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General Sheridan’s portrait from the Army Art Collection. It is painted by William F. Cogswell, a favored contemporary who also did portraits of Lincoln and Grant.

In his memoirs, Phil Sheridan stated that he was born in Albany, N.Y. But there is no birth or baptismal record to back that claim. People in County Cavan, Ireland, have claimed for generations that Sheridan was born there. His mother mentioned two possible places of nativity. n the summer of 1871, returning from observing the Franco-Prussian War, the general visited England, Scotland, and finally Ireland.

According to a 1925 article provided by Cavan Research Centre, during Sheridan’s visit to Dublin, he invited a first cousin, Anthony Sheridan, to remain with him during his stay. Anthony’s brother, Tom, later told the article’s author that “the General spoke often of his home in East Cavan, and was proud of the fact that he was a native Irishman.” Sheridan was four-months-old when his parents landed in America, a priest from Somerset told the author, raising the question: How would Sheridan have come to know of his East Cavan home? (Joseph E. Gannon)