BORN: 1838 in Mechanicsville, TN.
DIED: 1923 in Savannah, GA.
(Spent the last 47 years of his life in an insane asylum.)
CAMPAIGNS: Mill Springs, Shiloh, Baton Rouge, Stone's River, Chickamauga, Atlanta, Dalton to Jonesborough, Franklin and Nashville, and Murfreesboro.
HIGHEST RANK ACHIEVED: Brigadier General
Thomas Benton Smith was born on February 24, 1838, in Mechanicsville, Tennessee. He was educated locally and at Nashville Military Institute, and attended West Point briefly. Smith worked for the Nashville & Decatur Railroad, and joined the Confederate forces when the Civil War began. Fighting at Mill Springs in January of 1862 and Shiloh in April, he took part in the failed Confederate attempt against the Union post at Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Smith performed well at Stone's River, but was seriously wounded there. He recovered, but was wounded again at Chickamauga. Smith returned to the field in the Atlanta Campaign, and was promoted to brigadier general on July 29, 1864. He established a reputation as one of the Army of Tennessee's best leaders, he fought well from Dalton to Jonesborough. Smith scored triumphs at Franklin, Nashville and Murfreesboro, Tennessee. He was captured at Nashville on December 16, 1864, and was attacked by a colonel of an Ohio regiment which had suffered heavy losses due to Smith's brigade. The Ohio officer hit Smith across the head repeatedly with his saber, and laid Smith's brain open. Smith recovered enough to be able to do some railroad work after the Civil War. Nevertheless, Smith spent his last 47 years in an insane asylum in Nashville, and died there on May 21, 1923.