J.E.B. Stuart

James Ewell Brown Stuart

James Ewell Brown Stuart

Although the most renowned general for the Confederates was obviously Robert E. Lee, but there were many others that contributed to the war just as much, if not more. Generals such as Jeb Stuart were quality generals as well, they just may not have had the near celebrity status and public support that Lee had.

Stuart’s real name was James Ewell Brown Stuart and was born a militarily prestigious family with his great grandfather serving as a Major in the Revolutionary War and his father fighting in the War of 1812 [1]. Born in Laurel Hill, Virginia, he was destined to attend the infamous West Point military academy and continue on to a stellar military career.

Jeb Stuart really came to fame during the Bleeding Kansas period as a 1st Leutinent for the 1st Cavalry and he also carried out Robert E. Lee’s orders to crush John Brown’s rebellion [2]. He then resigned his command in the Union Army in May of 1861 to join the Confederacy with his friend from West Point friend, Robert E. Lee [3]. Upon his entry to the Confederate Army, he was placed under Stonewall Jackson where he was promptly promoted to Colonel of the Cavalry for the Shenandoah Army [4].

His fame in the Civil War really began to take off with his famous ride around the Union Army between June 12 and June 15 [5]. This was a scouting excursion to find out the location, size, and strength of the Union Army in the area. It was also a severe blow to the pride and reputation of General Cooke of the Union Cavalry. Due to his valor and military tactics, he was promoted to Major General over all cavalry in the Army of North Virginia on July 25. His tactics proved useful to the Confederate cause throughout the war

Robert E. Lee is without a doubt the “Hero of the South” from the Civil War, but I feel like due credit is owed to commanders like Jeb Stuart. Without Stuart, many of Lee’s campaigns would have been vastly less successful and he might not be the hero he is today. Lets all give a hand for Jeb.

  1. http://www.civilwar.org/education/history/biographies/jeb-stuart.html
  2. http://www.civilwarhome.com/stuartbi.htm
  3. http://www.civilwar.org/education/history/biographies/jeb-stuart.html
  4. http://militaryhistory.about.com/od/americancivilwar/p/jeb-stuart.htm
  5. http://militaryhistory.about.com/od/americancivilwar/p/jeb-stuart.htm

11 thoughts on “J.E.B. Stuart

  1. bgoodin1 says:

    I like this post, it’s an interesting view on someone other than Lee. I do believe that when it came to leaders, the South had a clear advantage with Lee, Jackson, and now Stuart. Where were most of his campaigns at? I do know he fought at Gettysburg, but I do not know where else he may have also fought.


  2. mmillsapuca says:

    Your point is well taken that great men don’t stand alone. For every venerated person there are is a supporting cast that helps preserve his or her place in history. Throughout the class we have discussed how many soldiers sympathetic to the Confederate cause lined their affection for liberty and property with that of the Revolutionary War. In your readings did you come across anything suggesting that this logic compelled Stuart to defect to the South?


  3. gkamarunas1 says:

    Good post! I was wondering however, what where the reasons Jeb sided with the confederacy over the union? Was it slavery? home? What was his command style? Was he a stand offish commander such as McClellan? he is a very interesting man.


    • Terra Lain Votaw says:

      This was the same question I had. I know that Lee was more closely tied to his state then his country, and he stayed with his state throughout the course of the war. Did Jeb have similar reasoning for siding with the Confederacy?


  4. moonsierra says:

    It is interesting to learn about less-celebrated Civil War generals. I do not think I have ever hear of Jeb Stuart, so I am glad I got to learn a little more about him. I wonder how many other Confederate commanders resigned their post as Union commanders when their home state seceded or their friends resigned. One of the redeeming qualities of the Confederate war effort was the outstanding military command at its disposal. It seems like history remembers Confederate military leadership, like General Lee and Stonewall Jackson, more fondly than Union military commanders, like General Sherman. What major military engagements did he assist in? Did he survive the war? Did he have any major battle experience prior to the Bleeding Kansas incident?


  5. jmccloud1993 says:

    I really enjoyed reading your blog post, Jarod. I completely agree that General Robert E. Lee has taken the spotlight away from all of the other brilliant leaders and soldiers that fought for the South during the Civil War. I posted earlier this semester about how overlooked Stonewall Jackson has been by people today, so I can easily relate to what you mentioned in your post. Before reading your post, I did not know much about J.E.B. Stuart. Clearly, he was a very influential leader for the Confederacy that fought and won in many important battles during the Civil War. For further discussion, what were some of the major battles that Stuart fought in? Was there a battle that really defined his military career? How was he viewed by the soldiers that he was in charge of? Please let me know. Good post.


  6. wreed1 says:

    Good post on J.E.B. Stuart! Prior to this post, I knew very little about General Stuart and his military background. I agree that General Stuart should be mentioned more for his contributions to the Confederacy in the Civil War. Had he not died during the war, maybe he would have been noted more for his role in the Confederate army.


  7. dberry20 says:

    I really enjoyed reading this post. I hadn’t really heard much on Stuart prior to reading this so I definitely learned a lot from it. Without Stuart’s contributions I wonder if the Confederacy under Lee would’ve enjoyed some of the same successes that they did. What do you think? I think that without him going on scouting excursions, the Confederacy wouldn’t have been able to prepare the same way. They would’ve lacked that crucial knowledge regarding the size of Union forces and where they were located. Again, very good post!


  8. mpthomas10 says:

    Interesting post. As has been mentioned, for every Lee, there are many people like Stuart that contributed to the fame. At what battles did he serve? And aside from his famed scouting excursion, what other achievements did he have that contributed to his fame?


  9. jacobaloweryuca says:

    I have never heard much about J.E.B. Stuart, and this post definitely has me interested. I was impressed immediately by his 3 day scouting mission. How exactly would that type of mission be executed? I know Stuart was sent out to find the location, strength, and size of Union forces, but how did Stuart manage to do this? I really enjoyed this post, and I am left with another interesting Civil War figure to research. Thanks!


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