John Bell Hood (June 1, 1831–August 30, 1879) was a Confederate general during the American Civil War. Hood had a reputation for bravery and aggressiveness since he was one of the few generals to personally lead his soldiers into combat.
Hood was born in Owingsville, Kentucky and was educated at the United States Military Academy; he graduated in 1853 ranked 44th out of 52. He initially served as an infantry officer but later transferred into the Second Cavalry in Texas in 1855. In 1861, Hood joined the Confederate army. In May 1862 he was promoted to brigadier general and put in charge of the Texas brigade. He served under Robert E. Lee as a divisional commander. He lost the use of an arm while leading his men at the Battle of Gettysburg and had a leg amputated at the Battle of Chickamauga.
In July 17, 1864 just before the Battle of Peachtree Creek, Hood was given command of the Army of Tennessee, replacing Joseph E. Johnston. In September, Hood retreated from Atlanta and marched north back into Tennessee in an attempt to draw Sherman out of Georgia. Instead, Sherman sent General George Henry Thomas to take control of the federal forces in the state. After failing to defeat a large part of the Union army under John McAllister Schofield, at Spring Hill, TN, the next day at the Battle of Franklin his troops were unsuccessful in their attempt to breach the Union breastworks. He was defeated again at the Battle of Nashville, in which most of his army was wiped out. After the catastrophe of Nashville, Hood resigned his temporary commission of full general.
After the war, Hood moved to Louisiana and became a cotton grower and an insurance broker. He died of yellow fever in New Orleans, and is buried in the Metairie Cemetery there.
Hood County, Texas and Fort Hood were named in his honor.