John Eaton Tourtellotte – Brigadier General, United States Army

John Eaton Tourtellotte of Connecticut

  • Appointed From Minnesota, Private, Company H, 4th Minnesota Infantry, 30 September to 12 December 1861
  • Lieutenant Colonel, 1 September 1862
  • Colonel, 5 October 1864
  • Breveted Brigadier General Of Volunteers, 13 March 1865, for gallant and meritorious service during the War.
  • Honorably mustered out of the volunteer service, 21 June 1865
  • Captain, 28th United States Infantry, 28 July 1866
  • Unassigned 31 March 1869
  • Assigned to the 7th United States Cavalry, 15 December 1870
  • Colonel, Aide-de-Camp to General Sherman, 1 January 1871 to 8 February 1884
  • Major, 7th United States Cavalry, 22 September 1883
  • Retired 20 March 1885
  • Breveted Major, 2 March 1867, for gallant and meritorious service in the siege of Vicksburg, Mississippi; Lieutenant Colonel, 2 March 1867 for gallant and meritorious services in the battle of Allatoona, Georgia, and Colonel, 2 March 1867 for gallant and meritorious services in the battle of Bentonville, North Carolina.
  • Died on 22 July 1891
  • Buried in Section 1 of Arlington National Cemetery


  • DATE OF DEATH: 07/22/1891
  • BURIED AT:   SITE 14-A

Tourtellotte, John Eaton
Company G, 7th United States Cavalry
July 3, 1833
Born at Windham Connecticut
Service Date: July 28, 1866
Not present -on detached service – Died July 22, 1891 LaCrosse Wisconsin

John Eaton Tourtellotte commanded the 4th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry during the Civil War.

Lieut. Col. John E. Tourtellotte, Fourth Minnesota Infantry, First Brigade

SIR: I have the honor to report that on April 23 last, my regiment, together with other parts of the army, started from Milliken's Bend, La., on an expedition to the rear of Vicksburg, Miss., where we are now lying. To reach this place we marched via Richmond, Hard Times Landing, La. (where we crossed and went down the stream of the Mississippi River 10 miles, landing on the Mississippi side at Bruinsburg), Port Gibson, Miss., Hankinson's Ferry, on the Black River, Rocky Springs, Utica, Raymond, Clinton, Jackson, Champion's Hill, near Bolton, Edwards Station, crossing the Black River near ——- plantation, and arriving in front of the enemy's works in rear of Vicksburg, on May 21. To accomplish this we have marched a distance of more than 200 miles.

[only portion related to Champion Hill included]

May 14, on the road from Clinton to Jackson, and when about 2 miles from the latter place, we met the enemy in strong force, and immediately formed line on the right of the road. Soon, however, the regiment was ordered to take position on the left of the road, with its right resting thereon, and to support the Seventeenth Iowa in charging the rebel lines. The enemy fled before the charge, and the regiment, with the others of General Quinby's division, entered the town. Loss of the regiment was 2 wounded.

May 16, at Champion's Hill, near Bolton, Miss., we came up to the line formed by Generals Hovey's and Logan's divisions, who were already engaging the enemy. My regiment was placed on the right of a battery as a support therefor. Almost immediately, however, by order of General McPherson, my regiment was ordered to hasten forward and assist the right of General Logan's division, which was reported to be hard pressed. The men threw their knapsacks and blankets from their shoulders and dashed forward in the direction indicated at the double-quick step up the hill, into the woods, and upon a body of the enemy, of whom my regiment captured and sent to the rear 118.

Directly, finding myself some distance in front of, and unsupported on either side by, the line formed by the remainder of the troops, and finding that the enemy was massing a heavy force in front, I sent my adjutant to General McPherson to report our situation and ask for instructions. Almost at the same time the enemy opened upon us with artillery. I caused the men to lie down, where they remained, sheltered by the crest of the hill, until I received orders to draw the regiment back, so as to connect with the right of such troops as I found first in my rear. This was executed, and the regiment formed on the right of Colonel Leggett's brigade, of General Logan's division. Here we remained about an hour, when the line of march to the front was again resumed, when I joined my regiment to the balance of Colonel Sanborn's brigade.

My loss in the regiment was Captain Thompson and Private [Michael] Dolan, of Company E, both wounded, the captain severely.

It shall be a matter of pride with us that not only were we present, but assisted in accomplishing this expedition.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding Regiment.

Capt. L. B. MARTIN,
A. A. A. G., First Brig., Seventh Div., Seventeenth Army Corps.

The first hospital was built through the generosity of a Civil War veteran, Colonel John E. Tourtellotte. Colonel Tourtellotte was born in Connecticut, but moved to Mankato, Minnesota, in 1857. In 1889 Colonel Tourtellotte made a gift of $8,800 to the city of Mankato to establish a hospital for the “care of the sick poor”. The hospital was constructed outside of the city limits and had no running water or sewage system. Water had to be pumped to a tank on the roof which leaked frequently. It was two stories tall and contained twenty rooms.


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