Thomas, George H(enry)

Thomas, George H(enry)

biographical name

(born July 31, 1816, Southampton county, Va., U.S.—died March 28, 1870, San Francisco, Calif.) U.S. general. He was a graduate of West Point. When the American Civil War broke out, he remained loyal to the Union despite his Southern birth. He commanded an independent force in eastern Kentucky, where he won the first important Union victory in the west in 1862. At the Battle of Chickamauga he organized an unyielding defense, earning promotion to brigadier general and the nickname “the Rock of Chickamauga.” In 1864 he defeated the Confederate forces of Gen. John B. Hood (1831–79) in the Battle of Nashville, earning another promotion and the gratitude of Congress.

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