Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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TIDBALL, John Caldwell, soldier, born in Ohio county, Virginia (now West Virginia), 25 January, 1825. He was graduated at the United States military academy in 1848, being assigned to the 3d artillery. He served at the various stations of his regiment until 1861, when, having attained the rank of captain, he was placed in command of a battery, and engaged in the principal actions of the Army of the Potomac from the battle of Bull Run until and including the battle of Gettysburg in 1863. During the latter part of the campaign in Pennsylvania Captain Tidball commanded a brigade of horse artillery. He was appointed colonel of the 4th New York volunteer artillery, 28 August, 1863, and commanded the artillery of the 2d corps of the Army of the Potomac during the Richmond campaign, including the battles of the Wilderness and the siege of Petersburg. He was commandant of cadets at West Point from 10 July till 22 September, 1864, and led the artillery of the 9th corps from 9 October, 1864, till 2 April, 1865, in the operations that terminated in the surrender of Lee at Appomattox. After he was mustered out of the volunteer service he commanded his battery at the presidio of San Francisco until his promotion in February, 1867, to major of the 2d artillery, thence serving in command of the district of Astoria and Alaska, and the post of Raleigh, North Carolina, and as superintendent of artillery instruction at the United States artillery-school at Fort Monroe, Virginia, till January. 1880. He was then appointed aide-de-camp to the general of the army, with rank of colonel, serving until 8 February, 1884. He became lieutenant-colonel of the 3d artillery, 30 June, 1882, and colonel of the 1st artillery, 22 March, 1885, and has commanded the artillery-school and post of Fort Monroe since I November, 1883. In 1889 he will be retired from active service. He has received the brevets of brigadier-general of volunteers for gallant and distinguished services at Spottsylvania, major-general of volunteers for services at Fort Sedgwick, major in the regular army for Gaines's Mills, lieutenant-colonel for Antietam, colonel for gallantry at Fort Stedman, and brigadier-general, 13 March, 1865, for gallant and meritorious services during the rebellion. General Tidball is the author of a "Manual of Heavy Artillery Service" which has been adopted by the war department (Washington, 1880).
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