Philip H. Sheridan entered the U.S. Military academy in 1848, and on graduation in
July of 1853, was made a brevet
second lieutenant in the Fourth Infantry. He was promoted to second lieutenant in November, 1854. In 1855 he
escorted a topographical party from the Sacramento Valley in California, to the Columbia River, in Oregon. In 1855
he was also part of an expedition against Yakima Indians. In April, 1856, he was part of the Army force engaged in
defense of the Cascades. He was promoted to first lieutenant in March, 1861.
He was promoted to captain, Thirteenth Infantry, in May, 1861. For part of 1861 and
part of 1862 Sheridan served
as Chief Quarter-Master and Commissary of the Army of Southwest Missouri. He was made Colonel, 2nd Michigan
Cavalry Volunteers, in May 1862, and commanded a brigade and engaged in skirmishes at Booneville, Blackland,
Donaldson Cross Roads, and Baldwin. In July, 1862, Sheridan was made brigadier general of volunteers and was in
command of the 11th division, Army of Ohio on its advance into Kentucky, and was engaged in the battle of
Perryville. He was made brigadier general, United States Volunteers, in December, 1862. He commanded a division
in the Army of the Cumberland, and was engaged in the battle of Stone River. In 1863, Sheridan's troops captured a
train and prisoners near Eagleville, engaged in the capture of Winchester, Tennessee, the battles of Chickamauga
and Missionary Ridge and, in early 1864, the skirmish of Dandridge. He was in command of the cavalry corps, Army
of the Potomac, and was engaged in the battle of the Wilderness, combat at Todd's Tavern, and the capture of
Spottsylvania, Virginia. He was engaged in a raid to Haxall's Landing, the cutting of the Virginia Central and
Richmond and Fredericksburg railroads, the actions at Beaver Dam, Yellow Tavern, Meadow Bridge, Hanovertown,
Tolopotomy Creek, Hawes' Shop, Metadequin Creek, and the battle of Cold Harbor (all in May, 1864). In June and
July, 1864, he conducted a raid to Charlottesville, and was engaged in actions at Trevillian Station, Tunstall Station,
St. Mary's Church, and Darbytown. He was in command of the Army of the Shenandoah and of the Middle Military
Division in 1864, into 1865, and was engaged in the battles of Opequan, Fisher's Hill, and Ceder Creek in September
and October, 1864.
Sheridan was promoted to brigadier general, United States Army, in September, 1864 and to
major general, United
States Army, in November, 1864. The thanks of Congress were tendered in November of 1864. The thanks of
Congress were again tendered in February of 1865, for the gallantry, military skill, and courage displayed in the
brilliant series of victories achieved by his army in the valley of the Shenandoah, especially at Cedar Run. Through
March of 1865, troops under Sheridan participated in the actions of Wuynesboro', North Anna Bridge, and Ashland.
During the Richmond Campaign he was in command at the Battles of Dinwiddie Court House, Five Forks, Sailor's
Creek, and Appomattox Station. He was present at AppomatoxCourt House, on April 9th, when General Lee
surrendered. In May of 1865 he commanded a raid, along the Dan River, to South Boston, North Carolina.
Sheridan was appointed a Lieutenant General, United States Army, in March of 1869.