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Vermonters in the Civil War

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Collection Overview

Vermont soldiers in the Civil War wrote an enormous quantity of letters and diaries, of which many thousands have survived in libraries, historical societies, and in private hands. This collection represents a selection of letters and diaries from the University of Vermont and the Vermont Historical Society.

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Time Period Covered: January 1, 1861 - February 28, 1864 


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Browsing by:    Recipient: ("Barton,Melissa") remove term

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Title:   Hiram H. Barton to Melissa Barton

Creator:  Barton, Hiram H., 1836-1903

Date:  1863-02-22

Resource type:   correspondence

Topics include the news that he is in the hospital at New Bern, North Carolina, but he is getting better. He also discusses the lateness of the pay and his attempts to stay out of debt, a description of the city, war profiteers, and his opinion of the celebration of Washington’s birthday and how that general might view the war.

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    Title:   Hiram H. Barton to Melissa Barton

    Creator:  Barton, Hiram H., 1836-1903

    Date:  1863-02-23

    Resource type:   correspondence

    A poem titled “The Campaign with McClellan 1862” by William Issard, a private in the 101st Pennsylvania Infantry, copied by Hiram Barton. The poem focuses on Wessell’s Division during the Seven Days Battles, and mentions the 101st and 103rd Pennsylvania Regiments and the 85th, 92nd, and 96th New York Regiments.

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      Title:   Hiram H. Barton to Melissa Barton

      Creator:  Barton, Hiram H., 1836-1903

      Date:  1863-06-23

      Resource type:   correspondence

      Writing from Camp Gray in Plymouth, North Carolina Barton speaks of white and black North Carolinians coming in to Union lines to join the Union Army, of the brogue they speak, of the sights he has seen in battle, his dislike of army life, particularly the killing. Writes of rumors about Vicksburg and what it would mean for the Union cause if it is taken.

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        Title:   Hiram H. Barton to Melissa Barton

        Creator:  Barton, Hiram H., 1836-1903

        Date:  1864-07-08

        Resource type:   correspondence

        Hiram Barton writes of an attack on the Union works by a Confederate Brigade at the Seige of Petersburg on June 24th. He also writes of the danger of raising one’s head above the breast works during the day, and of the soldiers killed. As well he writes of the heat and how exhausted the men are after spending two or three days in the trenchs.

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          Title:   Lyman Barton to Hiram Barton

          Creator:  Barton, Lyman, 1839-1936

          Date:  1864-03-08

          Resource type:   correspondence

          Lyman Barton mentions an attack on his Brigade at Deep Creek, Virginia and the death of two men from the 9th New Jersey Regiment who had just returned from a furlough. He also writes of men returning to the 8th Connecticut Regiment after their reenlistment furlough, who had second thoughts about reenlisting. Also he writes of how many got married while on leave. At the end of the letter he gives news of his brothers Henry, James and Theodore and their addresses.

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            Title:   Lyman Barton to Hiram Barton

            Creator:  Barton, Lyman, 1839-1936

            Date:  [1864-05]-17

            Resource type:   correspondence

            Lyman Barton writes of the events surrounding the Battle of Port Waltham Junction on May 6 and 7. He also lists some of the wounded and killed, including his brother, James Barton, who died of wounds received at the Battle of the Wilderness.

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              Title:   Lyman Barton to Melissa Barton

              Creator:  Barton, Lyman, 1839-1936

              Date:  1863-03-15

              Resource type:   correspondence

              Lyman Barton writes of his travels from Fredericksburg to Newport News via a steamer, and then on to Suffolk. While at Newport News he saw a monitor and the U.S.S. Galena, as well as the wrecks of the U.S.S. Merrimack (C.S.S. Virginia) and the U.S.S. Cumberland and U.S.S. Congress. He also comments on the lack of alcohol available to the troops and that while he is not a drinker, he is “as bad can be” and that it is “hard spoiling a rotten egg.”

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                Title:   Lyman Barton to Melissa Barton

                Creator:  Barton, Lyman, 1839-1936

                Date:  1863-08-02

                Resource type:   correspondence

                Lyman writes about wishing to receive more letters from his sister, as he is lonely in camp, even though it sounds like he is enjoying himself. He points out the battles printed on the bottom of the writing paper he is using, saying that he was in the last four of them. The letter continues with a detailed description of the movements of his Brigade. He also mentions “confiscating” a beef, writing that soldiers don’t steal, only confiscate and the only difficulty was getting the beef into the camp.

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                  Title:   Lyman Barton to Melissa Barton

                  Creator:  Barton, Lyman, 1839-1936

                  Date:  1863-09-10

                  Resource type:   correspondence

                  Lyman Barton writes of the movements of his Brigade and mentions that the Regiment has received 166 conscripts and that all but one are substitutes. He also mentions that he is unwell.

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                    Title:   Lyman Barton to Melissa Barton

                    Creator:  Barton, Lyman, 1839-1936

                    Date:  1863-12-01

                    Resource type:   correspondence

                    Lyman Barton writes of his return to his regiment after spending time at home on sick leave. He also writes of two men being shot for desertion from his regiment, one from his own company. Both men were drafted and he tells the story of the wife of one man coming to camp after his execution, of her being told the news of his death by the company cook, of Portsmouth newspaper reports on Gen Grant and Gen Meade's capture of Rebel prisoners, of comfortable tent to live in with stove.

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                      Title:   Lyman Barton to Melissa Barton

                      Creator:  Barton, Lyman, 1839-1936

                      Date:  1864-01-31

                      Resource type:   correspondence

                      Lyman Barton writes of returning to his regiment, even though he was due more sick leave. He also comments on men from Moriah and Crown Point who have not enlisted and those who have. As well he mentions gossip from home and teases his sister about her Vermont suitor. Finally, he includes a memoranda of his activities from January 1 to January 15, including detailing the food he eats daily and the games played by the 15th Connecticut Regiment on New Year’s Day.

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                        Title:   Lyman Barton to Melissa Barton

                        Creator:  Barton, Lyman, 1839-1936

                        Date:  1864-07-07

                        Resource type:   correspondence

                        Lyman Barton comments on the Second Battle of Petersburg on June 15 to 18, writing that though they were almost successful in taking Petersburg, the arrival of General Hancock slowed the assault until the defenses were fortified. He also writes of his sister mistaking shoulder scales, worn by privates, for an officer’s badge in a photograph she received, mentioning that the Colored Troops wore these shoulder scales but discarded them when in the field. He gives only a passing mention to the Battle of Cold Harbor.

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                          Title:   Lyman Barton to Melissa Barton

                          Creator:  Barton, Lyman, 1839-1936

                          Date:  1864-08-12

                          Resource type:   correspondence

                          Lyman Barton writes of how disgusted he is with the outcome of the Battle of the Crater (i.e. Battle of Petersburg Cater, Va.) ,and how he feels it was the “shamefullest thing that I have seen or herd of since I have been out” blaming generals of jealousy of one another resulting in great loss of men. He also writes of having been in 12 or 13 battles and not gotten hurt yet plus gives news of two of his brothers, Henry and Hiram, who are both in the hospital.

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                            Title:   Lyman Barton to Sister

                            Creator:  Barton, Lyman

                            Date:  1862-11-25

                            Resource type:   correspondence

                            Topics include an account of the Battle of Antetam [sic], the cold weather, the high prices of goods at camp, and reports on the health of other soldiers and family members.

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                              Title:   Theodore Barton to Melissa Barton

                              Creator:  Barton, Theodore, 1842-1926

                              Date:  1863-01-25

                              Resource type:   correspondence

                              Theodore Lyman writes of seeing his brother Lyman, Company K, 8th Connecticut Infantry Regiment, who is camped only two miles away. He also writes of the attempt by General Burnside to cross the Rappahannock and how the Confederate soldiers jeered and set up a sign saying “Burnside stuck in the mud.”

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                                Title:   Theodore Barton to Melissa Barton

                                Creator:  Barton, Theodore, 1842-1926

                                Date:  1863-02-25

                                Resource type:   correspondence

                                Theodore Barton writes that there is a foot of snow but it is melting fast. He also writes of his pleasure at the news of the draft, as he would be happy to see some of those who stayed behind and to give them the same encouragement they gave to him about how easy it would be to “whip” the South. He also mentions that there is not much drinking of alcohol going on.

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                                  Title:   Theodore Barton to Sister

                                  Creator:  Barton, Theodore

                                  Date:  1862-09-29

                                  Resource type:   correspondence

                                  Topics include the journey from Harrison's Landing to Boliver via Newport News and Alexandria. Names several wounded and deceased soldiers, perhaps known by his sister. Concludes with a somewhat gruesome description of "picnic."

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