Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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DAVIS, Nelson Henry, soldier, born in Oxford, Worcester County, Massachusetts, 20 September 1821. He was graduated at the U. S. military academy in 1846, and assigned to the 3d infantry. He served in the war with Mexico, received the brevet of 1st lieutenant for gallantry at Contreras and Churubusco, and was also at the siege of Vera Cruz, the battle of Cerro Gordo, and the capture of the City of Mexico. He was promoted 1st lieutenant 8 June 1849, and then served on the frontier, being engaged in several actions while on the Sierra Nevada expedition of 1849'50, and taking part in the Rogue River expedition of 1853. He was made captain on 3 March 1855, was at the battle of Bull Run, and from 4 September to 12 November 1861, was colonel of the 7th Massachusetts volunteers. He then became major and assistant inspector general, and served with the Army of the Potomac till the autumn of 1863, receiving the brevet of lieutenant colonel for gallantry at Gettysburg. He was then transferred to New Mexico, was brevetted colonel 27 June 1865, for his services against the Apache Indians, and also received the brevet of brigadier general for his services in the civil war. He was inspector general of the district of New Mexico in 1868, of the department of Missouri in 1868'72, was on a tour of inspection till 1876, and then became inspector general of the division of the Atlantic. He was commissioned brigadier general on 11 March 1885, and retired on 20 September
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