About this Famous Person
George B. MCCLELLAN
Major general during the American Civil War and the Democratic presidential nominee in 1864
Source : Tim DOWLING
McClellan was born in Philadelphia, the son of a prominent surgical ophthalmologist, Dr. George McClellan (1796–1847), the founder of Jefferson Medical College. His father's family was of Scottish heritage. His mother was Elizabeth Sophia Steinmetz Brinton McClellan (1800–1889), daughter of a leading Pennsylvania family, a woman noted for her "considerable grace and refinement". The couple produced five children: a daughter, Frederica; then three sons, John, George, and Arthur; and a second daughter, Mary. McClellan was the great-grandson of Revolutionary War general Samuel McClellan of Woodstock, Connecticut. He first attended the University of Pennsylvania in 1840 at age 13, resigning himself to the study of law. After two years, he changed his goal to military service. With the assistance of his father's letter to President John Tyler, young George was accepted at the United States Military Academy in 1842, the academy having waived its normal minimum age of 16.