Patriots of '61 – Brigadier-General George Burgwyn Anderson of Orange County
Colonel George Burgwyn Anderson:
Born near Hillsboro on 12 April 1831, the oldest son of William
E. Anderson, Esq., and wife, Eliza Burgwyn. George attained high
honors and distinction at the University of North Carolina and was
appointed to West Point at age seventeen, graduating ninth in a class
of forty-one in 1852. In his memorial address of May 11, 1885, Hon.
Alfred Moore Waddell of Wilmington said of George Anderson:
"I am here to-day, in compliance with your invitation, to
attempt to pay a tribute to the memory of as noble a gentleman, as
knightly a soldier, as true a man, and as devoted a son of North
Carolina as any who lived. Truth and manliness were his
distinguishing characteristics, and to them in whomsoever found he was
ever ready to do reverence.
When George Anderson became an officer….he buckled on that
sword….[and] with fervent love and that inexorable sense of honor and
duty which was the all-controlling motive of his life, he turned to
North Carolina and reverently laid it at her feet. It was an offer
[by Governor John W. Ellis] gladly accepted, and he was immediately
commissioned Colonel of the Fourth Regiment.
The battle of Seven Pines was a bloody baptism for Colonel
Anderson's regiment; indeed, it was almost unparalleled in its
terrible destructiveness to that command, for of the twenty-seven
officers fit for duty all except one were either killed or wounded,
and of the five-hundred and twenty men in the ranks, eighty-six were
killed and three hundred and seventy-six were wounded, leaving only
fifty-eight out of the five-hundred and twenty unhurt – a record which
is the best evidence of the perfect discipline and splendid courage
exhibited by that glorious regiment in its first hard fight with the
During this engagement Colonel Anderson seized the flag of the
Twenty-seventh Georgia and dashed forward holding it aloft. Before
their resistless sweep the stubborn foe reeled and fled, and the
colors which Anderson bore were planted on their breastworks. Such men
were worthy of being commanded by the bravest of the brave, and the
cordial thanks and commendation of a division commander, who was not
given to laudation of any one, caused the immediate recognition of
Colonel Anderson's merits by the President, who, being on the field,
at once promoted him, and his well-won commission of Brigadier-General
was forwarded and received by him on the 9th day of June, 1862.
The brigade assigned to him were all North Carolinians, being
composed of the Second, Fourth, Fourteenth and Thirtieth Regiments –
as fine a body of troops as ever trod the perilous edge of battle, and
one with afterwards achieved as brilliant a reputation as the most
brilliant in the Army of Northern Virginia. Then came the Seven Days'
struggle around Richmond, in each of which the brigade took an active
part and the young brigadier won new laurels as a most gallant and
At the battle of Sharpsburg and during his brigade's assault on
the enemy's center Anderson received a wound in the foot which would
prove fatal. He was taken to Virginia -- with his brother and aide de
camp, Captain Walker Anderson, who was also wounded at Sharpsburg and
killed at the Wilderness -- to Raleigh, arriving in the latter part
"His wound was a most painful one, and he suffered great agony
for two weeks….Finally amputation was decided upon, but it was too
late. He sunk under the operation, and on the morning of October 16,
1862, in the thirty-second year of his age, his brave soul bid
farewell to earth. A very large assemblage of the citizens of Raleigh
gathered to give expression to their grief and to testify their
respect for his memory; his mortal remains were born to your beautiful
cemetery and tenderly and reverently laid beneath the sod where his
monument now stands.
[He] died, while the banner of the Confederacy still floated
triumphant in every breeze. He never saw that banner lowered to the
foe, and his proud spirit was spared the humiliation to which his
surviving comrades were afterwards subjected. The government for
which he fought and died was long since numbered with the dead
empires, and the one against which he bore arms has, with its vast
powers constantly centralizing in the hands of an all-absorbing
national legislature, become the richest and most powerful on the earth.
If true manliness and an exalted sense of duty; if the strictest
integrity, and the most scrupulous regard of the rights of others; if
a chivalric sentiment towards woman, and a delicate sense of personal
honor; if a commanding presence and cheerful spirit; if dauntless
courage and gentle manners; if a brilliant intellect and extensive
knowledge; and finally, if patriotic service, ending in painful
wounds, heroic suffering and death – if all these combined constitute a
theme worthy of commemoration by orator or poet, then the duty
assigned me to-day might well have been entrusted to the most gifted
of men, and the people of North Carolina would have a juster estimate
of the life and services of George Burgwyn Anderson."
(Source: Southern Historical Society Papers, XIV, Rev. J.
William Jones, editor, January to December 1886, excerpts, pp.
North Carolina War Between the States Sesquicentennial
"The Official Website of the North Carolina WBTS Sesquicentennial Commission"
TOOLBOX // 09.22.2012 11:03:39 AM
MicGivens // 09.22.2012 11:27:03 AM
It is a wonderful thing that you know the band personally and can vouch for their devotion to God and Country. I do not doubt a word. Let's be clear, Lynyrd Skynyrd giving up the flag to the "kidnappers" is capitulation and marks a sad day for the ongoing defense of a culture constantly under attack. I thank Lynyrd Skynyrd for all they have done in the past and wish them peace and happiness.
TOOLBOX // 09.22.2012 11:55:37 AM
MicGivens // 09.22.2012 01:21:46 PM