United States Assistant Secretary of War
The United States Assistant Secretary of War was the second-ranking official within the American Department of War from 1861 to 1867, from 1882 to 1883, and from 1890 to 1940. According to the Military Laws of the United States, "The act of August 5, 1882 authorizing the appointment of an Assistant Secretary of War was repealed by the act of July 7, 1884 (23 Stat L., 331) the power conferred by the act of August 5, 1882 never having been exercised," indicating that the post was not filled between 1882 and 1883 (p. 45, footnote 2).
In 1940, the new position of United States Under Secretary of War replaced this position as the number-two office in the department. Assistant Secretary Robert P. Patterson became the first Under Secretary.
The office continued to exercise administrative duties until the department's end in 1947, when the United States Department of Defense was established.
List of Assistant Secretaries of War
This list only includes those persons who served as the Assistant Secretary, or First Assistant Secretary. At various times, there were also "second" or "third" assistant secretaries, ranking below the Assistant Secretary.
- Thomas Alexander Scott (March 10, 1861 - January 24, 1862)
- Peter H. Watson (January 24, 1862 - January 28, 1862)
- John Tucker (January 29, 1862 - June 10, 1862)
- Christopher Parsons Wolcott (June 11, 1862 – April 4, 1863) died in office
- Charles Anderson Dana (January 28, 1864 - July 26, 1866) 
- Thomas Thompson Eckert (July 27, 1866 – 1867) -- under Edwin M. Stanton during Andrew Johnson's presidency, office abolished 1868
- Lewis Addison Grant (c. 1890-1893) 
- Joseph Doe (c. 1893-1897) 
- George de Rue Meiklejohn (1897-1901) 
- William Cary Sanger (1901-1903) 
- Robert Shaw Oliver (1903-1913) 
- Henry Skillman Breckinridge (1913-1916) -- under Lindley M. Garrison during Woodrow Wilson's presidency
- William Moulton Ingraham (1916-1917) 
- Benedict Crowell (1917-1920) 
- William Reid Williams (1920-1921) 
- Jonathan Mayhew Wainwright (c. 1921-1923)
- Dwight Filley Davis (1923-1925) 
- Hanford MacNider (1925- c. 1928) 
- Patrick Jay Hurley (March 1929 – December 1929)
- Frederick Huff Payne (1930- c. 1933) 
- Harry Hines Woodring (1933-1936) 
- Louis Arthur Johnson (1937-1940)
- Robert Porter Patterson (1940)
- John Jay McCloy (c. 1941-1945)
- Howard Charles Petersen (c. 1945-1947)
Assistant Secretary of War for Air
The Air Corps Act of 1926 (44 Stat. 780), passed on July 2 of that year, created a Second Assistant Secretary position in the War Department variously called "Assistant Secretary of War for Aviation," "Assistant Secretary of War for Air," or "Assistant Secretary of War for Aeronautics." Those holding the office, with an eight-year vacancy between 1933 and 1941, were F. Trubee Davison (1926-1933), Robert A. Lovett (1941-1945), and Stuart Symington (1946-1947).
- Arlington National Cemetery: Robert Porter Patterson
- Perley Poore, Benjamin (1878). The political register and congressional directory: a statistical record of the Federal Officials...1776-1878. Boston: Houghton, Osgood and Company. p. 232.
- Secretaries of War and Interim And Acting Secretaries Of The Army
- General Doe, soldier and lawyer, was pioneer in baseball
- New York Times: G. D. Meiklejohn In Nebraska. Assistant Secretary of War Speaks at Grand Island on the History of Imperialism
- New York Times
- Sanger Mansion
- Pennsylvania at Antietam: Report of the Antietam Battlefield Memorial commission (mentions Oliver as Assistant Secretary, and Acting Secretary, of War, as of 1904)
- Gallery of History (says that Oliver served as Assistant Secretary longer than any other individual)
- "W. M. Ingraham, 80, Wilson Aide In 1917. Assistant Secretary of War for a Year Dies. Former Mayor of Portland, Me". New York Times. October 13, 1951. Retrieved 2015-04-17.
William Moulton Ingraham, Assistant Secretary of War under President Wilson and a former Mayor of this city, died today at his home after a brief illness. He was 80 years old. ...
- Time: "Crowell's Conspiracy," Oct. 15, 1923
- Time magazine
- "W. R. Williams Dies. Cabinet Aide In 1920. Assistant Secretary of War in the Wilson Administration. Was 65 Years Old". New York Times. Associated Press. Retrieved 2015-04-20.
William Reid Williams, Assistant Secretary of War under President Woodrow Wilson and prominently identified with the business and social life of Richmond, died tonight. He was 65 years old
- Arlington National Cemetery: Dwight Filley Davis
- Time: "Change," October 26, 1925
- Time: "The Hoover Week"
- Time: "Second to Hurley," 1930
- "Frederick Payne, Former U.S. Aide. Assistant Secretary of War for Hoover Dies. Served Springfield Ordnance Unit". New York Times. Associated Press. March 25, 1960. Retrieved 2015-04-19.
Frederick Huff Payne, Assistant Secretary of War under former President Herbert Hoover, died today at the home of his son, Groverman. He was 83 years old.
- Guide to the Harry Hines Woodring Collection
- Time: "Job No. 2"
- Time: "New Amphibian"
- Time: "Methodists & Businessmen "
- Time: "Line-Up"