals (they include Robertson, but not Munfordor the deceased Logan, and add Thos. B. Smith):

Francis Marion Cockrell, Washington D.C.
Basil Wilson Duke, Louisville, Ky.
John McCausland, Mason Co., W. Va.
Marcus Joseph Wright, Washington, D.C.
William Ruffin Cox, Richmond, Va.
William McComb, Louisa Co., Va.
Samuel Wragg Ferguson, Greenville, Miss.
Roger Atkinson Pryor, New York City
Evander McIver Law, Bartow, Fla.
Felix Huston Robertson, Crawford, Tex.
Thomas Benton Smith, Nashville, Tenn.

The report also names 17 Union Generals, including 4 Major Generals.
The article attached to that thread includes photos and short bios of each.
Jan 29, 2019
Another list, published in 1915, has 11 surviving Confederate Generals (they include Robertson, but not Munfordor the deceased Logan, and add Thos. B. Smith).

Great call on Thomas B. Smith. It appears that he was "appointed" to the rank of Brigadier-General (Temporary) on 29 Jul 1864, and was nominated for Senate confirmation on 2 Aug 1864, and was confirmed to the rank of Brigadier-General on 20 Feb 1865.

The best compiled list of Confederate general officers, that I have found is Wikipedia, with photos and biographies. Follow the link below:


Regarding Federal general officers, also with photos and biographies, follow the link below:

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Jan 29, 2019
Seems like a staggering number
I am sure to the Federal army it was a staggering number. They had to replace, at the very least, that same number just to get back to being whole. The 255 officers who resigned their commissions with the U.S. Army and joined the Confederate Army were some of their most capable and experienced officers. So it took quite a while to replace them, albeit not replacing the vast amount of experience which they took with them upon their departure, with many of those replacements coming in the form of junior officers who were promoted up and then drawing from the non-commissioned officers and the rank and file for the rest.

The 30 Dec 1915 issue of "The Comet," which was published at Johnson City, TN. printed almost a full page piece, entitled:
"A Complete List of Officers who left the U.S. Army and Joined the Confederacy," which listed all of the officers who left the U.S. Army after November 1860 and joined the Confederate army, with the majority of them resigning their commissions in the first couple of months of 1861. The paper also indicated which of those officers named in the article were West Point (USMA) graduates.

The 17 Jul 1914 issue of "The Pascagoula Democrat-Star," which was published in Pascagoula, MS. printed an article regarding Longevity pay, which was then owed to the 255 West Point graduates, or their heirs, who had resigned their commissions from the U.S. Army and joined the Confederate Army at the outbreak of the war. By July 1914 Congress had only recently repealed punitive legislation, which it initially passed into law just after the close of the Civil War, which imposed penalties on West Point graduates who served in the Confederate army, essentially barring them from receiving any Longevity Allowance which may be due them for their prior service in the U.S. Army. That being Section 3480 of the Revised Statutes. On 10 Jul 1914, Brig. General Samuel Wragg Ferguson received notification from the U.S. government, through his legal counsel, King & King of Washington, D.C., informing him that he was qualified for the Longevity pay. Interestingly enough, he was the only one of the 255 West Point graduates that joined the Confederate Army still living and qualified to receive the pay, for his actual service performed. With the heirs of the other 254 officers who qualified for the payment receiving their part of the lump sum of money, being a total of $174,000 having been set aside in the bill (S-751) for that purpose.
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