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George Cadwalader
[[Image:150px|center|200px|border]]George Cadwalader
Personal Information
Born: May 16, 1806(1806-05-16)
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Died: February 3, 1879 (aged 72)
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Other Information
Allegiance: United States of America
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Branch: Union Army
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Rank: Major General
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Battles: American Civil War
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George Cadwalader (May 16, 1806 – February 3, 1879) was a general in the United States Army during the Mexican-American War and American Civil War.


He was born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, studied law, and was admitted to the bar. He served in the Pennsylvania state militia and suppressed anti-foreign riots in Philadelphia.

He was married in 1830 to Frances Butler Mease. They had three sons, Thomas, Henry and William, and one daughter, Frances.

Mexican-American War[]

On March 3, 1847, he was appointed brigadier general and took command of a brigade of reinforcements being sent to Winfield Scott in central Mexico. His brigade was designated the 2nd Brigade in the newly formed 3rd Division under Gideon Pillow. He participated in the battles of Contreras, Churubusco, and Chapultepec. For his services at Chapultepec he as brevetted major general in the Regular army.

Civil War[]

File:General George Cadwalader.jpg

Portrait of Cadwalader by Thomas Eakins

When the Civil War broke out, Cadwalader immediately volunteered his services to the Union cause. Due to his distinguished military experience, he was appointed major general of Pennsylvania Volunteers by Governor Curtin in April 1861.

On May 15, he was appointed military commander in Maryland, where Union communications were threatened by local Confederate sympathizers. On May 25, he ordered the arrest of John Merryman, who had been recruiting soldiers for the Confederate army. When Chief Justice Taney issued a writ of habeas corpus for Merryman, Cadwalader ignored him, stating that he was authorized by the President to suspend habeas corpus. This dispute resulted in the important case of Ex parte Merryman.

Cadwalader later took command of the 1st Division in Robert Patterson's Army of the Shenandoah.

On May 25, 1862, he was commissioned major general of volunteers in the U.S. Army.

Cadwalader later commanded of the post at Corinth, Mississippi. He returned to Pennsylvania and commanded the post at Philadelphia and successively the District of Philadelphia, the District of the Brandywine, and the District of the Susquehanna before resigning in July 1865. He spent the remainder of his life in Philadelphia.

In April 1865, General Cadwalader helped found the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States, a major fraternal organization for former Union army and navy officers. He served as Commander-in-Chief of the Loyal Legion until his death.

He died in Philadelphia on February 3, 1879.

See also[]

32x28px United States Army portal
32x28px American Civil War portal


External links[]