Charles Marshall (colonel)

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Charles Marshall
Colonel Charles Marshall.jpg
Born (1830-10-03)October 3, 1830
Warrenton, Virginia
Died April 19, 1902(1902-04-19) (aged 71)
Baltimore, Maryland
Place of burial Green Mount Cemetery
Baltimore, Maryland
Allegiance  Confederate States of America
Service/branch  Confederate States Army
Years of service 1861–1865
Rank Confederate States of America Colonel.png Colonel
Commands held Military Secretary, Assistant Adjutant General Army of Northern Virginia
Battles/wars American Civil War
Other work Lawyer

Charles Marshall (October 3, 1830 – April 19, 1902) was a Confederate Army officer during the American Civil War. Marshall served as an aide de camp, assistant adjutant general and military secretary to Gen. Robert E. Lee. He was also a cousin of World War II General George Marshall.

Early life[edit]

Marshall was born in Warrenton, Virginia to Alexander John and Maria Rose Taylor Marshall. He was the great nephew of Chief Justice of the United States John Marshall and second cousin of Col. James K. Marshall who was killed during Pickett's Charge. Charles Marshall was educated at the Richard M. Smith School in and the Warren Green Academy in Warrenton before graduating from the University of Virginia with a Master's Degree with high honors in 1848. He served as professor of mathematics at Indiana University from 1850 to 1852. Upon returning to Virginia, Marshall studied law. In 1853, he moved to Baltimore, Maryland where he was admitted to the bar and began practice at the law firm of William Schley. In December 1856, he married Emily Andrews, daughter of Mexican War hero Colonel Timothy Patrick Andrews and sister of Richard Snowden Andrews. Marshall and his wife had one daughter. Emily Andrews Marshall died in 1858.[1]

Civil War[edit]

Lee, a long-time family friend, appointed Marshall to his personal staff on March 21, 1862 with the rank of captain. Marshall served as Lee's aide-de-camp and was present with Lee during all the major battles of the Army of Northern Virginia. He was subsequently promoted to major, lieutenant colonel and colonel. He was responsible for the writing of Lee's after-action reports during the War. Marshall accompanied Lee at the surrender at the Battle of Appomattox Courthouse and drafted Lee's acceptance of the terms of surrender. He also located the Wilmer McLean house where the surrender ceremony took place and drafted Lee's "Farewell Order" to the Army of Northern Virginia.[2]

Postbellum activities[edit]

Following the War, Marshall returned to Baltimore and continued his legal practice, becoming one of the leading attorneys in Baltimore. Marshall delivered the dedication addresses for the monuments to Lee in Richmond, Virginia and Ulysses S. Grant in New York City.[3]

Marshall remarried in December 1866, to Sara Rebecca Nicholls Snowden, daughter of Col. Thomas Snowden. They had five sons, including Attorney Hudson Snowden Marshall.[4]

Marshall's papers were later published in a book called Lee's Aide-de-Camp, edited by Sir Frederick Maurice and in a later edition by Gary W. Gallagher.

Marshall died in Baltimore, Maryland from a stroke.

In popular culture[edit]

Marshall is portrayed by Tim Ruddy in the film Gettysburg and by John D. Bert in the related film Gods and Generals. In a much earlier film, Abraham Lincoln, a 1930 United Artists release directed by D.W. Griffith, Marshall is portrayed by Henry B. Walthall.

Marshall is a supporting character in the 1992 science fiction-alternate history novel The Guns of the South by Harry Turtledove.


  1. ^ Hall, p. 673.
  2. ^ Hall, pp.673–74.
  3. ^ Hall, pp.673–74
  4. ^ Hall, pp. 674.


  • Hall, Clayton Colman. Baltimore: Its History and Its People, Lewis Historical Publishing Company, 1912.

Further reading[edit]

  • Marshall, Charles. Lee's Aide-de-Camp, edited by Sir Frederick Maurice and Gary W. Gallagher, Bison Books, 2000. ISBN 978-0-8032-8262-9

Bowden, Scott, and Ward, Bill. "Last Chance for Victory: Robert E. Lee and the Gettysburg Campaign," Da Capo Books, 2001.

External links[edit]