|During the Mexican–American War, Reynolds was a captain in the U.S. Army, serving as the Army's assistant
Quartermaster beginning August 4, 1847. He was at this rank on March 15, 1848, when he vacated his line
commission. Reynolds was dismissed from the U.S. Army on October 8, 1855, following the disappearance of
$126,307 USD from Reynolds' office. When the funds were later accounted for, he was restored to his previous rank
of captain as of March 29, 1858.
During the American Civil War, Reynolds chose to follow his home state and the Confederate cause. He went AWOL
from the U.S. Army and entered the Confederate States Army in 1861. He was appointed a captain in the
Confederate Infantry on March 16, and promoted to colonel of the 50th Virginia Infantry on July 10. His soldiers
called him "Old Gauley."
Reynolds then was sent to the Western Theater. He joined Edmund Kirby Smith's command in the Army of Kentucky
throughout the rest of 1861 and most of 1862. After the Kentucky Campaign failed in its object, Smith's army joined
Gen. Braxton Bragg's Army of Tennessee for reorganization. On December 16, 1862, Confederate President
Jefferson Davis ordered the transfer of Maj. Gen. Carter L. Stevenson's division to Lt. Gen. John C. Pemberton's
army. Reynolds, commanding a brigade in Stevenson's division, went with his troops to Vicksburg.
Unlike the other three brigades of Stevenson's division, Reynolds' brigade suffered only lightly at the Battle of
Champion's Hill. During the Siege of Vicksburg his brigade held a portion of the southern-most sector near the
"Salient Work”. His brigade lost 14 killed, 25 wounded, and 14 missing during the siege. Reynolds' brigade was part
of the garrison that surrendered on July 4, 1863.
Reynolds was exchanged on October 13, 1863, and promoted to brigadier general on September 14. He took part in
the Chattanooga Campaign fighting an ill-fated action at Missionary Ridge. He also took part in the Atlanta
Campaign and was wounded at the Battle of New Hope Church. Late in the war he was appointed Assistant Inspector
General of the District of Georgia a position he held until the surrender, being paroled on 8 May, 1865.
Reynolds entered the service of Egyptian Khedive in 1869 as a colonel in the Egyptian Army. Egyptian chief of staff,
Charles Pomeroy Stone assigned Reynolds to serve as Quartermaster, Commissary officer, and Paymaster General.
He and his wife (whom he referred to as Duchess), and his son Frank, and Frank's wife and son took up residence in
Alexandria, Egypt. They became friends with a small circle of American expatriates that included Stone, William W.
Loring, and Raleigh E. Colston.
It was at this time that Reynolds had a hand in the Old West-style gunfight that took place on the streets of Cairo
between three former Confederate officers in Egyptian service and the United States Consul-General.
Tragedy struck the family in 1875. The previous year Frank Reynolds had returned to the United States with his wife
and son to buy Remington rifles for the Egyptian government. In 1875, Frank became sick and died in Ilion, New
York. After this, Mrs. Reynolds returned to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where she soon died. At this time, Reynolds
lost his support group of expatriates when most of the American officers left for the war against Ethiopia. With his
pay from the Egyptian government in arrears and owing his creditors money, he was forced to move into a seedy
boarding house. He died in bed there on May 26, 1876. Alcoholism may have been a contributing factor.
The exact whereabouts of Reynolds' remains are not known; they could be in an unmarked grave in Alexandria or in
the Patton Tomb located in Lewisburg, West Virginia, at the Old Stone Presbyterian Churchyard. In his memory a
cenotaph was erected in St. James the Less Cemetery located in Philadelphia.
L. Fiorillo - Photographer