Henry Bertram

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Henry Bertram
(Emil Gustave Victor Beeger)
Born (1825-10-05)October 5, 1825
Ueckermünde, Prussia
Died September 25, 1878(1878-09-25) (aged 52)
Juneau, Wisconsin
Allegiance United States United States of America
Union Army
Service/branch  United States Army
Years of service 1846–1851, 1861–1865
Rank Union Army colonel rank insignia.png Colonel
Union Army brigadier general rank insignia.svg Brevet Brigadier General
Unit 2nd U.S. Artillery
Commands held 20th Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry
1st Bde, 1st Div, Army of the Frontier
Bertram's Brigade

Mexican-American War
American Civil War

Other work hotel proprietor, sheriff

Henry (Heinrich) Bertram (October 5, 1825 – September 25, 1878) was a Prussian immigrant to the United States who was a general in the Union Army during the American Civil War. He served in the Trans-Mississippi and Western Theaters.

Betram was born in Prussia as Emil Gustav Victor Beeger.[1] Sometime before 1846 he immigrated to the United States. He joined the U.S. Army under the Americanized named Henry Beeger in 1846 and served in the Mexican War. In the 2nd U.S. Artillery he rose to the rank of sergeant on August 21, 1846 but deserted the army four and a half years later on January 20, 1851.

Sometime before 1861 he changed his name to Henry Bertram, presumably to escape any connections to his earlier army desertion. On June 29, 1861, under his new name, Bertram enlisted in the 3rd Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry as a first lieutenant. By July 31, 1861 he had risen to lieutenant colonel of the 20th Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry. Betram and the 20th Wisconsin first saw action at the battle of Newtonia.

In early December 1862, Bertram found himself as the senior ranking officer in his brigade, though only a lieutenant colonel.[2] He assumed command of the 1st Brigade in Francis Herron's 3rd Division of the Army of the Frontier. and was in command at the battle of Prairie Grove. Though Bertram clung to the title of brigade commander during the battle, he realistically commanded no more than the 430 men of his own 20th Wisconsin regiment as the other regiments in his command were detached for temporary assignment elsewhere.

On December 10, 1862 Bertram was promoted to colonel. Despite his promotion he returned to regimental command during the siege of Vicksburg. He commanded brigades in the Department of the Gulf after the fall of Vicksburg. In August 1864 his brigade was transferred to the Mobile Bay Land Forces under the command of Gordon Granger. There Bertram participated in the land operations during the battle of Mobile Bay against Fort Morgan.

He briefly commanded the District of Southern Alabama before returning to brigade command. His brigade, now part of the XIII Corps, fought in the battle of Fort Blakely. He received a brevet promotion to Brig. Gen. of U.S. Volunteers, backdated to March 13, 1865. He was mustered out of the volunteer service on July 14, 1865.

After the war he was a hotel proprietor and sheriff. He died in Wisconsin in 1878.


  1. ^ Eicher p.130
  2. ^ 20th Wisconsin