Joseph G. Swift

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Joseph Gardner Swift (1783-1865) - Born 31 Dec 1783 on Nantucket Island, Massachusetts. A career U.S. Army officer and engineer who was the first graduate of the United States Military Academy. He served in the War of 1812 and became the Chief Engineer of the U.S. Army (1812-1818) and Superintendent of the Military Academy (1812-1814) reaching the rank of Bvt. Brigadier General. He resigned from active service on 12 Nov 1818. He died 23 Jul 1865 in Geneva, New York.

Colonel Joseph G. Swift

He entered the United States Military Academy 14 Oct 1801 and graduated 12 Oct 1802 in the Class of 1802 ranking 1st out of two graduates. He remained at West Point until April 1804 and then was assigned to the Harbor defenses of the Cape Fear River in North Carolina at Fort Johnston (2) until 1807.

He was promoted to Colonel and served as Chief Engineer of the U.S. Army at the beginning of the War of 1812. He requested a field command and served as Chief of Engineer of the Northern Army and participated in the Battle of Chrysler's Farm winning a promotion to Bvt. Brigadier General in 1814. During the war he also served as the commander of U.S. Corps of Engineers and as Superintendent of United States Military Academy. After the war he was called upon to help with the rebuilding of Washington, D.C.

From1817 to 1818 he was on the Board of Engineers for the Atlantic Coast. He resigned from the U.S. Army on 12 Nov 1818.

Joseph Gardner Swift died on 23 Jul 1865 in Geneva, New York. He was buried in Washington Street Cemetery in Geneva, New York.

Father: Foster Swift (1760-1835)

Mother: Deborah Delano (1762-1824)


  • Louisa Margaret Walker (1789-1855) married 6 Jun 1805


  • James Foster Swift (1806-1830) born 15 May 1806, died 18 Mar 1830
  • Jonathan Williams Swift (1808-1877) born 30 Mar 1808, died 30 Jul 1877
  • Alexander Joseph Swift (1810-1837) born 1810, died 1837
  • Julius Henry Swift (1812-1850) born 27 Nov 1812, died 11 Feb 1850
  • Thomas Delano Swift (1812-1829) born 27 Nov 1812, died 2 Sep 1829
  • Sarah Delano Swift (1816-????)
  • Mckee Swift (1819-????)
  • Louisa Josephine Swift (1821-1859)
  • Charlotte Swift (1826-1840) born 5 Apr 1826, died 31 Dec 1840
  • James Thomas Swift (1829-1890) born 30 Aug 1829, died 31 Jul 1890
  • Foster Swift (1833-1875) born 31 Oct 1833, died 10 May 1875



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