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LETTERS & DIARIES Back to Previous Page

NEW! The Eldredge Civil War Diary

Frank Eldredge enlisted in the 7th Regiment, O.V.I. on April 25, 1861 for a 60 day term, and reenlisted for three years thereafter. He remained with his unit until March 24, 1864, when he was honorably discharged. His regiment fought many battles in Virginia, and Eldredge was wounded at the Battle of Port Republic and again at Chancellorsville. He also fought at Antietam, Gettysburg, and Lookout Mountain, Tn.

The Eldridge Civil War Diary contains 40 pages of entries and a 29 page insert in the back, dating from July 4 1861 to August 4, 1862.

Photo of Diary

The Follett Collection

LETTERS In August 1861 the oldest of three brothers of an Illinois family volunteered for service in response to President Abraham Lincoln�s call to arms to defend the Union. A short time later a second brother enlisted to serve his country, and, in 1862, a third brother joined the Union Army. For the family the war would be a story of triumph and heartbreak, life and death, opportunity seized and opportunity lost.

The Follett Diary

Open Diary Melville Cox Follett's Civil War Diary (Jan. 24th-Nov.7th, 1863). "I commenced keeping diary in Tom Sandle's book he being gone the Devil knows where..."

The Fox Collection

LETTERS These letters were written to Charles H. Fox by his older brothers of Trenton, NJ, from 1861 to 1865. The correspondence begins in the fall of 1861 with Samuel and Edward Fox in the 6th New Jersey Volunteers stationed near Washington, DC. Samuel is a drummer.

The Michael Hileman Memoirs

Michael & Wife Amanda Fascinating account of Michael Hileman's war years, starting with the beginning "winds of war" until he returns home after the war. Michael served in the 96th Illinois fighting at the Battles of Perryville, Fort Donelson, Chickamauga and Nashville. He covers his capture and experiences in several Confederate prisons including the infamous Andersonville.

Amos Hardy Letters

"We remained there untill May 1864 when we were ordered to the Front then at Spotsylvania Va. On the 19th of that month we received our first Baptism of fire from Ewell�s Veterans and lost in killed and wounded 386 men. I was wounded in the right thigh and immediately sent to Washington, and from thereI received furlough of 80 days and went home. At the expiration of my furlough I rejoined my Hospital at Columbian Hospital and in August I rejoined my ----- at Petersburg and occupying that part of our works known as Fort Hell."

Robert Cruikshank Letters

Robert Cruikshank enlisted in the 123 New York Infantry Regiment as a sergeant, and by the end of the war was a 1st Lieutenant. He served in the Eastern and Western Theaters of war, and his first taste of battle came at the Battle of Chancellorsville, as he tells his wife:
"I have passed four fearful days and nights since I last wrote you. We have had the hardest fought battle of the War and gained nothing but suffered defeat with a terrible loss of life and property. The enemy's loss must have been greater than ours as they made the attack. I am as well as could be expected considering the physical, mental and nervous strain that I have passed through. I have seen all that there is of war; I have been well initiated having been under fire for three consecutive days. It is very lonesome for me, there are so many of the men missing, some never to return."
Cruikshank survived the war, as did his 150 letters home.

The John Ritland Memoirs

John Ritland John Ritland fought with the 32 Iowa Infantry from 1862 to 1865. He participated in the red River Campaign, and the Battles of Ft. DeRussy, Pleasant Hill, Nashville, and Ft Blakely. Of the Battle of Nashville, he said "Near the end of the second day's fighting, we saw our flag go up on the breastworks to the right of us, which meant our boys had broken through the rebel lines. Then came our turn to start from the slough and go directly at the fort to capture, if possible, a share of it. We went on a rapid run, firing as we ran, but not all of us got by unscathed, for soon one of my companions fell, and then another, but we could stop at nothing now, and after a fierce onslaught, we occupied the fort."

Dwight Henry Cory Letters & Diary

Dwight Cory

Dwight Henry Cory served in the 6th Ohio Cavalry. He fought in the Eastern Theater and writes about many of the battles in letters home. After the battles of Gettysburg, Cory's regiment was involved in the capture of a Confederate wagon train, as he tells his wife:

"We, the troops of Gen Kilpatrick's brigade, went over the mountain and took 1500 prisoners and 160 wagons loaded with all kinds of stores that they had taken in Pa, and about 100 wounded Rebs. We started in pursuit of the train, about four in the p.m. and rode all night and it rained and was very dark, but this didn't hinder our artillery from sending a shot through five or six wagons as they were going along the road. Then our men, mostly from our reg. charged among them and took the whole thing, including Gen. Jones who was dressed as a citizen."

Letters of William Samuel Craig

William S. Craig

William S. Craig did not mind life in the 116th Illinois Infantry regiments, but, he wrote his wife, he didn't like what it was doing to many of his fellow soldiers. It was thoughts of his family kept him from following their path:

"This rebellion will be the ruination of thousands of men. They have become hardened to everything. Neither cares for God nor man and I among the rest but I still feel for my fellow man. I have not forgotten the kind words and sweet invitation that has been offered to me even from my loving wife. Still I have become hardened more than ever I did in my life. Still I am a believer of everything that is good."

The James M. Randall Diary

James M. Randall was born in Canton, Ohio and enlisted his services in the Union Army in October of 1861 at the age of twenty. Initially enlisting in Co. "B" of the 14th Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry, he was commissioned 2nd Lieutenant of the 21st Wisconsin in July of 1862 where he rose to the rank of Captain. Assigned to forces under Ulysses S. Grant, in Tennessee, Randall maintains his diary from Shiloh to Sherman's campaign through the Carolinas. His detailed observations of the war are also mentioned in letters to his wife, which are included in his diary.

The Hackworth Collection

The Hackworth letters is a collection written by several members of the Hackworth family and covering a period of ten years, including the Civil War. This collection provides a glimpse of what life was like in Northern Alabama before, during, and after the war. Subjects include life on the farm, the Vicksburg Campaign, riding with Nathan Bedford Forrest, and Reconstruction after the war.

LETTERS & DIARIES Back to Previous Page

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