John Sedgwick
Historical Figure
Nationality: United States
Date of Birth: 1813
Date of Death: 1864
Cause of Death: Shot in the head
Occupation: Educator, soldier
Military Branch: United States Army (Mexican-American War,
Army (American Civil War)
Fictional Appearances:
The Guns of the South
POD: January 17, 1864
Type of Appearance: Contemporary reference
Date of Death: Unrevealed
Military Branch: Army of the Potomac (Second American Revolution)

John Sedgwick (September 13, 1813 – May 9, 1864) was a teacher, a career military officer, and a United States Army general in the American Civil War. He was wounded thrice at the Battle of Antietam while leading his division in an unsuccessful assault, causing him to miss the Battle of Fredericksburg. Under his command, the VI Corps played an important role in the Chancellorsville Campaign by engaging Confederate troops at the Second Battle of Fredericksburg and the Battle of Salem Church. His Corps was the last to arrive at the Battle of Gettysburg, and thus did not see much action. Sedgwick was killed by a sharpshooter at the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House on May 9, 1864. He is well-remembered for his ironic last words: "They couldn't hit an elephant at this distance."

John Sedgwick in The Guns of the South[]

John Sedgwick's VI Corps was used to draw C.S. General Richard S. Ewell away from the main action of U.S. General Hugh J. Kilpatrick's raid to liberate Union prisoners of war from Belle Isle and Libby Prison. Kilpatrick's raid failed due to the arrival of Jeb Stuart's AK-47-wielding troops.[1]


  1. The Guns of the South, pgs. 78-79.
Military offices
Preceded by
Darius N. Couch
Commander of the II Corps, United States Army
December 26, 1862 – January 26, 1863
Succeeded by
Oliver Otis Howard
Preceded by
Orlando Willcox
Commander of the IX Corps
January 16, 1863 - February 5, 1863
Succeeded by
William Farrar Smith
Preceded by
John Newton
James B. Ricketts
Commander of the VI Corps
February 5, 1863 - April 3, 1864
April 13, 1864 - May 9, 1864
Succeeded by
James B. Ricketts
Horatio Wright