Thomas Jonathan “Stonewall” Jackson (1824-1863) was born in Clarksburg, (West) Virginia. His father died when he was two years old, and his mother died five years later. Jackson was raised by his Uncle Cummins Jackson in Jackson’s Mill, near present day Weston in Lewis County. At the age of 18, Jackson attended West Point Military academy. After graduating in 1864, he served in the U.S.-Mexican War. Later, Jackson was an instructor at the Virginia Military Institute (VMI).
When the Civil War broke out, Jackson stayed loyal to his home state of Virginia and sided with the Confederacy. He was one of the leading generals during the Civil War and was considered among the most skillful tacticians in military history. He led his troops to many victories, including battles at Manassas, Antietam, Fredericksburg, and Chancellorsville. At another victory at Fort Royal, Virginia in May 1862, Jackson credited it in part to southern spy Belle Boyd, who informed his men of the number of Union soldiers. Without his knowledge, Jackson would not have ordered his men to advance and push Union troops farther away. Jackson was accidentally shot by his own men in May, 1863, resulting in the loss of his arm to amputation. He died eight days later, following complications from pneumonia.