Milford in Sussex County, Delaware — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Major General Alfred T.A. Torbert
Upon graduating from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, class of 1855, he saw service on the frontier, fought and scouted Indians in New Mexico and Texas, fought Seminoles in Florida, participated in the Utah expedition and garrison duty at Jefferson Barracks in St. Louis.
When Torbert returned East from frontier duty in late January 1861, Southern states had commenced to secede from the Union. His promotion to first lieutenant in the 5th U.S. Infantry was effective on February 25, 1861.
He was soon notified that the Confederate Congress had nominated and confirmed him a first lieutenant of artillery to rank from March 16, 1861, but he declined remained loyal to the Union.
His new orders assigned him to Camp Olden, near Trenton, New Jersey, reporting April 17, 1861 as mustering officer and to prepare and train New Jersey volunteers for
After six months, he longed for a combat assignment and was appointed Colonel of the 1st New Jersey volunteer regiment on September 16, 1861. He led his regiment during the Peninsular Campaign in Virginia (April-June 1862), engaged at Yorktown, West Point, Gaines Mill and Charles City Cross Roads.
At the battle of Second Manassas, August 1862, Torbert's brigade commander was mortally wounded and Torbert became commander. He commanded the 1st New Jersey Brigade, 6th Army Corps, Army of the Potomac at Second Manassas, South Mountain, Antietam, Fredericksburg and Gettysburg.
In the battle of South Mountain, September 14, 1862, where he was wounded, his gallant conduct and leadership secured his promotion to brigadier general of volunteers on November 29, 1862.
During the reorganization of the Army of the Potomac in April 1864, Torbert was transferred to the 1st Calvary Division. He led his cavalrymen at the Wilderness, Spotsylvania, Hawes' Shop, Cold Harbor, Trevilian Station and many other engagements. Torbert led the 1st Division, 6th Army Corps from March to April 1864.
On August 8, 1864 General Sheridan appointed Torbert chief of cavalry of the Middle Military Division. His cavalry force consisted of over 10,000 men. He was soon promoted to major general of volunteers on September 9, 1864.
The envelopment of Early's left flank by Torbert's cavalry secured the victory at the 3rd battle of Winchester, on September 19, 1864. Sheridan criticized Torbert for allowing Early to escape after the battle of Fisher's Hill, September 22, 1864. If Sheridan had not divided Torbert's cavalry force and positioned them in the proximity of Fisher's Hill, in all probability, Early's army would not have escaped. At Tom's Brook, October 9, 1864, Torbert's cavalry inflicted a severe defeat on the cavalry of Generals Rosser and Lomax, Early's cavalry leaders.
In a pre-dawn attack at Cedar Creek, October 19, 1864, Early's army caught Sheridan's army by surprise. Torbert's calm and resolute action at a most crucial time in the battle staved off a potential disaster as his cavalrymen fought off repeated confederate attacks to take the vital Valley Pike road leading to Winchester. When General Sheridan arrived on his celebrated ride from Winchester, he rallied and reformed his scattered troops so later in the day he could counter-attack Early's army. In this action the cavalry, led by Torbert, placed itself on Early's line of retreat and literally destroyed his army. It would never again be a viable fighting force in the Shenandoah Valley.
Torbert was brevetted Brigadier General U.S. Army, March, 13, 1865 for gallant and meritorious services at the battle of Cedar Creek.
After a leave of absence, Torbert returned commanded the Army of the Shenandoah from February to July 1865. During the war, Torbert received every brevet through major general in both the regular and volunteer services for gallant meritorious services.
General Torbert mustered out of the volunteer services on January 15, 1866. During a leave of absence, he resigned his regular army commission on October 31, 1866 after an illustrious military career.
Location. 38° 54.714′ N, 75° 25.692′ W. Marker is in Milford, Delaware, in Sussex County. Marker is on South Walnut Street just south of Causey Avenue (Delaware Route 36), on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 121 South Walnut Street, Milford DE 19963, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. A different marker also named Major General Alfred T.A. Torbert (a few steps from this marker); Causey House (within shouting distance of this marker); Milford (within shouting distance of this marker); Vale-Williams Memorial City Hall (within shouting distance of this marker); Liberty Tree Memorial (approx. 0.2 miles away); The Towers (approx. 0.2 miles away); Milford Veterans Memorial (approx. 0.2 miles away); Temple Lodge No. 9 A.F. & A.M. (approx. ¼ mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Milford.
Categories. • War, US Civil • Wars, US Indian •
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Credits. This page was last revised on November 13, 2019. This page originally submitted on November 13, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 35 times since then and 3 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on November 13, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.