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. Virtualology.com warns that these 19th Century
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HAZEN, William Babcock, soldier, born in West Hartford, Vermont, 27 September, 1830; died in Washington, D. C., 16 January, 1887. He was a descendant of Moses Hazen, noticed above. His parents removed to Ohio in 1833, William was graduated at the United States military academy in 1855, and, after serving against the Indians in California and Oregon, joined the 8th infantry in Texas in 1857. He commanded successfully in five engagements, until, in December, 1859, he was severely wounded in a personal encounter with the Comanches. He was appointed assistant professor of infantry tactics at the United States military academy in February, 1861, 1st lieutenant, 6 April, and pro-meted captain on 14 May. In the autumn of 1861 he raised the 41st Ohio volunteers, of which he became colonel on 29 October, 1861, and commanded in the defence of the Ohio frontier and in operations in Kentucky. On 6 January, 1862, he took command of a brigade and served with distinction at Shiloh and Corinth. In the battle of Stone River, 12 October, 1862, he protected the left wing of the army from being turned by simultaneous attacks in front and flank. He was appointed brigadier-general of volunteers, 29 November, 1862, commanded a brigade in the operations that resulted in the battle of Chickamauga, and, by a well-executed movement on 27 October, at Brown's Ferry, enabled the army at Chattanooga to receive its supplies. He captured eighteen pieces of artillery at Mission Ridge, served through the Atlanta campaign, and in Sherman's march to the sea commanded the 2d division of the 15th corps. He assaulted and captured Fort McAllister, 13 December, 1864, for which service he was promoted a major-general of volunteers the same day. He was in command of the 15th army corps from 19 May till 1 August, 1865. At the end of the war he had received all the brevets in the regular army up to major-general. He was made colonel of the 38th infantry in 1866, was in France during the France-Prussian war, and was United States military attache at Vienna during the Russo-Turkish war. In the interval between those two visits, while stationed at Fort Buford, Dakota, he made charges of fraud against post-traders, which resulted in revelations that were damaging to Sec. Belknap. On 8 December, 1880, he succeeded General Albert J. Meyer as chief signal-officer, with the rank of brigadier-general. His administration was marked by the expedition of Lieutenant A. W. Greely to Lady Franklin bay, and by another to Point Barrow, Alaska, to make meteorological and other observations in co-operation with European nations. (See GREELY, A.W.) In September, 1883, after the return of Lieutenant Garlington's unsuccessful relief expedition, General Hazen urged the secretary of war to despatch a sealer immediately to rescue Greely, and, his recommendation not having been acted upon, he severely censured Sec. Lincoln. In consequence of this, Gel/. Hazen was court-martialed and reprimanded. General Hazen introduced the "cold-wave signal," promoted the use of local and railway weather signals, organized special observations for the cotton-producing states, established frost warnings, and initiated forecasts for vessels coming to this country from Europe. He published "The School and the Army in Germany and France, with a Diary of Siege-Life at Versailles " (New York, 1872); "Barren Lands of the Interior of the United States" (Cincinnati, 1874); and "Narrative of a Military Career" (Boston, 1885).
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