Augustus Ludlow Case was born 3 February 1812 at Newburgh, New York and was appointed midshipman in 1828.

He participated in the Wilkes Expedition of 1837–42 that discovered Antarctica, the Mexican War and the Civil War, when he was Fleet Captain of the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron.

Promoted rear admiral in 1872 while serviing as Chief of the Bureau of Ordinance, he later commanded the European Squadron and the combined European, North and South Atlantic Fleets assembled at Key West in 1874.

Rear Admiral Case died at Washington 16 February 1893.