Clinton A. Cilley

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Clinton Albert Cilley
Born (1837-02-16)February 16, 1837
Rockingham County, New Hampshire
Died May 9, 1900(1900-05-09) (aged 63)
North Carolina
Place of burial Oakwood Cemetery Hickory (Catawba County), North Carolina
Allegiance  United States of America
Service/branch  United States Army
Years of service 1861 - 1866
Rank Major
Brevet Colonel
Unit Minnesota 2nd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry
Battles/wars American Civil War
*Battle of Chickamauga
Awards Medal of Honor
Other work lawyer, judge, politician

Clinton Albert Cilley (February 16, 1837 – May 9, 1900) was a North Carolina lawyer and judge, and a recipient of the Medal of Honor for his actions as an officer in the Union Army at the Battle of Chickamauga in the American Civil War.

Biography[edit]

Cilley joined the 2nd Minnesota Infantry as a sergeant in June 1861, and was commissioned as a second lieutenant six months later. He mustered out in September 1866 with the rank of major and a brevet (honorary promotion) to the rank of colonel.[1]

Cilley moved to western North Carolina at the end of the Civil War and became regional administrator for the Freedmens Bureau. Although he was essentially a carpetbagger, Cilley became very popular as a lawyer in Lenoir, North Carolina, where he was elected one of the town's first mayors. He married Emma Harper, daughter of Congressman James C. Harper.

In 1890 he joined the New Hampshire Society of the Sons of the American Revolution. He was assigned national membership number 7521 and state society number 21.

He died May 9, 1900 and is buried in Oakwood Cemetery Hickory (Catawba County), North Carolina. His grave can be found in Section 2-E, Row 2.

Honors[edit]

The Catawba County Museum of History contains the Clinton Cilley Collection of Civil War artifacts.[2]

Medal of Honor citation[edit]

Rank and organization: Captain, Company C, 2d Minnesota Infantry. Place and date: At Chickamauga, Ga., September 20, 1863. Entered service at: Wasioja, Minn. Birth: Rockingham County, N.H. Date of issue: June 12, 1895.

Citation:

Seized the colors of a retreating regiment and led it into the thick of the attack.

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