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Guide to the Edward Otho Cresap Ord papers, 1850-1883
BANC MSS C-B 479  
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Collection Details
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  • Collection Summary
  • Information for Researchers
  • Scope and Content
  • Biography

  • Collection Summary

    Collection Title: Edward Otho Cresap Ord Papers,
    Date (inclusive): 1850-1883
    Collection Number: BANC MSS C-B 479
    Creator: Ord, Edward Otho Cresap, 1818-1883
    Extent: Number of containers: 9 boxes Number of microfilm reels: 2
    Repository: The Bancroft Library
    Berkeley, California 94720-6000
    Physical Location: For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.
    Languages Represented: English

    Information for Researchers


    Collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    Copyright has not been assigned to The Bancroft Library. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Head of Public Services. Permission for publication is given on behalf of The Bancroft Library as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the reader.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Edward Otho Cresap Ord papers, BANC MSS C-B 479, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

    Related Collections

    Title: E. O. C. Ord papers,
    Date: 1840-1887,
    Identifier/Call Number: BANC MSS 2002/93 cz
    Title: E. O. C. Ord II papers,
    Date: 1869-1945 (bulk 1885-1922),
    Identifier/Call Number: BANC MSS 2002/92 cz

    Scope and Content

    This collection of papers was given to the Bancroft Library by Miss Ellen Ord, the diaries in 1922, and the remainder of the material in 1956. The papers contain correspondence, primarily of a military nature; accounts relating to the Coast Survey and to the Army; Army orders and circulars; 3 diaries, 1850-1856; and a few miscellaneous papers. The collection deals to a large extent with the Civil War period, but also touches upon other phases of the General's career, particularly post-Civil War Arkansas and Texas during disturbances in the Rio Grande area. Also included is a small portion of papers of his son, Edward Otho Cresap Ord, Jr., who followed a military career.


    Edward Otho Cresap Ord, born in Cumberland, Maryland in 1818, descended from a family of military forebears. His mathematical ability early won for him an appointment to West Point, from which he graduated in 1839. For his first assignment, with the third artillery, he fought the Seminole Indians in Florida in 1840. In 1847 he was sent around the Horn to California, where he aided in maintaining order in Monterey, was made a captain in 1850, and in 1854 married Mary Mercer Thompson. From 1850 he participated in the coast survey, working mainly in the vicinity of San Pedro, California. He led a successful campaign against the Rogue River Indians of Oregon in 1856, and later against the Spokane Indians of Washington.
    At the beginning of the Civil War, Ord was stationed at the San Francisco Presidio, He was soon ordered east, defended Washington, D. C. from November 1861 to May 1862, and then headed the Army of Tennessee, taking part in the battle at Iuka, Mississippi. He was wounded while driving back Confederate troops at Hatchie. From June to October 1863, he led the Army of Western Louisiana. In March 1864 he campaigned against Staunton, Virginia and later led operations against Richmond. He was again wounded at the capture of Fort Harrison. He commanded the Army of the James and the Department of North Carolina from January 8, 1865, and actively assisted in the battle of Petersburg, Virginia.
    After the war, Ord was sent to various posts - Ohio, Arkansas, California, and Texas. He was retired with the rank of major general in 1880, and while on his way from New York to accept a position as engineer for the construction of a railroad in Mexico, fell ill with yellow fever, dying at Havana, Cuba, when taken ashore, on July 22, 1883.