BG Zachariah H. C. Dees
With the passage of Alabama's ordinance of secession, Deas enlisted in the Confederate army in the Alabama Volunteer Infantry. He served as aide-de-camp to General Joseph E. Johnston during the First Battle of Manassas. He was commissioned as colonel of the 22nd Alabama, a regiment he helped raise and equip, purchasing 800 Enfield rifles with gold. He led his men at the Battle of Shiloh, where assumed command of the brigade on the first day of fighting before falling with a severe wound the following day.
After recovering. he commanded a brigade under General Braxton Braggin the Kentucky Campaign. His command consisted of the 19th Alabama, 22nd Alabama, 25th Alabama, 39th Alabama, 50th Alabama, 17th Alabama Battalion Sharpshooters, and Dent's Alabama Battery. He was appointed as a brigadier general on December 13, 1862, and fought at the Battle of Chickamauga, where his men routed the Union division of Philip H. Sheridan and killed Brig. Gen. William H. Lytle. They also captured seventeen artillery pieces.
Deas continued to lead his brigade through the Atlanta Campaign and the subsequent fighting in Tennessee, where he was again wounded at the Battle of Franklin. He participated in the Carolinas Campaign, but took ill at Raleigh, North Carolina, in March 1865 and had to leave his field command prior to the surrender at Bennett Place.
After the war, Deas returned to his cotton brokerage. He owned a seat on the New York Stock Exchange.
Deas died on March 8, 1882 and is buried in Woodlawn Cemetery in The Bronx, New York City