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Brigadier-General Paul A. Oliver, U.S.V.
Brevet Brigadier-General Paul A. Oliver, U.S.V.
Brevet Brigadier-General Paul A. Oliver was born at sea on the 18th
July, 1831, on the ship " Louisiana," owned and commanded by his father,
Captain Paul A. Oliver, who was a native of Philadelphia, and served as
sailing-master in the United States Navy in the War of 1812.
General Oliver was engaged as shipping merchant, and resided at Fort
Hamilton at the time the yellow fever epidemic prevailed in that village
in 1856. He established a hospital, and was made president of the Fort
Hamilton Relief Society, which he organized, and by its efforts the
disease was prevented from spreading to the city of Brooklyn.
In January, 1862, he enlisted as second lieutenant in the Twelfth New York
Infantry, which was assigned to the Third Brigade, First Division, Fifth
Corps, then stationed at Hall's Hill, Virginia. He participated in the
siege of Yorktown and battle of Hanover Court-House; commanded his company
at the battle of Gaines's Mills (where he was wounded), Second Bull Run,
Antietam, and Fredericksburg. In December, 1862, his company was detailed
as head-quarters guard of the Fifth Corps, where it remained to the close
of the war. When General Butterfield was appointed chief of staff of the
Army of the Potomac, under Hooker, Lieutenant Oliver was appointed on his
staff as his aide, and as such served in the campaign ! of
Chancellorsville. In the Gettysburg campaign he was appointed personal
aide to General Meade, and remained on his staff until General Hooker got
command of the Eleventh and Twelfth Corps, when he went with him, and
served on his staff in the battles of Lookout Valley, Lookout Mountain,
Missionary Ridge, and Ringgold. On the Atlanta campaign, in the spring of
1864, he served with General Butterfield, who had command of a division of
the Twentieth Corps, as his chief of staff, in the battles of Resaca,
Carsville, Dallas, New Hope Church, and Marietta. In July, 1864, he
returned to the Army of the Potomac at his own request, and served on the
staff of General Warren, part of the time as acting provost-marshal of the
Fifth Corps. At this time he received the commission of major, and
afterwards lieutenant-colonel of the Fifth New York Veteran Volunteers,
but declined. He participated in the siege of Petersburg and the various
battles,-Yellow Tavern, Weldon Railroad, Hatcher's Run, raid to Bellfield,
and Hicksford. In January he was transferred, by special orders of Grant,
to City Point on special duty, under General M. R. Patrick. On the 8th of
March, 1865, he was brevetted brigadier-general. At the surrender of Lee
he was, as assistant provost-marshal, engaged in paroling the Army of
Northern Virginia, at Appomattox, under the direction of General George H.
Sharpe, assistant provost-marshal, who took the original paroles of the
Army of Northern Virginia to the War Department, Washington, and the
duplicate paroles were taken by General Oliver to Richmond, and handed by
him to Colonel Taylor, General Lee's adjutant-general. The war being
closed, General Oliver tendered his resignation, and was honorably
discharged May 5, 1865.
||General Oliver received honorable
mention by General Butterfield in official report of the Seven Days'
battles, June-July, 1862 (" Official Record," vol. xiv., p. 321);
also for his coolness and assistance at the battle of Bull Run
(official report of Captain William Huson, Twelfth New York
Volunteers, idcm xvi., 477). He also received honorable mention for
brave and intelligent performance of duties as aide-de-camp by
General Hooker in official report of the Chattanooga Ringgold
Campaign (idcm Iv., 325).
Since that time he has been engaged in the manufacture of powder at
Laurel Run, Oliver's Mills, Pennsylvania. General Oliver received
the medal of honor for distinguished services at the battle of
Resaca, May 15, 1864.
Source: Officers of the Volunteer Army and Navy who
served in the Civil War, published by L.R. Hamersly & Co., 1893, 419
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