Col. William Preston Johnston (CSA)

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Col. William Preston Johnston, (CSA)

Birthdate: (68)
Birthplace: Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky, United States
Death: July 16, 1899 (68)
Lexington, Rockbridge County, Virginia, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Gen Albert Sidney Johnston (CSA) and Henrietta Johnston
Husband of Rosa Elizabeth Johnston and Margaret Henshaw Johnson
Brother of Maggie Asmus
Half brother of Henrietta Preston Johnston; Albert Sidney Johnston, Jr.; Hancock McClung Johnston, Sr.; Margaret Strother Prichard; Griffin Johnston and 1 other

Managed by: Private User
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About Col. William Preston Johnston (CSA)

William Preston Johnston (January 5, 1831 – July 16, 1899) was a lawyer, scholar, poet, and Confederate soldier.


Johnston was born in Louisville, Kentucky to General Albert Sidney Johnston (CSA) and Henritta Preston. At the age of four, his mother died, and he was reared by her family members. Johnston attended several local schools, including the academy of Samuel Venable Womack in Shelbyville, Centre College in Danville, Western Military Institute in Georgetown and Yale College. In March 1853, he received his law degree from the Louisville School of Law. On July 6, 1853, he married his first wife named Rosa Elizabeth Duncan, who was the daughter of John N Duncan of New Orleans.

During the American Civil War, Johnston served as an aide-de-camp to Jefferson Davis, president of the Confederate States. Johnston was a colonel in the Confederate Army. Johnston was captured with Jefferson Davis in Georgia at the end of the war, and was imprisoned for several months at Fort Delaware.

After the war (at the invitation of Robert E. Lee), he became a professor at Washington College in Virginia. In 1880, he became president of Louisiana State University, but resigned four years later to become the first president of the new Tulane University in 1884.

Johnston wrote two books of poetry, My Garden Walk (1894) and Pictures of the Patriarchs and Other Poems (1895). He also wrote The Prototype of Hamlet and Other Shakespearean Problems (1890) as well as a biography of his father, The Life of General Albert Sidney Johnston (1878).

After the death of his first wife on October 19, 1885, he married Margaret Henshaw Avery of Avery Island, Louisiana. At the age of 67 on July 16, 1899, he died at the home of his son-in-law, Congressman Henry St. George Tucker in Lexington, Virginia.

He was graduated from Yale, 1852; colonel in the Confederate army, serving on Jefferson Davis's staff; professor in Washington and Lee University; president of Louisiana State University, 1880; first president of Tulane University, New Orleans, La., 1884 ; published the life of his father.

No children.

THE GROTON AVERY CLAN, Vol. I, by Elroy McKendree Avery and Catherine Hitchcock (Tilden) Avery, Cleveland, 1912. p. 782

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Col. William Preston Johnston (CSA)'s Timeline

January 5, 1831
Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky, United States
July 16, 1899
Age 68
Lexington, Rockbridge County, Virginia, United States