Patrick Ronayne Cleburne’s Cork

Major-General Patrick Cleburne became the highest ranking Irishman to serve in the American Civil War. Starting the conflict as Captain of the Yell Rifles in Helena, Arkansas, he rose to become one of the most famous divisional generals in the Confederate forces. His fighting abilities earned him the nickname ‘Stonewall of the West’, and the distinctive blue flags of his division struck fear into all who faced them. He seemed destined for higher command, but his courageous proposal to arm slaves in return for their freedom ended hopes of further advancement. He fell at the head of his division in the brutal carnage that was the Battle of  Franklin, Tennessee on 30th November, 1864. To learn more about Cleburne read his commanding officer’s sketch here.

Bride Park Cottage, Killumney, Co. Cork where Patrick Cleburne was born and lived until aged eight

It was in this upper left room that Patrick Cleburne, 'The Stonewall of the West' was born on 16th March 1828

Memorial Plaque to Patrick Cleburne at Bride Park Cottage

St. Mary's Church of Ireland Church, where Patrick Cleburne was baptised

Grange House, where the Cleburne family moved in 1836; the house was considerably larger in the nineteenth century

The grave of Dr. Joseph Cleburne, Patrick's father, in St. Mary's Church of Ireland graveyard

The inscription on the grave reads: 'The Burial Place of Joseph Cleburne Esq. M.D. who died Nov. 24th 1843 Aged 51 years'. Patrick was only 15 when he died. It set in train the events that would lead to the family's emigration to the United States in 1849

*Special thanks are due to Mary Ronayne, Phil Murphy and D.J. Murphy, without whom these pictures could not have been presented.

Further Reading

For a comprehensive listing of the biographies on Major-General Patrick Ronayne Cleburne please see the books page of the site


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Categories: Cork, Memorials, Patrick Cleburne, Research, The Civil War and Ireland

Author:Damian Shiels

I am an archaeologist based in Ireland, specialising in conflict archaeology.

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7 Comments on “Patrick Ronayne Cleburne’s Cork”

  1. August 9, 2010 at 9:43 pm #

    Great to see these photos. Cleburne gave Sherman a lot of trouble at the north end of Missionary Ridge. The Irishmen of the 90th Illinois were witness to that trouble and recipients of some of it!

    • August 9, 2010 at 9:54 pm #

      Hi Jim, I have just finished reading that section of your book! For the 90th to have stood under that fire was incredible, particularly when you consider it was their first ‘set piece’ battle. I was looking to see if the 90th came up against the 5th Confederate directly there but it seems they were a bit apart. I am hoping to add more photos as the months go by of Cleburne in Ireland- the hunt is on for his school (which is difficult to locate) and I am searching for the shop he worked at in Mallow at the moment- still, something to pass the time!

  2. August 12, 2010 at 11:31 pm #

    As you have acknowledged people of surname RONAYNE – I was wondering if Patrick Ronanyne Cleburne so named because of his mother ? And are there any Cleburne relations still in the area in which he was born?

    • August 17, 2010 at 7:30 am #


      He was indeed- his mother’s family the Ronaynes came from the area of what is now Cobh (formerly Queenstown), from where the Cleburnes would eventually emigrate. There are some Cleburnes in the directory in Cork, and it seems unlikely that they are not related to him in some way. However, his direct family did go to the United States with him.

      Kind Regards,


  3. Pat Robertson
    December 14, 2010 at 3:17 pm #

    Can you tell me how to get hold of rosters or names of individuals and their duties that fought with General Cleburne?Such as who the doctors if there were any, his closets aides etc. I’m looking for names and duties.

    • December 15, 2010 at 9:54 pm #

      Hi Pat,

      I am not aware of any complete list but there most probably is one out there. As a starting point I would look to the Southern Historical Society Papers- for example the 1894 volume has a roster of the medical officers in the Army of Tennessee showing which regiments etc. they were assigned to. There is also much as regards general appointments in the 1876 volume (all Cleburne’s Brigadier-Generals are to be found here). I have found the obituaries in the Confederate Veteran most useful as well (I am researching the 5th Confederate Infantry of Cleburne’s Division myself). Also some of the many Cleburne publications, such as the ‘Cleburne and his Command’ by his Adjutant Iriving A. Buck and the more recent ‘Invisible Hero’ by Bruce H. Stewart would mention many of the men he commanded. There are also a number of useful publications on regiments from particular States that could be of help, e.g. Tennesseans in the Civil War for Tennessee Regiments. Are you looking for a specific individual or is it a more general theme? If I can be of any help don’t hesitate to contact me.

      Kind Regards,



  1. The Irish at Antietem - the bloodiest single day battle in US history - Page 6 - September 18, 2013

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