Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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BREWERTON, Henry, soldier, born in New York city; died in Washington, District of Columbia, 17 April, 1879. He was at the head of the 2d class in the United States military academy when the 1st class was about to graduate in 1819. He obtained leave to essay the examination with the advanced class, and was graduated fifth from its head, thus completing the usual four years' course in three years. At the same time three of his classmates obtained similar permits and passed the ordeal successfully, though not with so high grade. But these irregularities of administration were found to be detrimental to the general good of the cadets, and were not permitted under the stricter discipline established soon after this time. Brewerton was at once commissioned second lieutenant of engineers, and, after a temporary detail to aid in determining the 45th parallel of latitude at Rouse's Point, New York, he was in September, 1819, assigned to duty as an instructor at the military academy. He was promoted first lieutenant of engineers, 1 January, 1825; captain, 21 September, 1826; major, 23 August, 1856; and lieutenant colonel, 6 August, 1861. During these years he was continuously engaged on important engineering works, such as Fort Adams, Newport, Fort Jackson, Louisiana, the defenses of Charleston harbor, on the light-house board, and as a member of various boards and commissions appointed to improve the defenses of the United States. In 1847 he received the degree of LL.D. from Dickinson College. During the early years of the civil war, from 1861 till 5 November, 1864, he was superintending engineer of the fortifications and improvements of Baltimore harbor, Maryland On 22 April, 1864, he was promoted colonel of engineers. The winter of 1864-'5 he passed in the neighborhood of Hampton Roads, superintending the construction of defensive works, and thence he was transferred to the defenses of New York. He was brevetted brigadier-general, "for long, faithful, and meritorious services," 13 March, 1865, and retired 7 March, 1867, in compliance with the law, "having been borne on the army register more than forty-five years." --His son, George Douglas, soldier, born about 1820. He joined Stephenson's regiment of "California volunteers," in 1846, as second lieutenant, became second lieutenant, 1st United States infantry, 22 May, 1847, and first lieutenant in June, 1850. He is the author of "The War in Kansas: A Rough Trip to the Border among New Homes and a Strange People" (New York, 1856); "Fitzpoodle at Newport"; and "Ida Lewis, the Heroine of Lime Rock" (Newport, 1869). He has published also, through a New York firm, "The Automaton Regiment" (1862), "The Automaton Company," and "The Automaton Battery" (1863). These devices for the instruction of military recruits were brought out when hundreds of thousands of untrained soldiers were eagerly studying the rudiments of the art of war, and were extensively used in connection with the regular books of tactics.
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