A Civil War Biography
Robert Hopkins Hatton
Hatton was born 2 November 1826 in Steubenville, Jefferson County,
Ohio. His family moved to Tennessee not long after he was born. He
attended the common schools then graduated in 1847 from the
Cumberland University in Lebanon, Tennessee. He remained at the
university as a tutor until 1848 then in the law school until 1849.
Hatton was principal of the Woodland Academy in Sumner County,
Tennessee until he was admitted to the bar in 1850 and established a
practice in Lebanon in 1850. He was named a trustee of Cumberland
University in 1854, a position he held until his death.
He was elected to the Tennessee House of Representatives in 1855 and
served until 1857 when he ran unsuccessfully for governor of
Tennessee. He was elected to the US House of Representatives
representing the 5th Tennessee district and served from 4 March 1859
until 3 March 1861.
Although he believed in preserving the Union once Abraham Lincoln
called for troops Hatton chose to protect his state from aggression.
He formed the Lebanon Blues and was elected colonel of the 7th
Tennessee Volunteer Infantry, the regiment to which the Blues were
attached, on 26 May 1861. He commanded the regiment at Cheat
Mountain and Savage Station. He was promoted to brigadier general on
23 May 1862 and given command of the 5th Brigade/ Gustavus W.
Smith's Division/ I Corps Army of Virginia. While leading his
brigade at Seven Pines on 31 May 1862, Hatton was killed.
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