We begin our presentation on Maine’s hard fought 2nd Volunteer Infantry with pre-Civil
War cased daguerreotype portraits of [General] Charles Davis Jameson and his wife
Julia. Born in Gorham Maine in 1827 young Charles would relocate with his family to the
lumbering and sawmill center of Old town, Maine. By the time of the Civil War, Jameson
was a successful lumberman and a man of some stature. He was a Volunteer Maine
Militia Commander and had been tapped as a Maine delegate to the Democratic National
Convention in Charlestown, South Carolina in 1860. When the Civil War broke out he
was elected Colonel of the 2nd Maine Infantry, led his regiment at 1st Bull Run and was
commissioned brigadier general effective Sept. 3, 1861. In the months after Bull Run the
Democratic Party of Maine split into anti-war “Copperheads” and pro-war factions.
Jameson became the unsuccessful gubernatorial candidate of the War Democrats in the
1861. During the Peninsular campaign, he commanded the 1st brigade of Kearny's 3rd
division of the 3rd Army Corps. Earning the nickname General of the Trenches, Jameson
was the first to discover the Confederate evacuation of Yorktown, Virginia on May 4,
1862 and during the battle of Seven Pines, his command got closer to Richmond than any
portion of McClellan's army. It was at the Battle of Fair Oaks though that the Maine
Lumberman’s already established prowess in the field would be lost to the Union cause
when his horse was shot out from under him. While recovering from his wounds General
Jameson was afflicted with what was commonly referred to as camp fever (typhoid) and
was returned to Maine for convalescence. He died in Old Town on November 6, 1862 and
is buried at Riverside Cemetery in Stillwater, Maine. Some sources report that Jameson
actually died on the steamship carrying him home between Boston and Bangor.
Charles Davis Jameson is captured here as an antebellum business man and
influential political figure. Adjacent to the pre Civil War image is a rare signed photo
of “General of the Trenches” Jameson before being struck down by typhoid.
Maine Veterans honored the memory of the Maine General by
designating their Bradford, Maine meeting hall as the Charles D.
Jameson G. A. R Post #110. Their flag is superimposed by a
well-worn, wartime published, album engraving of the General.