Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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BUELL, Don Carlos, soldier, born on the present site of Lowell, Ohio, 23 March, 1818. He was graduated at the United States military academy in 1841, entered the 3d infantry, became first lieutenant on 18 June, 1846, and won the brevet of captain at Monterey, and of major at Contreras and Churubusco, where he was severely wounded. He served as assistant adjutant-general at Washington in 1848-'9, and at the headquarters of various departments till 1861, was made a lieutenant colonel on the staff, 11 May, 1861, and appointed brigadier-general of volunteers, 17 May, 1861. After assisting in organizing the army at Washington, he was assigned in August to a division of the Army of the Potomac, which became distinguished for its discipline. In November he superseded General W. T. Sherman in the department of the Cumberland, which was re-organized as that of the Ohio. The campaign in Kentucky was begun by an attack upon his pickets at Rowlett station, near Munfordsville, on 17 December On 14 February, 1862, General Buell occupied Bowling Green. On the 23d, with a small force, he took possession of Gallatin, Tennessee, and on the 25th his troops entered Nashville, supported by gunboats. He was promoted major general of volunteers on 21 March, 1862, and on the same day his district was incorporated with that of the Mississippi, commanded by General Halleck. He arrived with a part of a division on the battlefield of Shiloh, near the close of the first day's action, 6 April. Three of his divisions came up the next day, and the confederates were driven to their entrenchments at Corinth. On 12 June he took command of the district of Ohio. In July and August Bragg's army advanced into Kentucky, capturing several of Buell's posts, compelling the abandonment of Lexington and Frankfort, and the removal of the state archives to Louisville, which City was threatened as well as Cincinnati. General Bragg advanced from Chattanooga on 5 September, and, entering Kentucky by the eastern route, passed to the rear of Buell's army in middle Tennessee. The maneuver compelled General Buell, whose communications with Nashville and Louisville were endangered, to evacuate central Tennessee and retreat rapidly to Louisville along the line of the railroad from Nashville to Louisville. The advance of General E. Kirby Smith to Frankfort had already caused consternation in Cincinnati, which place, as well as Louisville, was exposed to attack. At midnight of 24 September, Buell's retreating army entered Louisville amid great excitement, as it was feared that Bragg would reach there first. On 30 September, by order from Washington, Buell turned over his command to General Thomas, but was restored the same day, and on 1 October began to pursue the confederates. On 7 October the two divisions of the confederate army formed a junction at Frankfort. Bragg had already drained the country of supplies and sent them southward, which was the object of his raid, before General Buell was able to meet him with equal numbers. As the confederates retreated the union troops pressed upon their heels, and at Perryville General Bragg halted and determined to give battle. The two armies formed in order of battle on opposite sides of the town. The action was begun, after the opening artillery fire, by a charge of the confederates early in the afternoon of the 8 October, 1862, and soon became general, and was hotly contested until dark, with heavy losses on both sides. The next morning General Bragg withdrew to Harrodsburg. The confederates retreated slowly to Cumberland Gap, and, though General Buell pursued them, he was blamed for not moving swiftly enough to bring them into action again. On the 24th he was ordered to transfer his command to General Rosecrans. A military commission, appointed to investigate his operations, made a report, which has never been published. He was mustered out of the volunteer service on 23 May, 1864, and on 1 June resigned his commission in the regular army, having been before the military commission from 24 November, 1862, till 10 May, 1863, and since that time waiting orders at Indianapolis. He became president 6th the Green River iron-works of Kentucky in 1865, and subsequently held the office of pension agent at Louisville, Kentucky
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