Prentiss Ingraham

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Prentiss Ingraham in 1890

Colonel Prentiss Ingraham (December 28, 1843 – August 16, 1904) was a colonel in the Confederate Army, a mercenary throughout the 1860s, and a fiction writer.


Prentiss Ingraham, the son of Rev. Joseph Ingraham (author of A Prince of the House of David), was born near Natchez, Mississippi in Adams County. He studied at St. Timothy's Military Academy, Maryland, and at Jefferson College, Mississippi.[1]

Later he entered the Mobile Medical College, but soon quit to join the Confederate Army where he became a Colonel in the Adacus Company Regiment.[2] He was also commander of scouts in Lawrence Sullivan Ross' Brigade, the Texas Cavalry. After the end of the war, he went to Mexico and fought with Juárez against the French, and still later went to South America.[1]

He had service with General Max Hoffmann's staff in the Battle of Sadowa, Austria, in 1866 was in Crete against the Turks, and in the Khedive's army in Egypt. During 1869 he went to London but soon came back to the United States and enlisted with the Cuban rebels against Spain, running the blockade in the Hornet several times before it was surrendered to the U. S. Navy. He was a Colonel in the Cuban army as well as a Captain in their navy, and was captured, tried as a filibuster and condemned to death by the Spaniards, but escaped.[3] Ingraham relocated to the American West where he met Buffalo Bill Cody. Ingraham soon worked as an advance agent for Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show.

In 1875 he married Rose Langley.[4]

Writing career[edit]

Ingraham's literary career began in London in 1869. He was the author of the novel The Masked Spy (1872) and is known best for his Buffalo Bill series of novels. Other major novelistic series include the Buck Taylor series, Merle Monte series, and Dick Doom series. Ingraham claimed in 1900 to have written more than 600 novels.

As well as writing by his own name, Ingraham used a number of pseudonyms including: Dr. Noel Dunbar, Dangerfield Burr, Major Henry B. Stoddard, Colonel Leon Lafitte, Frank Powell, Harry Dennies Perry, Midshipman Tom W. Hall, Lieut. Preston Graham.[3] He also ghostwrote several works for Buffalo Bill Cody.[5]


Prentiss Ingraham spent his final days at the Beauvoir Confederate Home in Biloxi, Mississippi where he died of Bright's Disease, known to modern medicine as nephritis, on August 16, 1904, aged 60.[1]


  1. ^ a b c "Col. Prentiss Ingraham". The Port Gibson Reveille. August 25, 1904. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  2. ^ "Beauvoir Confederate Soldiers Home Cemetery". Beauvoir - The Jefferson Davis Home and Presidential Library. Archived from the original on 26 January 2012. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  3. ^ a b "Ingraham, Prentiss". NIU House of Beadle & Adams Online. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  4. ^ Adcock, John. "Col. Prentiss Ingraham (1843-1904)". Yesterday’s Papers. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  5. ^ Murdoch, David Hamilton (2001). The American West: The Invention of a Myth. Welsh Academic Press. p. 39. ISBN 9781860570117.

External links[edit]