Sturart was an army officer.
A cadet at West Point, in the year before Whistler's class, he went into the cavalry, serving on the frontier, but resigned in 1861. He was rapidly promoted to Major General in the Confederate States army, and was the cavalry commander in Lee's Army of Northern Virginia 1862-1864. He died of wounds in 1864.
Cullum Memorial Edition, Register of Graduates and former cadets, United States Military Academy, West Point, 1980