Jedediah Hotchkiss

Jedediah Hotchkis. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress. Digital ID # LC-USZ62-14015.

A cartographer whose skills aided many Confederate victories, Jedediah Hotchkiss (1828–1899) was a native of Windsor, New York. Moving to Virginia in 1847, Hotchkiss earned his living as a schoolteacher. Despite a lack of formal training, Hotchkiss offered his services to the confederate army as a mapmaker shortly after the outbreak of the Civil War. In March 1862, Major General Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson directed Hotchkiss to make a detailed map of the Shenandoah Valley from Harpers Ferry to Lexington. The resulting topographic map was instrumental to Jackson's success in the 1862 Valley Campaign. Maps produced by Hotchkiss additionally benefited Stonewall Jackson in all of his subsequent engagements, including Cedar Mountain, Second Bull Run (Second Manassas), Antietam (Sharpsburg), Fredericksburg, and Chancellorsville. Following Jackson's death in 1863, Hotchkiss continued to contribute maps used by Confederate army commanders Richard Ewell, Jubal Early, and Robert E. Lee. Having risen to the rank of major by the time of the surrender at Appomattox Court House, Jedediah Hotchkiss spent his later years as an engineer and a promoter of the development of Virginia's mineral resources. He wrote the Virginia volume of the Confederate Military History (1899), and many of his wartime maps were included in the Atlas of the War of the Rebellion.

Related Items