Isaac H. Duval

Isaac Harding Duval
Born (1824-09-01)September 1, 1824
Wellsburg, Virginia (now West Virginia
Died July 10, 1902(1902-07-10) (aged 77)
Wellsburg, West Virginia
Place of burial Brooke Cemetery, Wellsburg, West Virginia
Allegiance United States of America
Service/branch United States Army
Union Army
Years of service 1861 - 1866
Rank Brigadier General
Brevet Major General
Commands held 9th West Virginia Infantry
Kanawha Division
Battles/wars American Civil War

Isaac Harding Duval (September 1, 1824 July 10, 1902) was an adventurer and businessman prior to becoming a brigadier general in the Union Army during the American Civil War. He was a postbellum U.S. Representative from West Virginia in the 41st United States Congress.

Early life and career

Duval was born in Wellsburg, West Virginia (then Virginia) in Brooke County. He attended the common schools as a child. As a young man, he traveled to Fort Smith, Arkansas, where he joined an elder brother who was running a trading post. Afterward, he became a scout on the Western Plains and Rocky Mountains, and joined the Gold Rush in 1849.

He was a member of the Lopez expedition to Cuba that sought to aid the Cuban national independence movement. After his time as a filibuster, he returned to Wellsburg in 1853 and worked as a merchant.

Civil War

During the Civil War, Duval was commissioned as the first major of the 1st Virginia Volunteer Infantry on June 1, 1861. He was later promoted to colonel of the 9th West Virginia Volunteer Infantry. In September 1864, he was badly wounded in his thigh at the Battle of Opequon. After he recovered, he was promoted to the rank of brigadier general and given charge of a brigade of infantry in the VIII Corps.

By the end of the war, Duval had fought in 36 separate engagements and commanded two different divisions in the VIII Corps. He had eleven horses killed and wounded under him. On May 17, 1865, after the surrender of the main Confederate armies under Generals Lee and Johnston, but with some other Confederate units still in the field in the west, an unknown attacker tried to kill Duval at Staunton, Virginia.[1] Duval was mustered out of the volunteer service on January 15, 1866.[1] On February 24, 1866, President Andrew Johnson nominated Duval for appointment to the brevet grade of major general of volunteers, to rank from March 13, 1865, and the U.S. Senate confirmed the nomination on May 4, 1866.[2]

Postbellum career

After completing his Union Army service, Duval returned to West Virginia, where he served as member of the West Virginia Senate and as the state's adjutant general from 1867 to 1869. He was elected as a Republican to the Forty-first Congress (March 4, 1869March 3, 1871). He declined to be a candidate for renomination in 1870.

He then served as States Assessor of Internal Revenue in 1871 and 1872. He worked as the U.S. Collector of Internal Revenue for the first district of West Virginia from 1872 to 1884. He served as member of the West Virginia House of Delegates from 1887 to 1889.

Duval died in Wellsburg, West Virginia, on July 10, 1902, and was buried at Brooke Cemetery. His country home, known as the Gen. I.H. Duval Mansion, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1986.[3]

See also


  1. 1 2 Eicher, John H., and David J. Eicher, Civil War High Commands. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2001. ISBN 0-8047-3641-3. p. 220
  2. Eicher, John H., and David J. Eicher, Civil War High Commands. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2001. ISBN 0-8047-3641-3. p. 711
  3. National Park Service (2009-03-13). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.


 This article incorporates public domain material from the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress website

Further reading

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Chester D. Hubbard
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from West Virginia's 1st congressional district

Succeeded by
John James Davis
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