History marker to honor Augusta native who supported Union in Civil War

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 A historical marker will be dedicated Friday to an Augusta native who, as a Civil War general, was instrumental in defeating the Confederacy.

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Quartermaster Gen. Montgomery Meigs briefly lived in Augusta as a child. As an adult living in Philadelphia, he became a staunch Union supporter and quartermaster general. He also was an architect and created Arlington Cemetery.  A historical marker on the 600 block of Broad Street will be dedicated to Meigs.  SPECIAL
SPECIAL
Quartermaster Gen. Montgomery Meigs briefly lived in Augusta as a child. As an adult living in Philadelphia, he became a staunch Union supporter and quartermaster general. He also was an architect and created Arlington Cemetery. A historical marker on the 600 block of Broad Street will be dedicated to Meigs.

Quartermaster Gen. Montgomery C. Meigs’ story is one of 15 in a series of markers the Georgia Historical Society will erect to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Civil War.

“We wanted to tell some new stories about the Civil War that had not been told previously in a public way through markers,” said Todd Groce, the president of the Georgia Historical Society.

Meigs’ story will help tell the story of Southerners who sympathized with the Union.

Support for either side moved back and forth, Groce said. Sometimes people switched sides based on who was winning, or as people began to lose faith. Meigs was born in the South, but never wavered in his support for the federal government and the Union.

“He had a huge impact on the history of the United States,” Groce said.

Meigs was born in the 600 block of Broad Street, near where the marker now stands, on May 3, 1816. His father, Charles Delucena Meigs, was in residency at the time and later became an renowned obstetrician. (His grandfather, Josiah Meigs, had become the first president of the University of Georgia 15 years earlier.)

While Montgomery was still very young, the Meigs family moved to Philadelphia.

Meigs graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and was assigned to the Army Corps of Engineers, where he designed many of Washington, D.C.’s, well-known engineering feats, among which were the Washington Aqueduct and the Cabin John Bridge, the longest single masonry arch in the world until the 20th century, according to the Georgia Historical Society.

He also engineered the wings and the dome on the U.S. Capitol building.

During the Civil War, Meigs became quartermaster general and was responsible for supplying the Union Army with food and clothing.

When the estate belonging to Robert E. Lee’s wife was confiscated by the federal government for delinquent property taxes, Meigs ordered the grounds to be turned into a national military cemetery. His intention was to ensure Lee never returned to his former home and Lee never attempted to reclaim the property.

It became Arlington National Cemetery and is where Meigs and his son are now buried.

“I think it’s just an interesting story,” Groce said.

Meig’s great-great-great nephew, also Gen. Montgomery Meigs, will speak at the dedication ceremony, which will be held at noon Friday.

“It’s an honor to come down and be part of the memorial ceremony and give him more credit for what he did,” Meigs said.

The marker’s text and location, along with that of all historical markers across Georgia, can be found in the Georgia Historical Society’s database at www.georgiahistory.com. Visitors to the site can create a custom designed driving tour based on a variety of topics, such as military history. Or, they can download an app that will pinpoint nearby historical markers.

Comments (22)

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just an opinion
2123
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just an opinion 12/07/12 - 02:34 am
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4

We are going to what?

I don't understand. Why?

F4therTime
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F4therTime 12/07/12 - 09:29 am
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Huh?

Unpublished

Why are you honoring someone that buried dead soldiers on someone's illegally consfiscated land so they wouldn't ever come home? Sounds like a jerk to me...

Riverman1
70562
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Riverman1 12/07/12 - 09:49 am
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2

Turn the ground over and salt it

"Meigs was born on the 600 block of Broad Street, near where the marker now stands, on May 3, 1816."

We need to find the exact location, destroy any structures present, turn the ground over and salt it.

"There was a land of Cavaliers and Cotton Fields called the Old South. Here in this pretty world, Gallantry took its last bow. Here was the last ever to be seen of Knights and their Ladies Fair, of Master and of Slave. Look for it only in books, for it is no more than a dream remembered, a Civilization gone with the wind.”

OpenCurtain
10049
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OpenCurtain 12/07/12 - 08:59 pm
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Comment retraction

Clearing up some facts see last comment below

F4therTime
4656
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F4therTime 12/07/12 - 10:28 am
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They also forgot to add

Unpublished

The soldiers that buried the dead at Arlington also looted Lee's property. Wonder why I only hear of how bad the South was. While I don't condone slavery at all it was only a issue to northerners after southerners refused to pay the high tariffs they wanted to impose so they could make money off of goods they had no hand in producing...hmmm sounds kind of familiar...

Mr. Thackeray
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Mr. Thackeray 12/07/12 - 10:33 am
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9

You folks posting above are

You folks posting above are WAY out of line! Here is a man who chose to serve his country and NOT forgo his sworn oath of allegiance to join a rebel cause!

Fiat_Lux
13863
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Fiat_Lux 12/07/12 - 10:57 am
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2

Now, Mr. Thackeray's comment above shows...

...a serious neglect of being informed. What Meigs did deserved to be condemned, just as those who approved and supported his actions deserved the same. The United States savaged the South, all the while proclaiming that we were being welcomed back into the "Union" with open arms, as brothers. What a crock that was. Exploitation of the South has been going on continuously almost from the beginnings of the nation itself.

Meigs planned and executed the petty, spiteful vengeance of a rapacious government against a good, honorable and just man. He was small-minded and mean-spirited, and born here or not, he was nothing more than a damn Yankee.

Meigs' marker should be a stopping point for the incontinent.

Deployed
413
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Deployed 12/07/12 - 11:18 am
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2

"While Montgomery was still

"While Montgomery was still very young, the Meigs family moved to Philadelphia."

He may have been born here, but he was raised yankee. Put the marker in Philadelphia.

justputtin
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justputtin 12/07/12 - 08:19 pm
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2

Seriously?

What the heck is going on? Ask the present military men and women what would happen to them if they got caught doing this! This is absurd! And Thackeray, you are so off base you're not even on the same ball field! Total absurdity and an injustice to those that served honorably!

justputtin
1382
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justputtin 12/07/12 - 11:22 am
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Deployed

Agree 100%. Thank you for your service!

justputtin
1382
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justputtin 12/07/12 - 11:24 am
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Fiat lux

That last line was brutal.....................but I like it!

OpenCurtain
10049
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OpenCurtain 12/07/12 - 11:32 am
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Read Up.

While the winners write history as they wish, True Historians try to make amends later.

The Northern Army of arsonists, rapists, looters, murders of civilian women and children and more had several prison camps far worse that Andersonville.

Quoting from http://www.censusdiggins.com/civil_war_prisons.html"

"CAMP DOUGLAS
The handling of the dead rivals stories of Nazi Germany. The largest mass grave in the Western Hemisphere is filled with....the bodies of Camp Douglas dead, 4200 known and 1800 unknown. No one should be allowed to speak of Andersonville until they have absorbed the horror of Douglas."

Now Consider This
Any UNION General who was a Quarter Master would have had to decide where to send food, clothing and medical supplies.

We all need to learn the full history of the civil war, not the edited winners version.

"The greatest evil does not result from people zealous for God. It results when people are convinced there is no God to whom they must answer. "

F4therTime
4656
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F4therTime 12/07/12 - 12:07 pm
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Meigs...

Unpublished

Supplied Sherman in Savannah...so he is just as responsible for the rapes, looting and murders of innocents just as much as Sherman.

Fiat_Lux
13863
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Fiat_Lux 12/07/12 - 12:40 pm
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He was a very bad man

How Todd Groce and the Georgia Historical Society decided to honor him in our state, after what he did to this state, is probably an object lesson in obsequience. But then again, they may be so consumed with PC that they just grin and drool.

Sweet son
8235
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Sweet son 12/07/12 - 12:44 pm
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2

Slap in the Face!

I love all of the comments supporting Philadelphia as the location for anything to do with Mr. Meigs. He was a Yankee and an evil one at that!

Jake
30337
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Jake 12/07/12 - 01:43 pm
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2

History

History is a wonderful thing, even if you don't like what happened.
Having lived in Augusta for almost 30yrs, the above comments are to be expected.

OpenCurtain
10049
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OpenCurtain 12/07/12 - 08:58 pm
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0

Comment retraction

Comment retraction

Clearing up some facts

Dixieman
10354
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Dixieman 12/07/12 - 02:48 pm
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Dixieman has 2 billion points

Philadelphia. Ever been there? An appropriate punishment for this traitor, having his memorial sited there.

OpenCurtain
10049
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OpenCurtain 12/07/12 - 08:57 pm
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Comment retraction

Comment retraction

Clearing up some facts see below

Sean Moores
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Sean Moores 12/07/12 - 03:02 pm
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@ Fiat et al

This is from a 2011 story:
http://chronicle.augusta.com/latest-news/2011-02-07/civil-war-sesquicent...

But newer markers reflect how historians' views of the war have broadened, Groce said.
"There was nothing about African Americans, nothing about women, nothing about politics, nothing about the home front. Today, we have a much broader view of war and its impact on society," Groce said.

seenitB4
72625
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seenitB4 12/07/12 - 04:06 pm
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I understand it is history BUT

Something tells me this marker won't be there for very long....need to put it up north...above the Mason/Dixon line...jmo

rmwhitley
5081
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rmwhitley 12/07/12 - 05:24 pm
0
0

meigs was

Unpublished

nothing more than a low-life turncoat who disgraces the South for having been from here!

Jake
30337
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Jake 12/07/12 - 07:03 pm
2
4

Narrow minds

Given the rationale of many who have posted, I suppose the memorials honoring the Confederate troops who served and died at Gettysburg should be removed because, after all, Pennsylvania is "Yankee" land.

OpenCurtain
10049
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OpenCurtain 12/07/12 - 08:57 pm
1
1

Retracting my earlier comments

Comment retraction

Clearing up some facts

It seems he was only born here, and not really even raised here.

"Meigs, Montgomery Cunningham (May 3, 1816 - Jan. 2, 1892), soldier and engineer, was born in Augusta, Georgia. During his childhood the family moved from Georgia to Philadelphia, where he matriculated at the University of Pennsylvania in 1831. "

He later entered the United States Military Academy, graduating in 1836, fifth in his class.

While born a Southerner, he spent over 7/8's of his life in the North. He never entered WEST POINT as a Southerner, but as a Northerner.

He received his Appointment from a Northern Congressman.

Therefore He could never have betrayed the South or Augusta, he never really belonged here.

BUT Why we are honoring him here?
When all the work he did, was done up north?

Does it have to do with future Donations, or are we going to try seek Historical grants or something?

BTW: The 600 block area lays along side a bunch of Strip joints and Night clubs. Interesting place to put a historical marker.
Maybe fitting none the less in the this case.

John Locke
241
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John Locke 12/07/12 - 09:32 pm
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3

Ignorant Fools

Thank God for men like Meigs who helped end slavery and teach men like Lee what it is like to suffer even a little. He planted the young men of the US in Lee's front yard because Lee was a traitor to his country. I'm especially glad Meigs was born here -- it is oh so fitting.

seenitB4
72625
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seenitB4 12/08/12 - 07:34 am
2
1

Narrow minds & ignorant fools you say...

Mr Locke & Jake .....a tad strong don't you think....

Now would I post that in a Northern paper...naahhh don't think so...
I was thinking why a marker really matters to the Augusta folks...after all the war has been over for over 100 years....many generations ago...
but I see why.....this year has been a double whammy in some ways....the beloved college name has been ripped away like a bandage on an old sore....the choices were slim & none on the name....
I think...who pays the taxes in this county for years----who rides the roads in this county----who walked the dirt trails---watched it grow---wept in the sad times & enjoyed the good times....why it was the common folks--the everyday folks---the people who love the place....& now a slap in the face ......can't name our college but yet we are to rejoice in this marker in the middle of dad burn Broad St...
everything has gone with the wind....

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