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[226] months at this institution. He early displayed that decision of character and force of will that distinguished him in after life. He had an ardent longing for a military career, and though disappointed in his first efforts to secure an appointment as a cadet at the United States Military Academy, he was not cast down. Through the aid of General D. H. Hill, then a professor at Davidson, his second application was successful. He was given his appointment to the Academy by that sturdy old Roman, the Hon. Burton Craige, who before the days of rotation in office was long an able and distinguished member of Congress from our State. Ramseur spent the usual term of five years at the Academy, and was graduated with distinction in the class of 1860. Among his class-mates of national reputation were Generals James H. Wilson and Merritt, Colonel Wilson, commandant at United States Military Academy, and Colonel A. C. M. Pennington, United States army.

Through his courtesy, sincerity and the conscientious discharge of his duties while at West Point he formed many valued friendships both among his fellow-students and in the corps. After graduating, Ramseur entered the light-artillery service and was commissioned second lieutenant by brevet. He was in the United States army but a short time prior to the breaking out of hostilities, and during that time was assigned to duty at Fortress Monroe. In April, 1861, he resigned his commission in the old army and promptly tendered his sword to the Provisional Government of the Confederate States, then assembled at Montgomery. By this Government he was commissioned first lieutenant of artillery and ordered to the Department of Mississippi. About this time a battery of artillery was being formed at Raleigh, whose membership was comprised of the flower of the patriotic youth of the State. It was called ‘the Ellis Artillery,’ in honor of our then very able and patriotic Governor, whose early death by phthisis was an irreparable loss to our State in the early days of the war. The officers were Manly, Saunders, Guion and Bridgers, who, owing to our long peace establishment, were not familiar with even the rudiments of the drill. Therefore, with more patriotism than selfish emulation, they promptly applied through Lieutenant Saunders to their friend the Governor for some suitable and reliable commander. With a pardonable pride in so fine a company, Governor Ellis had doubtless previously considered this subject in his own mind. At all events, so soon as the request was made known he promptly replied: ‘I have the very man. You couldn't get a better. It is Lieutenant Ramseur.’ Thereupon

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