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.
*Special thanks are due to Mary Ronayne, Phil Murphy and D.J. Murphy, without whom these pictures could not have been presented.
For a comprehensive listing of the biographies on Major-General Patrick Ronayne Cleburne please see the books page of the site