Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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PUTNAM, Haldimand Sumner, soldier, born in Cornish, New Hampshire, 15 October, 1835; died near Fort Wagner, South Carolina, 18 July, 1863. He was graduated at the United States military academy in 1857, and entered the army in July as brevet 2d lieutenant of topographical engineers. From that time till a few months previous to the civil war he was engaged in explorations and surveys in the west. When the war began he was summoned to Washington and intrusted with important despatches for Fort Pickens. He accomplished his mission, but, while returning to the north, was seized by the Confederates at Montgomery, Alabama, and imprisoned for several days. On his release he was placed on General Irvin McDowell's staff, participated in the battle of Bull Run, and gained the brevet of major for gallantry. In October he went to his native state and organized the 7th New Hampshire regiment, of which he became colonel in December, 1861. It was stationed during the first year of its service at Fort Jefferson, on Tortugas island, and afterward at St. Augustine, Florida, and in South Carolina. In 1863 Colonel Putnam commanded a brigade in the Stono inlet expedition, and in the capture of Morris island. In the assault on Fort Wagner, 18 July, 1863, where he led the second storming column, he was killed on the parapet of the work while rallying his men. He was made brevet colonel, United States army, 18 July, 1863. For about four months preceding his death he was acting brigadier-general.
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