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Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1887-1889 and 1999. warns that these 19th Century biographies contain errors and bias. We rely on volunteers to edit the historic biographies on a continual basis. If you would like to edit this biography please submit a rewritten biography in text form . If acceptable, the new biography will be published above the 19th Century Appleton's Cyclopedia Biography citing the volunteer editor

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McCook Family

McCook Family History

McCOOK, Daniel, soldier, born in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, 20 June, 1798; died near Buffington's island, Ohio, 21 July, 1863. He was the son of George McCook, an Irishman of Scotch descent, who was concerned in movements of the " United Irishmen" about 1780, and on their failure fled to the United States. Daniel was educated at Jefferson college and removed to New Lisbon, and then to Carrollton, Ohio. At the beginning of the civil war, although sixty-three years of age, he offered his services to the government, was commissioned major, and fell mortally wounded while leading an advance party to oppose and intercept General John Morgan in his raid. His wife, MARTHA LATIMER, born in Washington, Pennsylvania, 8 March, 1802; died in New Lisbon, Ohio, 10 November, 1879, was married in 1818. Her courage and intelligence greatly influenced their ten sons who were in the National army.

Daniel's brother, John McCook, physician, born in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, 21 February, 1806; died in Washington, D. C., 11 October, 1865, was educated at Jefferson college and graduated in the Medical school of Cincinnati. He practiced medicine for many years in New Lisbon, and afterward in Steubenville, Ohio, and during the civil war served for a time as a volunteer surgeon. He died at the headquarters of his son, General Anson G. McCook, in Washington, D. C., during a visit. His wife, CATHERINE JULIA SHELDON, born in Hartford, Connecticut, 21 May, 1807; died in Steubenville, Ohio, 11 March, 1865, was noted for her gift of song. His five sons enlisted in the National army. These two families have been called the "fighting McCooks," and are familiarly distinguished as the "tribe of Dan" and the " tribe of John."

Daniel's son, George Wythe McCook, lawyer, born in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, 21 November, 1821; died in Steubenville. Ohio, 28 December, 1877, was graduated at Ohio university, studied law with Edwin M. Stanton, and afterward became his partner. He served as an officer in the 3d Ohio regiment throughout the Mexican war, and returned as its commander. He was one of the first four brigadier-generals selected by the governor of Ohio to command the troops from that state in the civil war, but, owing to impaired health from his Mexican service, was prevented from accepting that post. He organized and commanded for short 1)e-riods several Ohio registrants. In 1871 he was the Democratic candidate for governor of the state. He was at one time attorney-general of the state and edited the first volume of " Ohio State Reports."

Another son, Robert McCook, Latimer, soldier, born in New Lisbon, Ohio, 28 December, 1827; died near Salem, Alabama, 6 August, 1862, studied law and removed to Cincinnati, where he secured a large practice. He organized the 9th Ohio regiment in 1861, became its colonel, and commanded a brigade in the West Virginia campaign under McClellan. His brigade was then transferred to the Army of the Ohio, and took an active part in the battle of Mill Spring, Kentucky, 19 January, 1862, where he was severely wounded. The Confederate forces were driven from their lines by a bayonet charge of McCook's brigade, and so closely pursued that their organization was destroyed. He was promoted brigadier-general of volunteers, 21 March, 1862, rejoined his command before his wound had healed, and was shot by Confederate guerillas while lying helpless in an ambulance.


Alexander McDowell McCook
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Another son, Alexander McDowell McCook, soldier, born in Columbiana county, Ohio, 22 April, 1831, was graduated at the United States military academy in 1852, and assigned to the 3d infantry. After a brief service in garrison he was engaged against the Apaches in New Mexico until 1857, and from 12 February, 1858, till 24 April, 1861, was assistant instructor of infantry tactics at West Point. On 6 December, 1858, he became 1st lieutenant. At the beginning of the civil war he was appointed colonel of the 1st Ohio regiment, and in April, 1861, he was mustering and disbursing officer at Columbus, Ohio. He commanded his regiment at the first battle of Bull Run, and for his services there was brevetted major. He was appointed brigadier general of volunteers on 3 September, 1861, and commanded a division of the Army of the Ohio in the Tennessee and Mississippi campaign, lie was brevetted lieutenant-colonel at the capture of Nashville, 3 March, 1862, and colonel on 7 April, 1862, for services at Shiloh.

On 17 July, 1862, he became major-general of volunteers and was placed in command of the 20th army corps, with which he served during the campaigns of Perryville, Stone River, Tullahoma, and Chickamauga. He engaged in the defense of Washington on 11 and 12 July, 1864, was in the middle military division from November, 1864, till February, 1865, and in command of eastern Arkansas from February till May of the latter year. He received the brevet of brigadier-general, United States army, on 13 March, 1865, for gallant and meritorious services at Perrysville, Kentucky, and also on the same date that of major-general, United States army, for services in the field during the war. He investigated Indian affairs with a joint committee of congress from May till October, 1865, and at the close of the war was made lieutenant-colonel of the 26th infantry. On 15 December, 1880, he became colonel of the 6th infantry, and he is now (1888) stationed at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, as commandant of the school of instruction for infantry and cavalry.

Another son, Daniel McCook, soldier, born in Carrollton, Ohio, '22 July, 1834" died near Kenesaw Mountain, Georgia, 21 July, 1864, was graduated at Alabama university, Florence, Alabama, in 1858, studied law in Steubenville, Ohio, and, after admission to the bar, removed to Leavenworth, Kansas, where he formed a partnership with William T. Sherman and Thomas Ewing. When the civil war began the office was closed, and all of the partners soon became general officers. Mr. McCook was captain of a local company, with which he volunteered, and as part of the 1st Kansas regiment served under General Nathaniel Lyon at Wilson's Creek. Subsequently he was chief of staff of the 1st division of the Army of the Ohio in the Shiloh campaign, and became colonel of the 52d Ohio infantry in the summer of 1862. He was at once assigned to the command of a brigade under General William T. Sherman, and continued to serve with the Army of the Cumberland. He was selected by Gen. Sherman to lead the assault that was made on Kenesaw Mountain in July, 1864, and took his brigade directly up to the Confederate works. Just before the assault he calmly recited to his men the stanza from Macaulay's poem of "ttoratius" beginning "Then how may man die better than facing fearful odds?" He had reached the top of the enemy's works, and was encouraging his men to follow him, when he was fatally wounded. For the courage that he displayed in this assault he was promoted to the full rank of brigadier-general, to date from 16 July, 1864, but survived only a few days.

Another son, Edwin Stanton McCook, soldier, born in Carrollton, Ohio, 26 March, 1837; died in Yankton, Dak., 11 September, 1873, was educated at the United States naval academy, but when the civil war began raised a company for the 31st Illinois regiment, of which his friend John A. Logan was colonel. He served with this regiment at Fort Henry and Fort Donelson, where he was severely wounded. In his promotion he succeeded General Logan and followed him in the command of his regiment, brigade, and division, throughout the Vicksburg and other campaigns under Grant, and in the Chattanooga and Atlanta campaigns, and the march to the sea under Sherman. He was brevetted brigadier-general and major-general of volunteers on 13 March, 1865, for his services in these campaigns. Gem McCook was three times severely wounded, but survived the war. While acting governor of Dakota and presiding over a public meeting, he was shot and killed by a man in the audience.

Another son, Charles Morris McCook, born in Carrollton, Ohio, 13 November, 1843; died in Virginia, 21 July, 1861, was a member of the freshman class at Kenyon college when the war began, and volunteered as a private in the 2d Ohio regiment. He was killed at the battle of Bull Run, in sight of his father, who had volunteered as a nurse.--Another son, John James, soldier, born in Carrollton. Ohio, 22 May, 1845, was also a student at Kenyon when the war began, and after completing his freshman year enlisted in the 6th OMo cavalry. He served through the war, attaining the rank of captain and aide-de-camp in September, 1863. He was brevetted major for gallant and meritorious services in action at Shady Grove, Virginia, where he was dangerously wounded, and lieutenant-colonel and colonel for his services during the war. Colonel McCook is now (1887) practicing law in New York city.

John's son, Edward Moody McCook, soldier, born in Steubenville, Ohio, 15 June, 1833, received a common-school education, and was one of the earliest settlers in the Pike's Peak region, where he went to practice law. He represented that district in the legislature of Kansas before the division of the territories. Mr. McCook was temporarily in Washington just before the civil war, and, by a daring feat as a volunteer secret agent for the government, won such approbation that he was appointed in the regular army as 2d lieutenant of the 1st cavalry, 8 May, 1861. He became 1st lieutenant. 17 July, 1862. His brevets in the regular army were 1st lieutenant, 7 April, 1862, for Shiloh, Tennessee ; captain, 8 October, 1862, for Perrysville, Kentucky ; major, 20 September, 1863, for Chickamauga, Georgia ; lieutenant-colonel, 27 January, 1864, for service during the cavalry operations in east Tennessee; colonel, 13 March, 1865, for the capture of Sehna, Alabama, and also on that date brigadier-general for gallant and meritorious service in the field. He also was commissioned brigadier-general of volunteers on 27 April, 1864, and brevetted major-general, 13 March, 1865.

General McCook's most difficult and dangerous service was in penetrating the enemy's lines by way of diversion previous to Sherman's march to the sea. he resigned his commission in 1866 to accept the appointment of United States minister to the Sandwich islands, which he held until 1869. He was twice appointed governor of Colorado territory by President Grant.--Another son of the first John, Anson George, soldier, born in Steubenville, Ohio, 10 October, 1835, received a common-school education at New Lisbon, Ohio, and went while still a youth to California in an overland train. He remained on the Pacific coast several years, returned, and studied law at Steubenville in the office of Stanton and McCook, and had just been admitted to the bar at, the beginning of the civil war. On the first call for troops he entered the service as captain in the 2d Ohio infantry, and as such served in the first battle of Bull Run. At the reorganization of his regiment for three years, he was made major, and he subsequently became its lieutenant-colonel and colonel, serving in the Army of the Cumberland under Buell, Rosecrans, and Thomas. He was also with Sherman in the Atlanta campaign, commanding a brigade part of the time, especially at the battle of Peach Tree Creek near Atlanta. When the regiment was mustered out at the expiration of its service he was made colonel of the 194th Ohio, ordered to the valley of Virginia, and assigned to command a brigade. At the close of the war he was brevetted brigadier-general of volunteers for gallant and meritorious services. From 1865 till 1873 he resided in Steubenville, Ohio, as United States assessor of internal revenue, and then removed to New York city. He was elected to congress from New York as a Republican, holding his seat from 1877 till 1883, and serving on the military committee. He is now (1888) secretary of the United States senate.

Another son of John, Henry Christopher McCook, clergyman, born in New Lisbon, Ohio, 3 July, 1837, after learning the printer's trade, and teaching for several years, was graduated at Jefferson college, Pennsylvania, in 1859. He studied theology privately and in Western theological seminary at Alleghany, Pennsylvania, and after serving for nine months as 1st lieutenant and chaplain in the army, held pastorates at Clinton, Illinois, and St. Louis, Missouri During this period he was active as a leader in Sunday-school movements. In 1869 he became pastor of the Seventh Presbyterian church of Philadelphia, now known as the Tabernacle Presbyterian church. Dr. McCook is vice-president of the American entomological society, and of the Academy of natural sciences in Philadelphia, in whose proceedings he has published numerous papers upon the habits and industry of American ants and spiders. The degree of D. D. was conferred on him by Lafayette in 1880. He is the author of "Object and Outline Teaching" (St. Louis, 1871); "The Last Year of Christ's Ministry" (Philadelphia, 1871); "The Last Days of Jesus" (1872) ; "The Tercentenary Book," entitled (1873);" The Mound-Making Ants of the Alleghenies" (1877) ; " Historic Ecclesiastical Emblems of Pan-Presbyterianism" (1880) ; "The Natural History of the Agricultural Ant of Texas" (1880) ; "Honey and Occident Ants" (1882): "Tenants of an Old Farm" (New York, 1884); "The Women Friends of Jesus" (1884) ; "The Gospel in Nature" (Philadelphia, 1887); and "American Spiders and their Spinning-Work" (1888).--

Another son, Roderick Sheldon McCook, naval officer, born in New Lisbon, Ohio, 10 March, 1839; died in Vine-land, New Jersey, 13 February, 1886, was graduated at the United States naval academy in 1859. He was appointed lieutenant, 31 August, 1861, lieutenant-commander, 25 December, 1865, and commander, 25 September, 1873. During the civil war he took part in various engagements on the James river, in the sounds of North Carolina, and in both Fort Fisher fights, and commanded a battery of naval howitzers at New Berne, 14 March, 1862, where he was highly commended in the official dispatches. In this conflict he received the surrender of a Confederate regiment of infantry, probably the only surrender of this character that occurred in the civil war. During his service on the monitors at Fort Fisher he seriously injured his health. His last service was in lighthouse duty on Ohio river. Failing ***Ul health, he was retired fronl active service, 23 February, 1885.--

Another son, John James McCook, clergyman, born in New Lisbon, Ohio, 4 February, 1543, was graduated at Trinity college, Hartford, Connecticut, in 1563. He began the study of mediciue, but abandoned it to enter the Protestant Episcopal ministry. He served during a short campaign in West Virginia as lieutenant in the 1st Virginia volunteers, a regiment recruited almost exclusively from Ohio. He has held pastorates in Detroit, Michigan, and East Hartford, Connecticut, and since 1883 has been professor of modern languages in Trinity college, he was editor of the "Church Weekly." is a frequent contributor to periodicals, and is the author of " Pat and the Council" (New York, 1870).

Edited Appletons Encyclopedia, Copyright © 2001 VirtualologyTM

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