“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Newsoms in Southampton County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)


Home of Gen. George H. Thomas

Thomaston CWT Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bernard Fisher, April 18, 2009
1. Thomaston CWT Marker
Inscription.  Gen. George H. Thomas was born in this house on July 31, 1816. He lived here until his appointment to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 1836, where he roomed his first year with William T. Sherman. After graduation in 1840, Thomas entered the U.S. Army and fought in the Seminole and Mexican Wars, serving in the latter under Albert Sydney Johnson and Robert E. Lee. Early in the 1850s, he taught cavalry tactics at West Point; among his students were future Civil War generals Philip H. Sheridan and J.E.B. Stuart.

Thomas last saw his home in December 1860. When the Civil War began, Thomas, unlike his fellow Virginians Lee and Stuart, remained in the U.S. Army. His Southern roots bred distrust among his superiors, while his loyalty to the United States brought him the enmity of his sisters, who continued to live in the house. They allegedly refused to send him the sword (now in the Virginia Historical Society, Richmond) that the county had made for him for his Mexican War service, sewed a flag for a local Confederate unit, and turned his picture to the wall.

Thomas served in the western theater, where his reputation
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as a field commander grew. His unyielding stand at the Battle of Chickamauga on September 20, 1863, earned him the sobriquet “Rock of Chickamauga.” His defense of Nashville, Tennessee, and subsequent counterattack, December 15-16, 1864, shattered the Confederate army there.

Thomas never returned to Virginia. After the war, he commanded the Division of the Pacific in San Francisco, California, and died there on March 28, 1870. He is buried in Troy, New York, the home of his wife, Frances Lucretia Kellogg. Thomas’s sisters, eventually more sorry than angry, supported the statue erected to him in Washington, D.C., in 1879.
Erected by Virginia Civil War Trails.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Virginia Civil War Trails series list. A significant historical month for this entry is March 1775.
Location. 36° 38.344′ N, 77° 5.578′ W. Marker is near Newsoms, Virginia, in Southampton County. Marker is at the intersection of Thomaston Road and Chickamauga Drive, on the right when traveling west on Thomaston Road. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Newsoms VA 23874, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. A different marker also named "Thomaston" (a few steps from this marker);
Thomaston Markers. image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bernard Fisher, April 18, 2009
2. Thomaston Markers.
Blackhead Signpost Road (approx. 3˝ miles away); The Hand Site (approx. 3˝ miles away); Virginia Native Tribes/First Americans (approx. 4.3 miles away); Nottoway Indians (approx. 4.4 miles away); General Thomas' Birthplace (approx. 5 miles away); The Rebecca Vaughan House (approx. 5.4 miles away); Southampton County Veterans Memorial (approx. 5.4 miles away).
More about this marker. In the upper center is a photograph of “Gen. George H. Thomas”. On the lower right are three photographs: "Snodgrass House, Thomas’s Headquarters at Chickamauga, Ga., postwar photo by William Henry Jackson.”; “Outer Union lines, Nashville, Tenn., dated Dec. 16, 1864, during the Battle of Nashville”; and “Thomas Statue, Thomas Circle, Washington, D.C., ca. 1911”
Thomaston (private residence). image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bernard Fisher, April 18, 2009
3. Thomaston (private residence).
Credits. This page was last revised on November 14, 2021. It was originally submitted on April 20, 2009, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia. This page has been viewed 2,248 times since then and 172 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on April 20, 2009, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia.

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Dec. 8, 2023