Ambrose Burnside | HistoryNet MENU

Ambrose Burnside

Facts, information and articles about Ambrose Burnside, a Civil War General during the American Civil War

Ambrose Burnside Facts


May 23, 1824 Liberty, Indiana


September 13, 1881 Bristol, Rhode Island

Years Of Service



Major General


Army of the Potomac
Army of the Ohio


American Civil War
First Battle of Bull Run
Burnside’s North Carolina Expedition
Battle of Roanoke Island
Battle of New Bern
Maryland Campaign
Battle of South Mountain
Battle of Antietam
Battle of Fredericksburg
Knoxville Campaign
Overland Campaign
Battle of the Wilderness
Battle of Spotsylvania Court House
Battle of North Anna
Battle of Cold Harbor
Siege of Petersburg
Battle of the Crater

Ambrose Burnside Articles

Explore articles from the History Net archives about Ambrose Burnside

» See all Ambrose Burnside Articles

Ambrose Burnside summary: Ambrose Burnside was the fourth out of nine children born to Pamela and Edghill Brown Burnside and he attended Liberty Seminary when he was only a young boy. His education came to a half after his mother passed away in 1841. Eventually he got an appointment to attend the United States Military Academy where he graduated from in 1847. He served during the Mexican-American War and the Civil War. Burnside served in the Rhode Island Militia as a brigadier general. He was eventually appointed to serve as its colonel in 1861.

Ambrose Burnside In The Civil War

He commanded his brigade at the first battle of Bull Run and took over the command of his troops after brigadier general David Hunter was wounded. Burnside then commanded the North Carolina expeditionary force or the coast division. Burnside was eventually offered the command of the army of the Potomac after the peninsula campaign in which major general George B. McClellan failed. Burnside also led the right wing in the army of the Potomac when the battle of South Mountain began. He also served in Fredericksburg, East Tennessee, the Crater, and the Overland Campaign. During the Battle of the Crater, Burnside received orders not to use the division of black troops just a few hours before the infantry attack. Black troops had been trained for the mission; without them, Burnside had to use untrained troops instead.

Ambrose Burnside After The War

Burnside worked at several industrial and railroad directorships after the war including the Martinsville railroad, Vincennes and Indianapolis railroad. As of 1874, he became one of the Rhode Island senators, eventually being reelected in 1880. He could not serve his full second term because he died in 1881.



Articles Featuring Ambrose Burnside From History Net Magazines

Articles 1

BLIND JUSTICE- Cover Page: May 1997 Civil War Times FeatureBLIND JUSTICE Should a Texas Ranger Expect Justice or Death From His Union Captors? BY DANIEL E. SUTHERLAND Ephraim Shelby Dodd sat in his Knoxville jail cell and scribbled a note to a local volunteer who was taking care of him and some other Rebel prisoners. He made a modest request–“a piece of soap, towel, …
Horsepower Moves the Guns – March ’96 America’s Civil War FeatureWorking side by side with soldiers, horses labored to pull artillery pieces into battle.Without them, field artillery could not have been used to such deadly effect.By James R. Cotner The field artillery of the Civil War was designed to be mobile. When Union or Confederate troops marched across country, the guns moved with them. During …
Day One at Chancellorsville – March ’96 America’s Civil War FeatureNew Union commander ‘Fighting Joe’ Hooker planned to encircle Robert E. Lee at the Virginia crossroads hamlet of Chancellorsville. The plan seemed to be working perfectly, until….By Al Hemingway Early in the evening on April 29, 1863, Major General James Ewell Brown Stuart rode up to the Chancellor farmhouse, a well-known inn 11 miles west …
Taking of Burnside Bridge – September ’97 America’s Civil War FeatureTaking of Burnside Bridge By John M. Priest While Union commander George McClellan fumed and the Battle of Antietam hung in the balance, a handful of Rebels held off Federal troops at “Burnside Bridge.” The day–September 17, 1862–promised to be long and hot, and the regimental commanders in Brigadier General Samuel Sturgis’ division of the …
George Smalley’s Vivid Account of the Battle of AntietamNew York Tribune reporter George Smalley scooped the world with his vivid account of the Battle of Antietam.
Return To The Killing Ground – November ’97 America’s Civil War FeatureReturn To The Killing Ground By Jeffry D. Wert Brash, bombastic John Pope tempted fate by returning to the old battleground at Manassas. He thought he had caught Robert E. Lee napping. He was wrong. A heavy, soaking rain fell across northern Virginia on the night of August 30-31, 1862. Despite the storm’s intensity, it …
A Town Embattled- February ’96 Civil War Times FeatureWinchester, Virginia, saw more of the war than any other place North or Southa town EMBATTLEDCHRIS FORDNEY Ten thousand Confederate troops filled the small town of Winchester, Virginia, early in the summer of 1861. Soldiers were quartered in almost every building. Then, in mid-July, a call came to stop a Federal advance on Manassas, and …

More Ambrose Burnside Articles

Comments are closed.