William George Mackey Davis (1812 - 1898)

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About William George Mackey Davis

Birth: May 9, 1812 Portsmouth Portsmouth City Virginia, USA Death: May 11, 1898 Alexandria Alexandria City Virginia, USA

Civil War Confederate Brigadier General. He was a prominent Florida lawyer when the Civil War began in 1861 and was commissioned Colonel in command of the 1st Florida Cavalry. In January 1862, he was promoted Brigadier General in commanded of a brigade of three Florida regiments and saw action in East Florida. In November 1862, he was assigned to command all the Confederate forces at Knoxville, Tennessee. After engagements with Union troops in Tennessee Campaign, he retired from the Confederate service for age and health reasons in May 1863. (bio by: John "J-Cat" Griffith)

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Brigadier-General W. G. M. Davis was before the war; a lawyer in Florida, widely known as a gentleman of great legal ability and high rank in his profession. Forsaking his practice in 1861, he raised a regiment and was on January 1, 1862, commissioned colonel of the First Florida cavalry and put in command of the provisional forces of east Florida. The Federals had already seized Fernandina, Jacksonville and other places along the coast. The chief business of Colonel Davis' regiment was to watch the movements of the enemy carefully, and as far as possible to prevent raiding or scouting parties of the Federals from penetrating into the interior. Gov. John Milton was very much opposed to the raising of cavalry commands for the defense of Florida, insisting that nothing but artillery and infantry were needed for the defense of that State. The executive council of the State passed a resolution requesting the governor to correspond with the President as to the necessity of the regiment being converted into an infantry regiment and being kept in the State for its defense.

On March 25, 1862, Colonel Davis and his regiment were ordered to report to Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston, and were assigned to east Tennessee, where they were kept busy watching the movements of the enemy, scouting and overawing the disaffected in that part of the Confederacy.

On November 4, 1862, he was commissioned brigadier-general and was placed in command of the department of East Tennessee. His brigade embraced the First Florida cavalry, the Sixth and Seventh Florida infantry and Martin's light battery. His scene of operations was a wild and difficult mountain region throughout which were people disaffected toward the Confederacy. It was necessary to control and at the same time to use much discretion in dealing with them. So the task of a department commander in that section was a very difficult one. During the time in which he exercised command his department was quite free from the presence of Federal troops.

On the 5th of May, 1863, he resigned his commission and retired from the military service of the Confederate States.

Confederate Military History



      
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Brig. General William G. M. Davis (CSA)'s Timeline

1812
May 9, 1812
1898
May 11, 1898
Age 86