Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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ZALINSKI, Edmund Louis Gray, soldier, born in Kurnick, Prussian Poland, 13 December, 1849. He came to the United States in 1853, attended school at Seneca Falls, New York, until 1861, and subsequently was at the high-school in Syracuse, New York, until 1863. At the age of fifteen he entered the army, serving at first as volunteer aide-de-camp on the staff of General Nelson A. Miles from October, 1864, till February, 1865. He was commissioned 2d lieutenant in the 2d New York heavy artillery in February. 1865, having been recommended for the appointment by his superior officers for gallant and meritorious conduct at the battle of Hatcher's Run, Virginia After being commissioned he continued on General Miles's staff until after the surrender of General Robert E. Lee, participating in all of the engagements up to that date. He was mustered out of the volunteer service in September, 1865, and recommended, or an appointment in the regular army, where he was commissioned a 2d lieutenant in the 5th United States artillery, 23 February. 1866, and by regular promotion became 1st lieutenant in January, 1867, and captain, 9 December, 1887. From 1872 till 1876 he was on duty at the Massachusetts institute of technology as professor of military science. He was graduated at the Artillery school. Fort Monroe, Virginia, 1 May, 1880, and at the school of submarine mining, Willet's point, New York, in July of the same year. Captain Zalinski's name is widely known in connection with the development of the pneumatic dynamite torpedo-gun. (See vignette.) He has invented the electrical fuse and other devices for the practical application of the weapon, and has also devised a method for the exact sight-allowance to be made for deviation due to wind in the use of rifled artillery and small-arms. His other inventions include an intrenching-tool, a ramrod-bayo-net, and a telescopic sight for artillery.
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