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Genl. Joseph Reid Anderson

Genl. Joseph Reid Anderson

Male 1813 - 1892  (79 years)

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  • Name Joseph Reid Anderson  [1
    Prefix Genl. 
    Born 16 Feb 1813  Botetourt Co., Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    Gender Male 
    Died 7 Sep 1892  Isle of Shoals, New Hampshire Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    Buried Hollywood Cemetery, Richmond, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    • Civil War Confederate Brigadier General. He attended West Point, graduating 4th in the class in 1836 and was assigned as an officer to the 3rd U.S. Artillery. Recognizing his engineering abilities he was assigned as an assistant engineer to the Engineer Bureau, Washington D.C. before being officially transferred to the Corps of Engineers in 1837. Deciding his engineering career would best be served outside the military he resigned his commission and accepted the position of assistant engineer of the State of Virginia. He was chief engineer of the Valley Turnpike Company and later with the with the Tredegar Iron Company which by 1860, was producing locomotives, boilers, cables, naval hardware and cannon. With the outbreak of the Civil War, he offered his services to the Confederacy and was commissioned a Brigadier General on September 3, 1861. He commanded Confederate forces at Wilmington, North Carolina and was in command of the 3rd Brigade in A.P. Hill's newly formed Light Infantry Division in the Peninsula Campaign. In actions at Mechanicville, Gaines' Mill, and at Frayser's Farm White Oak Swamp, he was seriously wounded on June 30, 1862. He resigned his commission in July 1862 and returned to run Tredegar Iron Company as supervisor until the end of the war. The ironworks remained under U.S. Federal control until 1867, when he again assumed duties as supervisor of the Tredegar Iron Company.

      General Joseph Reid Anderson was born at Walnut Hill, February 16, 1813, graduated from West Point Military Academy, second in a class of sixty-eight, and was Lieutenant U. S. A. Engineer Corps until 1838. He was founder of Tredegar Iron Works at Richmond, successor to Tredegar Iron Company which Joseph R. Anderson almost singiehandedly rescued from the hands of the Receivers and revived under the name of Tredegar Iron Works. The operation of the Tredegar Iron Works was so vital to the Confederacy that Richmond, its site, was held as long as possible by the Confederate Amy, long after it was otherwise militarily unprofitable to hold it. Joseph R. Anderson was commissioned Brigadier General by the Confederacy in 1861 and served with great gallantry in the field until ordered to take charge of the Tredegar Iron Works, from which the Confederacy so largely drew its ordnance supplies. Confederate cannon made by Tredegar Company, as most of it was, had stamped upon it "TF-JRA" (Tredegar Foundry -- Joseph Reid Anderson). So far as the writer knows, Joseph R. Anderson was the only general Botetourt County furnished to the Confederacy. General Anderson was several times a member of the House of Delegates of Virginia and President of the Richmond Chamber of Commerce, 1874-6, when he resigned to become President of the City Council of Richmond. He was a vestryman of St. Paul's Church from its founding in 1844 and a warden from 1873 until his death. He was buried with civic and military honors September 9, 1892, in Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond.

      Joseph graduated from West Point in 1832, fourth in his class of 68, and served in the U. S. Engineers until 1838. Letters written by him at West Point to his brother, Francis, at Walnut Hill show a mature mind and character at that time.
      In 1838 he founded the Tredegar Iron Works in Richmond and he acted as president of this company until his death in 1892. Four times during these years he reorganized and saved the life of this business.
      He married, in 1837, Sallie Archer, daughter of Dr. Robert Archer, U. S. Army surgeon, and they had 12 children. He married secondly in 1882 the talented and charming Miss Mary Pegram.
      When the shadow of war engulfed the state, he was commissioned a brigadier general by the Confederate government and served in the field. Yet the Tredegar was responsible for the manufacture of guns and ordnance for the great armies in the upper South and West and adjoining states, especially the Brooke gun, and the "Napoleon", the latter designed by him. So the government sent him back to the iron business.
      Joseph R. Anderson became a member of St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Richmond (his own mother was an Episcopalian). He was senior warden of that church for most of his later life. Many monuments, including beautiful memorial windows naming the Andersons, are to be seen at St. Paul's now.

      Children of Joseph and Sarah: Archer, Fannie Archer, Joseph Reid
      Joseph and Sarah had twelve children [1, 2, 3, 4]
    Person ID I28109  Mindrum
    Last Modified 4 Nov 2015 

    Father William Anderson,   b. 2 Jun 1764, Delaware Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 13 Sep 1839, Walnut Hill, Botetourt, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 75 years) 
    Mother Anne Thomas,   b. 29 Dec 1779,   d. 23 Jul 1848  (Age 68 years) 
    Married 15 May 1796  Frederick Co., Maryland Find all individuals with events at this location  [5, 6, 7
    Family ID F12640  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 1 Sarah Elizabeth Sallie Archer,   b. 6 Sep 1819,   d. 13 Aug 1881  (Age 61 years) 
    Married 1837  [4
    Last Modified 4 Nov 2015 
    Family ID F19385  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 2 Mary Evans Pegram,   b. 1832,   d. 26 Dec 1911  (Age 79 years) 
    Married 1882  [4
    Last Modified 4 Nov 2015 
    Family ID F19386  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Photos
    Anderson, Joseph Reid
    Anderson, Joseph Reid
    Anderson, Joseph Reid
    Anderson, Joseph Reid

    Anderson, Joseph Reid
    Anderson, Joseph Reid
    Anderson, Joseph
    Anderson, Joseph

  • Sources 
    1. [S8249] Robert D. Stoner, A Seed-Bed of the Republic, (The Roanoke Historical Society, 1963), p. 273.

    2. [S6231] www.findagrave.com.

    3. [S6231] www.findagrave.com, Bio by John "J-Ct" Griffith.

    4. [S8259] The Four Anderson Brothers, Ellen Graham Anderson, Journal of the Roanoke Historical Society, Volume Six, Number One, Summer 1969.

    5. [S7877] William Anderson Sons of the American Revolution Membership Application, 27 Feb 1918.

    6. [S8056] Maryland Marriages, 1655-1850.

    7. [S8249] Robert D. Stoner, A Seed-Bed of the Republic, (The Roanoke Historical Society, 1963), 1796.