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States Rights Gist
[[Image:200px|center|200px|border]]States Rights Gist
photo taken between 1862 and 1864
Personal Information
Born: September 3, 1831(1831-09-03)
Place of Birth: {{{place of birth}}}
Died: November 30, 1864 (aged 33)
Place of Death: {{{place of death}}}
Birth Name: {{{birth name}}}
Other Information
Allegiance: United States of America
Confederate States of America
Participation(s): {{{participations}}}
Branch: Confederate Army
Service Years: {{{service years}}}
Rank: Brigadier General (S.C. Militia)
Brigadier General (CSA)
Service number : {{{servicenumber}}}
Unit: {{{unit}}}
Battles: American Civil War
Relations: {{{relations}}}
Other work: {{{otherwork}}}

States Rights Gist (September 3, 1831 — November 30, 1864) was a lawyer, a militia general in South Carolina, and a Confederate Army general who served during the American Civil War. A relative of several prominent South Carolinians, Gist rose to fame later during the war but was killed during the Franklin-Nashville Campaign in November 1864.

Personal life[]

Gist was born in Union, South Carolina, to Nathaniel Gist and Elizabeth Lewis McDaniel[1] and was distantly related to Mordecai Gist, a general in the Continental Army during the American Revolution. He graduated from South Carolina College and attended Harvard Law School for a year without graduating, before moving home to Union to practice law. In 1863, Gist married Jane Margaret Adams, whose father was James Hopkins Adams, governor of South Carolina from 1854 until 1856.[2] In 1858, Gist's cousin William Henry Gist became governor.[3] Both were active in the secession movement.

Militia and Civil War service[]

In the late 1850s, Gist became involved in the state militia, and by April 1856 he was a brigadier general in the South Carolina Militia. One of his many roles was to train fellow militia members for war. When South Carolina seceded from the Union, he worked as state adjutant and inspector general. While in this role he acquired weaponry and mobilized manpower throughout the state. Also in this capacity, he rendered valuable service in the preparation for the occupation of the Charleston, South Carolina harbor and the reduction of Fort Sumter. In early 1861, Gist was assigned to the Army of the Potomac and was an aide to another South Carolina general, Brig. Gen. Barnard Bee, at the First Battle of Manassas.[4]

On March 20, 1862, Gist was appointed a brigadier general in the Confederate Army.[5] Gist then went to back to assist in the coastal defense of South Carolina under the command of Maj. Gen. John C. Pemberton. When Pemberton's forces went to Vicksburg, Mississippi, Gist accompanied Gen. Joseph E. Johnston on his journey to Vicksburg.

The Vicksburg Campaign was not a success for Johnston, and Gist was reassigned to the Army of Tennessee, where he commanded units during the battles of Chickamauga, Chattanooga, and Atlanta in 1863 and 1864. It was after the Battle of Atlanta that Gist commanded a brigade under Maj. Gen. John C. Brown during Lt. Gen. John Bell Hood's Franklin-Nashville Campaign. Also at Atlanta Gist was wounded in a hand on July 22, 1864.[5]


Gist was shot in the chest while leading his brigade in a charge against Federal fortifications at the Battle of Franklin in November 1864. He died of his wounds soon after at a field hospital in Franklin, Tennessee.[5] He was one of twelve Confederate generals lost that day, six of them killed in action.[6]

He is buried in the Trinity Episcopal churchyard in downtown Columbia, South Carolina.[7]

See also[]


  • Eicher, John H., and Eicher, David J., Civil War High Commands, Stanford University Press, 2001, ISBN 0-8047-3641-3.
  • Cisco, Walter Brian, States Rights Gist: A South Carolina General of the Civil War. Shippensburg, PA, White Mane Pub. Co. 1991, ISBN 0-942597-28-1.


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