Back to top

Benjamin Hardin Helm (Notable Americans)

Reference

Rossiter Johnson, ed., “Helm, Benjamin Hardin,” The Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans, vol. 5 (Boston:  The Biographical Society, 1904).

HELM, Benjamin Hardin, soldier, was born in Elizabethtown, Ky., in 1830; son of John Larue and Lucinda Barbour (Hardin) Helm, and grandson of George B.  Helm and of Benjamin Hardin. He was graduated at the U.S. military academy in 1851, was assigned to the dragoon service at the U.S. cavalry school, Carlisle, Pa., and was afterward on frontier duty at Fort Lincoln, Texas. He resigned from the army in 1852, studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1854, and [practiced] law in Elizabethtown, 1854-58, and at Louisville, 1856-61.  He was a representative in the state Louisville, 1856-61.  He was a representative in the state legislature, 1855-56, and state's attorney, 1856-58.  He was married in 1856 to Emilie, daughter of Robert S. Todd.  He joined the Confederate army in 1861 as colonel of the 1st Kentucky cavalry, and for bravery at Shiloh was made a brigadier-general, March 14, 1862.  He commanded the 3d brigade of Gen. Charles Clark's 1st division in the army of Gen. John C. Breckinridge in the unsuccessful attack on Baton Rouge, La., Aug. 5, 1862, where he had his horse shot and was wounded.  He commanded the 1st brigade in Breckinridge's division, D. H. Hill's corps in the battle of Chickamauga, where he conducted several brilliant movements, including a successful attack on Negley's infantry at Glass's Mill, Sept. 19, 1863.  He was killed while leading his brigade on the morning of the 20th in an endeavor to carry the Federal breastworks in order to protect his men exposed to a flank fire.  He died at Chickamauga, Ga., Sept. 20, 1863.
How to Cite This Page: "Benjamin Hardin Helm (Notable Americans)," House Divided: The Civil War Research Engine at Dickinson College, http://hd.housedivided.dickinson.edu/node/17953.