Memorial Day Names: Shiloh & Sheridan

Memorial Day–formerly  known as Decoration Day–was first observed on May 30, 1868, shortly after the Civil War, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery, so that the  roots of the holiday were very much entwined with the War Between the States. It’s always celebrated on the last Monday of May–a date close to the day of reunification of the country after the Civil War.

In the course of this deadly and divisive war, there were over a thousand soldiers who reached the rank of general, many of them becoming national heroes, and namesakes for babies born during and after the war. There were countless little Grants and Lees, just as there were Lincolns and Jeffersons and Davises.  Looking at the rolls of officers on both sides, we find some interesting names–both first and last, as well as names attached to battlegrounds– that could still be inspiring today.

UNION GENERALS’ FIRST NAMES

ABSALOM
ADIN
ALBION
ALPHEUS
AMIEL
AUGUST
CASSIUS
CUVIER
DARIUS
EBENEZER
EMERSON
EMORY
ERASMUS
GREEN
GUSTAVUS
ISHAM
JASPER
JEREMIAH
JUSTUS
KENNER
LAFAYETTE
LORENZO
MARCELLUS
NAPOLEON
ORLANDO
ORRIS
PLEASANT
REGIS
ROMEYN
SPEED
SULLIVAN
THEOPHILOUS
TRUMAN
ULYSSES
ZEALOUS

CONFEDERATE GENERALS’ FIRST NAMES

ALPHEUS
ARMISTEAD
BIRKETT
BRAXTON
CADMUS
CARNOT
CLAUDIUS
CULLEN
ELKANAH
EPPA
EVANDER
GUSTAVUS
JUBAL
LEONIDAS
MAXCY (sort of cute)
OTHO
THEOPHOLUS
TURNER
TYREE
ZACHARIAH
ZEBULON

SOME SURNAMES FROM BOTH SIDES

ASHBY
AUGUR
BAIRD
BARNUM
BEE
BERRY
BOWEN
CLAY
CULLUM
DEWEY
DUNCAN
EATON
EGAN
FRAZER
FROST
GRAHAM
LOGAN
MAURY
MAXBY
McCLELLAN
MEADE
PAXTON
PERRY
POE
QUINBY
RIPLEY
ROUSSEAU
SAXTON
SHEPARD
SHERIDAN
SORREL
SPRAGUE
SULLY
SWEENY
TUCKER
VINTON

CIVIL WAR BATTLE-RELATED NAMES

AMELIA (SPRINGS)
ANDERSON
AUBURN
BAXTER
BRISTOE
CHANTILLY
CORINTH
DALTON
DOVER
MARIETTA
McALLISTER
PHILIPPI
SABINE (PASS)
SHILOH
SUMPTER

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11 Responses to “Memorial Day Names: Shiloh & Sheridan”

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MePregnant Says:

May 22nd, 2009 at 1:00 am

MEMORIAL DAY NAMES: SHILOH & SHERIDAN – Baby Name Blog – Nameberry…

Tags: baby names, Civil War battlefields, Civil WAr battles, Civil WAr generals, Civil War names, Confederate generals, Grant, Jefferson Davis, Lee, Memorial Day, Memorial DAy names, Shiloh, Union generals ……

Lola Says:

May 22nd, 2009 at 8:46 am

My Josie was born on May 27, so at least once every 7 years her birthday will be on Memorial Day. I think it’s neat, birthdays on Holidays. (they sort of run in the family. My Pop was Valentines Day, ‘I have two cousins born on Xmas, a pair [twins] on Easter and yet another cousin on the 4rh of July!)

I’m also fascinated by the Civil War and find a lot of things from the late 1800’s quite appealing. From the Union list: August, Cassius, Pleasant, Truman & Ulysses appeal.
From the Confederate list I like: Bee, Berry, Fraser, Frost, Graham, Maxby, Perry, Quinby, Ripley, Sorrel & Sweeny. Of the place names, Auburn & Marietta appeal, even though place names generally don’t appeal to me.

I could happily name two boys & a girl: August, Perry & Marietta!

Awesome list! 🙂

JustADad Says:

May 22nd, 2009 at 10:10 am

I had ancestors who were captured at Shiloh, so I think maybe we’d have to skip that one, although I think it’s a cool name.

rachelmarie Says:

May 22nd, 2009 at 4:30 pm

I don’t remember which side, but there was an Ambrose, too.
Also, Robert E. Lee.
Also, Armistead was a last name.

The only reason I know this stuff is because we recently learned about the Civil War, and read a book about it, “Killer Angels.”

Shelley Says:

May 22nd, 2009 at 7:50 pm

One of my favorite Civil War names is Wade Hampton. (Wade Hampton III was a Confederate cavalry leader.) Both Wade and Hampton would make great first names!

Jenny Says:

May 22nd, 2009 at 8:38 pm

I developed a crush on Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain when we studied Gettysburg in high school, but he was still a colonel at that battle, I think. I know ‘Chamberlain’ is kind of clunky as a first name, but he was super hot. Maybe ‘Chamberlain’ would make a nice middle name.

Rosamund Says:

May 23rd, 2009 at 9:22 am

I like the Civil Wars name of Beauregard. Melanie Wilkes named her son this Margaret Mitchell’s Gone with the Wind.I also like the name Lovejoy , a place name in this same novel.Lovejoy for a girl as a middle name is how I would use it It has such a lovely meaning to it for a new parent.

Natalie Says:

May 25th, 2009 at 9:34 pm

How could you leave off Sherman????? I had an ancestor who named one of his kids Sherman Tecumseh William. 🙂 Also, from the other side, Wheeler, for Fightin’ Joe Wheeler.

linda Says:

May 25th, 2009 at 11:12 pm

As for Sherman, just a matter of taste, I’m afraid–couldn’t include them all. But Wheeler’s a good one.

Amanda Says:

May 26th, 2009 at 6:23 pm

Scarlett O’Hara named her boy Wade Hampton Hamilton because, as Margaret Mitchell noted, it was stylish to name sons after their father’s commanding officers. Maybe that could be a naming inspiration for those with ancestors in the Civil War.

CountryLizB Says:

June 1st, 2009 at 2:33 am

My grandpa is named Robert after his father’s commanding officer.

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