Dr. Robert Crooke Wood, Sr.

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Dr. Robert Crooke Wood, Sr.

Birthplace: Pawtucket, Providence County, Rhode Island, United States
Death: March 28, 1869 (67)
New York, NY, United States
Place of Burial: Lockport, Niagara County, New York, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of John Wood and Rebecca Wickham Wood
Husband of Ann Margaret Mackall Wood
Father of Capt. (CSA), John Taylor Wood; Col. Robert Crooke Wood, Jr. (CSA); Blandina Dudly von Grabow and Sarah Knox Wood
Brother of Ann Elizabeth Wood

Occupation: Surgeon, US Army, Brig Gen, Adjutant-General, USA surgeon
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Dr. Robert Crooke Wood, Sr.

http://www.ourfamtree.org/browse.php/Ann-Mackall-Taylor/p60046 and http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=71161491

Strong connections to the Civil War; Trained as a surgeon in the Minnesota frontier; Eventually advanced to Brigidier General in the Union Army (Assistant Surgeon General) by the end of the Civil War; Married Anne Mackall TAYLOR in 1829 who was the daughter of Zachary TAYLOR who eventually became the President of the United States; Also via this marriage, it made him the Brother-in-Law of Jefferson Davis who was eventually the President of the Confederacy; He also fathered two sons (John Taylor WOOD and Robert Crooke WOOD Jr.)who were both officers in the Confederate Army and Navy. Grave may be unmarked; Source: Lockport Union Sun & Journal (Lockport, Niagara County, NY) dated June 7, 201192 Dan Bagelman



Robert Crooke Wood (September 1800-March 28, 1869) Brevet Brigadier General, U. S. Army, was born in Newport, Rhode Island, one of six children of John and Rebecca Wood both of English ancestry. He passed his childhood and youth in Newport where his early education was obtained in private schools and by private tutors. Deciding early upon a career in medicine, he began the study under a Dr. Waring in South Car­ olina. With this start he went to New York City and entered the College of Physicians and Surgeons, from which he obtained the degree of M.D., with the class of 1821. Following graduation he practiced medicine at Utica, N. Y., until on May 28, 1825, he obtained the appointment as assistant surgeon in the United States Army, from the State of Rhode Island. He joined the service at Detroit Barracks, Michigan, but after four months was transferred to Fort Snelling, Minnesota, where he served until May 1833. While at this station, in 1829, he married Ann Mack­ all Taylor, eldest daughter of Lieutenant Colonel Zachary Taylor of the First Infantry, at that time commandant of the post. Shortly afterward Lieutenant Jefferson Davis married Knox Taylor, another daughter of their commanding officer. By these marriages Wood became later not only the son-in-law of a Presi­ dent of the United States but a brother-in-law of the President of the Confederacy. With troops from Fort Snelling, Wood served during the latter part of the campaign against the Sac and Fox Indians in 1832 and was present at the fight at Bad Axe River where the Indians were defeated and which resulted in the surrender of Black Hawk, the Sac chieftain. In May 1833 he was transferred to duty at Fort Crawford at Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin, also garrisoned by the - First Inf­antry. While at this post he was promoted,' on July 4, 1836, to the grade of major and surgeon. When the First Infantry was ordered to duty in Florida in July 1837 Wood accompanied the regiment. After, a stop at Jefferson Barracks, 'Missouri, until October, the regiment took station at Fort Brooks on the Ockla­waha river in Florida. Wood was with the regiment at the bat­tle of Okeechobee on December 25, 1837, and with it saw practic­ally continuous field service against the elusive Seminoles until May 1839, when a truce was affected, only to be broken after a few months. A warfare without results was still in progress when, in May 1840, Wood was relieved from Florida duty and transferred to Buffalo Barracks, N. Y. He served here with units of the Fifth Infantry until August 1845, when he was ordered to accompany that regiment to the Mexican border. With the regiment he arrived at Corpus Christi, Texas, in October. After a winter spent here, the regiment as a part of the army of General Zachary Taylor began an advance to the Rio Grande in March 1846 and went into camp on that river opposite Matamoras in Mexico. The bombardment of that camp from across the river on May 6 was followed by the battle of Palo Alto on May 8 and the battle of Resaca de la Palma on the following day. On May 13 President Polk issued a proclamation that a state of war with Mexico existed. The casualties in these engagements made necessary the es­ tablishment of a general hospital and to Wood was given the task of organizing such a hospital at Point Isabel, the army base on the coast near the mouth of the river. By clearing out some space in a quartermaster storehouse and erecting hospital tents, accommodations were provided for something more than one hundred wounded in the fighting up the river and of the seriously ill of the command. He remained in charge of this hospital during the campaign which ended with the capture of Monterey, and in March 1847 when the bulk of General Taylor's army was trans­ ferred to the army of General Scott at Lobos Island preparatory to the investment of Vera Cruz, he was sent to duty at New Orleans Barracks, Louisiana. Here were being transferred the disabled from Vera Cruz, until, with the close of the war and the evacuation of the Mexican hospitals, the hospital facilities were rapidly becoming inadequate. Wood was directed to conduct a survey of the civilian hospital accommodations in New Orleans and Baton Rouge and to make recommendations for new hospital facilities. As a result a temporary hospital was opened on Green wood Island at East Pascagoula, Mississippi, while a new hos­pital was being constructed at New Orleans Barracks. In May 1848 Wood was transferred to Fort McHenry in Baltimore, Maryland, where he served for the following six years. When in 1853 President Pierce began his administration, Jeffer­son Davis was appointed Secretary of War, serving thus until 1857. It is not unlikely due to this circumstance that in Nov­ ember 1854 Wood was detailed to duty the office of Surgeon General Lawson in Washington. Possessed of high intelligence and industry he became an important factor in the office during the remainder of General Lawson's administration and during the last months of the latter's life he was in charge of the office. In addition he was active in the social and civic life of Washing­ ton and made many close friends among those of influence in the political world. With the death of General Lawson in May 1861, Wood was an active candidate for the succession. With his ex­perience as assistant to the last incumbent and his position as fourth ranking officer in the corps he was regarded as the logical choice for the vacant post and his candidacy had much influential backing. If General Lawson's death had taken place a few months earlier there can be little doubt that Wood would have been the next surgeon general. But a new political party had just come into power in Washington and new influences were at work, and the recently inaugurated President Lincoln appointed to the place Surgeon Clement A. Finley, the senior officer of the corps. The new surgeon general retained Wood as his assistant and all evidence agrees that he gave loyal and generous support to the policies of his new chief. When General Finley's difficul­ties with Secretary Stanton and the Sanitary Commission cul­minated in his relief from the office in March 1862, Wood was ap­pointed acting surgeon general. With the retirement of General Finley on April 14, 1862, Wood was again a candidate for the vacancy, one among many. Surgeon Richard S. Satterlee, senior in the corps, was strongly supported and Secretary Stanton was said to have a candidate of his choice from the civilian profession. In the end the influence of the Sanitary Commission prevailed and Surgeon William A. Hammond was appointed. By an act of Congress of April 16, 1862 (12 Stat. 378) , the medical department was reorganized, with a provision giving the surgeon general the rank of a brigadier general and another for an assistant surgeon general and a medical inspector, each with the grade of colonel. Wood, having failed of appointment to the higher office, sought of Secretary Stanton the place of assistant. The choice was left to General Hammond, who ac­ quiesced in the appointment of Wood. Secretary Stanton, in giving his approval to the choice, questioned whether Wood could give wholehearted loyalty to his chief under the circumstances, but General Hammond thought that he could and would. Ap­ parently he shortly changed his mind, for within three months after he took over the office on April 25, 1862, Wood was trans­ ferred to St. Louis, Missouri, in charge of medical affairs in the Department of the West. In October 1863, the office was moved to Louisville, Kentucky, where he served out the war. Though separated from the Washington office, Wood retained his place as assistant surgeon general until October 1865. He was given the brevets of lieutenant colonel, colonel and brigadier general on March 13, 1865 for gallant and meritorious service during the war. Following the end of hostilities he was transferred to duty at Fort Adams at Newport, R. I., his birthplace. He served here for two years, until September 1867, when we was ordered to New York City for board duty in connection with the retirement of disabled officers. He himself appeared before this board and was retired in February 1869, a month before his death in New York city on March 28 from pneumonia in his sixty-ninth year. His funeral was from the Church of the Transfiguration on Fifth Avenue.


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Dr. Robert Crooke Wood, Sr.'s Timeline

September 23, 1801
Pawtucket, Providence County, Rhode Island, United States
August 13, 1830
Fort Snelling, Hennepin County, MinnesotaTerritory, United States
April 4, 1832
Fortt Snelling, Hennepin County, Minnesota Terretory, United States
January 9, 1835
Fort Crawford,, Prairie du Chien, Crawford County, Wisconsin, United States
November 21, 1835
Prairie du Chien, Crawford County, Wisconsin, United States
March 28, 1869
Age 67
New York, NY, United States
Cold Springs Cemetery, Lockport, Niagara County, New York, United States