Thomas Reid Roots Cobb ( rootes cobb, April 10, 1823 – December 13, 1862) – American lawyer, writer, politician and officer of the Confederate Army. Killed in the battle of Fredericksburg, where his brigade was able to stop the advance of the entire federal army.
Cobb was born in Jefferson County, Georgia to John Cobb and Sarah Roots Cobb. He was the younger brother of Howell Cobb. He married Marion Lumpkin, who was the daughter of the Chief Justice of Georgia, Joseph Henry Lumpkin. Of his several children, three survived: Callender (1848-1911), Sarah (1846-1915) and Marion (1860-1919). His daughter Lucy (1844-1857) died at an early age and he subsequently founded the Lucy Cobb Institute in her memory.
In 1841 he graduated from Franklin College, Georgia University, where he was a member of the Phi Kappa Literary Society. In 1842 he a lawyer’s license. From 1849 to 1857 he worked at the Supreme Court of Georgia. Cobb was a staunch secessionist and delegate to the secession council. He also became known as the author of a treatise on the laws of slavery: An Inquiry into the Law of Negro Slavery in the United States of America (1858).
During the Civil War, Cobb served in the Confederate Congress and helped draft the Confederate Constitution, which bears his . In the summer of 1861, he formed the regiment known as the Cobb Legion and was to colonel on 28 August 1861. He fought in the Seven-Day Battle and the Maryland Campaign, but missed the Battle of Antietam, where he was replaced by Lieutenant Colonel Luther Glenn. On November 1, 1862, Cobb was promoted to brigadier general (not subsequently approved by Congress). Cobb led the Georgian brigade in General McLawes’s division:
- 16th Georgia Regiment: Regiment. Goody Brian
- 18th Georgia Regiment: sub. Solon Raff
- 24th georgian regiment: regiment. Robert McMillan
- Legion of Cobb
- Phillips Legion: sub. Robert Cook
Cobb and his brigade earned their main fame during the Battle of Fredericksburg. On December 13, 1862, three regiments of the brigade (18th, 24th Georgians and the Phillps Legion) were ordered to take forward positions at Marie Heights. At about 11:00 the positions were attacked by General French’s federal division. The division’s attack was repulsed with heavy losses, but General Cobb was mortally wounded by a shell fragment (according to another version – by a bullet), and Lieutenant Colonel Macmillan took command. Cobb suffered a damaged femoral artery and died on the same day.
General McLawes later wrote:
General Cobb, wounded in the calf by a musket bullet, died shortly after being transported to a in the rear of the division. We were in close relations with him and I have always treated him with deep respect, and, I think, this is how everyone who knew his great mind and kind heart treated him. Like Jackson Stone Wall, he was a deeply religious man, firmly convinced of the cause of the South, and he believed that God would send us a visible sign that Providence was for us, and prayed daily for His participation in our cause.
Original text (English) – General Cobb, who was wounded by a musket ball in the calf of the leg, died shortly after he was removed to the field hospital in rear of the division. He and I were on intimate terms, and I had learned to esteem him warmly, as I believe every one did who came to know his great intellect and his good heart. Like Stonewall Jackson, he was a religious enthusiast, and, being firmly convinced that the South was right, believed that God would give us visible sign that Providence was with us, and daily prayed for His interposition in our behalf. – Confederate Military History
Cobb was buried in Okoni Hill Cemetery in Athens, Georgia.
- Digest of the Statute Laws of Georgia (1851)
- Inquiry into the Law of Negro Slavery in the United States (1858)
- Historical Sketch of Slavery, from the Earliest Periods (1859)
- The Code of the State of Georgia (1861)
- The Code of the State of Georgia (1873)
- The Colonel (1897)