Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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ROSS, Leonard Fulton, soldier, born in Fulton county, Illinois, 18 July, 1823. He was educated in the common schools of Illinois and at Jacksonville college, studied law, and was admitted to the bar in 1845. In 1846 he joined the 4th Illinois volunteers for the Mexican war, became 1st lieutenant, and was commended for services at Vera Cruz and Cerro Gordo, commanding the body-guard of General James Shields while making a difficult reconnoissance. He also bore important despatches from Metamora to General Zachary Taylor and to General Robert Patterson in Victoria, Mexico. After the war he restarted his practice, and was probate judge for six years. He was chosen in May, 1861, colonel of the 17th Illinois regiment, which he had raised, and served with it in Missouri and Kentucky, bearing himself with great gallantry at Fredericktown, Maine, 21 October, 1861, where his horse was shot under him. In 1862 he was in command of Fort Girardeau, Maine He was commissioned brigadier-general of volunteers on 25 April, 1862, after commanding a brigade since the capture of Fort Donelson, Tennessee, 16 February, 1862. After the evacuation of Corinth, 30 May, 1862, he was promoted to the command of a division and stationed at Bolivar, Tennessee In 1867 he was appointed by President Johnson collector of internal revenue for the 9th district of Illinois. He has been three times a delegate to National Republican conventions, and was twice a defeated candidate for congress. Since 1866 he has given his attention to farming and has been interested in various agricultural societies, fie has imported fine stock into this country, and now (1888) has a large farm in Iowa.--His brother, Lewis W., was a representative in congress in 1863-'9.
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