Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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PRICE, Sterling, soldier, born in Prince Edward county, Virginia, 11 September, 1809; died in St. Louis, Missouri, 29 September, 1867. He was a student at Hampden Sidney college, read law, moved to Chariton county, Missouri, in 1831, and was speaker of the Missouri house of representatives in 1840-'4. He was elected to congress in the latter year as a Democrat, but resigned in 1846, and raised the 2d Missouri cavalry regiment for the Mexican war, becoming its colonel. He moved his regiment With that of Colonel Doniphan, both under command of General Stephen W. Kearny, from Fort Leavenworth to Santa F6, more than 1,000 miles, the march occupying more than fifty days, and the army subsisting mainly on the country. Colonel Price, with about 2,000 men, was left in charge of New Mexico, General Kearny moving with the remainder of the command to California. An insurrection occurred in Santa Fe, to which Governor Brent and several of his officers fell victims during their absence from the town. Colonel Price now attacked the Mexicans, completed the conquest of the province in several brilliant actions, and after promotion to brigadier-general of volunteers, 20 July, 1847, marched to Chihuahua, of which he was made military governor. He defeated the Mexicans at Santa Cruz de Rosales, 16 March, 1848. Gem Price was governor of Missouri from 1853 till 1857. bank commissioner of tile state from 1857 till 1861, and president of the State convention on 4 March, 1861. He was appointed major-general of the Missouri state guard on 18 May, and after he had been joined by General Ben McCulloch and General Pearce with Confederate troops and Arkansas militia, they defeated General Nathaniel Lyon at Wilson's creek, in southwestern Missouri, 10 August, 1861. Price then advanced northward and invested Lexington, on Missouri river, 12 September, 1861. He captured the place, with 3,500 men, on 21 September, but fell back southward before General John C. f Fremont, and went into winter-quarters near Springfield, whence he was driven by General Samuel R. Curtis. 12 February, 1862, and retreated toward Fort Smith, Arkansas General Earl Van Dorn assumed command of Price's and McCulloch's armies, attacked Curtis at Pea Ridge, 7 March, 1862, and was defeated. Van Dorn was now ordered to Tennessee. Price participated in the engagements around Corinth, retreated under Beauregard to Tupelo, was assigned to the command of the Army of the West in March, 1862, and then to the district, of Tennessee. He moved toward Nashville, and met and fought with General William S. Rosecrans, in command of Grant's right, at Iuka, 19 September, 1862, but was ordered to report to Van Dorn, and by his direction abandoned Iuka and joined him near Baldwyn. He participated in Van Dorn's disastrous attack upon Corinth in October, 1862, and in the operations under General John C. Pemberton in northern Mississippi during the winter of 1862-'3. He was then ordered to the Trans-Mississippi department, took part in the unsuccessful attack upon Helena, 21 July, 1863, and was assigned to the command of the district of Arkansas. He was driven from Little Rock by General Frederic Steele, but successfully resisted Steele's advance toward Red river in March, 1864, and forced him to retreat. He made a raid into Missouri in September, 1864, had many engagements with the National forces, and reached Missouri river, but was driven out of the state and into southwestern Arkansas. After the surrender of the Confederate armies he went to Mexico, but he returned to Missouri in 1866.
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