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The Honorable

Amasa Cobb
Col. Amasa Cobb, 5th Wis. Inf - NARA - 527300.jpg
6th and 9th Chief Justice of the Nebraska Supreme Court
In office
1890–1892
Preceded by Manoah B. Reese
Succeeded by Samuel Maxwell
In office
1884–1886
Preceded by George B. Lake
Succeeded by Samuel Maxwell
Justice of the Nebraska Supreme Court
In office
1878–1892
Preceded by Daniel Gantt
Succeeded by Alfred M. Post
5th Mayor of Lincoln, Nebraska
In office
1875–1876
Preceded by Samuel W. Little
Succeeded by Robert D. Silver, Jr.
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Wisconsin's 3rd district
In office
March 4, 1863 – March 3, 1871
Preceded by A. Scott Sloan
Succeeded by J. Allen Barber
13th Speaker of the Wisconsin Assembly
In office
January 9, 1861 – January 8, 1862
Preceded by William P. Lyon
Succeeded by James W. Beardsley
Member of the Wisconsin Senate
from the 15th district
In office
January 10, 1855 – January 14, 1857
Preceded by Levi Sterling
Succeeded by Lemuel W. Joiner
Member of the Wisconsin State Assembly
from the Iowa 2nd district
In office
January 11, 1860 – January 8, 1862
Preceded by Levi Sterling
Succeeded by John H. Vivian
Personal details
Born (1823-09-27)September 27, 1823
Crawford County, Illinois
Died July 5, 1905(1905-07-05) (aged 81)
Los Angeles, California
Resting place Wyuka Cemetery
Lincoln, Nebraska
Political party Republican
Spouse(s)
  • Philadelphia Stone Moffett
  • (m. 1849; died 1896)
Children
  • Gertrude Cobb
  • (b. 1850; died 1852)
Mother Nancy (Briggs) Cobb
Father John Cobb
Signature
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Branch/service  United States Army
Union Army
Years of service 1861–1865
Rank
Unit Army of the Potomac
Commands
  • 5th Reg. Wis. Vol. Infantry
  • 43rd Reg. Wis. Vol. Infantry
Battles/wars American Civil War

Amasa Cobb (September 27, 1823 – July 5, 1905) was an American politician and judge. He was the 6th and 9th Chief Justice of the Nebraska Supreme Court and the 5th Mayor of Lincoln, Nebraska. Earlier in his life, he was a United States Congressman from Wisconsin for 8 years and served as the 13th Speaker of the Wisconsin State Assembly. He also served as a Union Army office during the American Civil War.

Biography

Born in Crawford County, Illinois, near Palestine, Illinois, Cobb was the son of Nancy (Briggs) and John Cobb. He moved to the Wisconsin Territory in 1842 and mined for lead. He served in the Mexican–American War as a private. After the war he studied law, passed the bar and set up practice in Mineral Point, Wisconsin. He was a district attorney from 1850 to 1854, then was elected to the Wisconsin State Senate in 1855, serving until 1856. During his term, he was also the adjutant general of Wisconsin from 1855 to 1858. He became a member of the Wisconsin State Assembly in 1860 and served as speaker in 1861.

At the outset of the Civil War, on July 12, 1861, he joined the Union army as Colonel of the 5th Wisconsin Infantry Regiment, serving in the Army of the Potomac in several campaigns and battles. Most notably, Cobb succeeded Brigadier General Winfield S. Hancock in command of a brigade in second division VI Corps at the Battle of Antietam, after Hancock was transferred to command the first division II Corps. In the fall of 1862, he was elected to the 38th Congress from Wisconsin's 3rd congressional district for a two-year term. Cobb was reelected to the 39th, 40th, and 41st Congresses, serving until 1871. His last action with 5th Wisconsin Infantry was the Battle of Fredericksburg.

Despite being a sitting Representative in the United States House of Representatives, he resumed his military career on September 29, 1864, when he was named as Colonel of the newly raised 43rd Wisconsin Infantry Regiment. After arriving at Nashville, Tennessee, in October, Cobb and his regiment guarded the important supply and railroad depot at Johnsonville in Benton County, Tennessee, on the Tennessee River. On November 4, Cobb's men fought off an attack by John Bell Hood's Confederates led by Major General Nathan Bedford Forrest in the Battle of Johnsonville. For the rest of the war, the regiment was positioned in various parts of Tennessee to guard railroads and supply routes, and Cobb briefly commanded a brigade under Major General Robert H. Milroy. He and his men were mustered out of the service on June 24, 1865 in Nashville before returning to Wisconsin and civilian life.

On January 13, 1866, President Andrew Johnson nominated Cobb for appointment to the grade of brevet brigadier general of volunteers to rank from March 13, 1865, for his distinguished services at the Battles of Williamsburg, Golding's Farm, Virginia, during the Seven Days Battles and Antietam, and the United States Senate confirmed the appointment on March 12, 1866. After the war, Cobb became a member of the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States.

In 1871, Cobb moved to Lincoln, Nebraska, where he started to practice law again. He was appointed mayor of Lincoln in 1873, and then became associate justice of the Nebraska Supreme Court in 1878 to 1892. The last four years, from 1888 to 1892, he served as Nebraska's chief justice.

Amasa Cobb died in Los Angeles, California, on July 5, 1905. He was buried in Wyuka Cemetery, Lincoln, Nebraska.

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