Prior to the 1st Battle of Bull Run, “Stonewall” was simply Thomas J. Jackson. His contributions to the Confederate Army during the American Civil War cannot be over stated. It has often been posited by historians that had Jackson not been mortally wounded during the Battle of Chancellorsville, the outcome of the war may have been different. Like General Robert E. Lee, Jackson was a brilliant tactician and afforded the enemy no quarter.
From the time Jackson was called into service for the Confederate States of America (C.S.A.) until his death in the spring of 1863, Jackson participated in every major battle in the Eastern Theater, suffering only one defeat at the Battle of Kernstown. Lee depended on him enormously and dispatched Jackson’s troops on the most difficult and dangerous missions. Jackson never disappointed as he believed nothing to be impossible and instilled this same philosophy in his soldiers. It was Jackson’s detailed planning and determination that ultimately resulted in his death.
Thomas Jonathan Jackson was born on January 21, 1824 in Clarksburg, a region of Virginia which is now part of West Virginia. He had a turbulent childhood as his father died when Thomas was just three, prompting his mother to send him to live with an uncle. Unsatisfied and restless, Jackson often fled from his new home in an attempt to find happiness. When his relatives managed to force him into a school room, he struggled academically. He had to work extremely hard at his studies in order to keep pace with his classmates.
Categories: United States History