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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: ("Rutherford, Hannah") remove term

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Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

Date:  1862-09-28

Resource type:   correspondence

Rutherford writes of the illness of the his assistant surgeon, Dr. Clarke, of his own excellent health, and all he is enjoying at camp including a hive of bees. He writes of fresh meat, fowl and fruit available to eat, of a companion dog and of his horse he admires so much. He speaks of the difference in military medical care of the soldiers and notes how the care results in more or fewer sick soldiers and of deaths.

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    Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

    Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

    Date:  1862-08-31

    Resource type:   correspondence

    Dr. Rutherford writes from Camp Washburn about his improved health from the dysentery from which he has suffered, medicine he took, his heavy responsibilities caring for sick soldiers, and anticipation of leaving for Virginia on Friday. He writes of missing home.

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      Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

      Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

      Date:  1862-09-15

      Resource type:   correspondence

      Dr. Rutherford writes of camp life in the open air at "Camp Briggs" located along the Potomac River, of the proximity to the rebels and of being able to hear the firing of guns. He writes of being on the move, in the saddle all day, of having no tents to sleep in and being very happy with his situation.

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        Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

        Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

        Date:  1862-10-19

        Resource type:   correspondence

        Rutherford writes to wife, Hannnah,about the regiment's movement to his camp at Seneca Creek in Maryland. Topics include what was involved in the moving of the troops at night, the baggage he carried on horseback, his pride for his mare, of feeling proud to serve his country in time of need, of him being put in charge of building of a hospital to be named after him and called the Rutherford Hospital.

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          Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

          Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

          Date:  1862-11-05

          Resource type:   correspondence

          Dr. Rutherford writes of a battle near Leesburgh some 14 miles from the camp near Seneca Creek (Maryland?) the outcome of which is not known, of the filthy condition of some of the soldiers, of an epidemic of Typhoid fever with the loss of over a dozen men to the illness. He writes of his winter living accommodations of which he is very happy and mentions "Mose the Moor", the runaway black slave boy who tends to him. Also writes of a review from the Brigadier General, and the health of Rutherford’s family.

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            Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

            Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

            Date:  1862-11-15

            Resource type:   correspondence

            Rutherford writes of the regiment's movement to Camp Grove Offults Cup, Maryland. Also of his contempt for soldiers who want to shirk their military duties, of how well the truly sick soldiers are cared for in the hospital, and a slanderous report written about the Surgeon which Rutherford firmly denies, gives his side of the story including military discipline and an account of who a man named Murk who is responsible for the false report.

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              Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

              Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

              Date:  1862-08-27

              Resource type:   correspondence

              The surgeon writes from Camp Washburn about being infected with dysentery, the regiment being mustered on Thursday, and a visit from the Governor and the Governor's son.

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                Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                Date:  1862-08-30

                Resource type:   correspondence

                Dr. Rutherford writes a very brief letter from Brattleboro about his improving health and about his expected appearance in a grand inspection that morning by Governor Frederick Holbrook.

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                  Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                  Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                  Date:  1862-10-07

                  Resource type:   correspondence

                  Rutherford writes to his wife, Hannah, about life in camp along the Potomac River. Many soldiers have fevers, his assistant surgeon is ill but he continues to keep up with all the work needing to be done. He writes of a 17 year old male runaway slave named Moses, who takes care of him and his horse, Lady Lightfoot and complains of how slow the mail is.

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                    Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                    Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                    Date:  1862-12-06

                    Resource type:   correspondence

                    Rutherford writes a description of Thanksgiving dinner in camp prepared with the help of the officers' wives, a reference to John Piper his "orderly", of soldiers plans to steal a gun from a neighboring farmer in order to get some turkeys and chickens for the holiday meal, of their arrest, the unpleasant weather, of Rutherford being jaundice and of his black boy Moses being sick and likely to die.

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                      Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                      Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                      Date:  1862-12-25

                      Resource type:   correspondence

                      Topics include the regiment guarding the Potomac River at Whitesford, the Rebels gathering on the hills opposite the camp, of anticipating Christmas dinner and a medical disaster at Washington requiring more personnel in the medical corps.

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                        Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                        Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                        Date:  1862-12-29

                        Resource type:   correspondence

                        Topics include Christmas at Camp Jewett, southern hospitality, the enemy crossing the river to Harrisons Island, and the holding of a council of war.

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                          Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                          Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                          Date:  1862-11-25

                          Resource type:   correspondence

                          Topics include the possibility of action, ammunition and the mini ball, of high morale among the soldiers, of John Piper being described as the best marksman and now being Rutherford's body guard, an order from the War Department for Surgeons to remove themselves from action as much as possible, a case of Typhoid and the improbability of Rutherford taking a leave of absence at this time.

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                            Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                            Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                            Date:  1862-11-27

                            Resource type:   correspondence

                            Topics include Rutherford’s hope to send money home to his wife Hannah, of anticipation of having a Thanksgiving dinner in camp, the good health of the entire family, of the Colonel praising Rutherford for his performance of medical duties and of the man Murk who wrote slanderous reports of the surgeons being put on trial.

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                              Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                              Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                              Date:  1863-01-16

                              Resource type:   correspondence

                              Topics include being in Baltimore, assisting with errands in the city for fellow officers, guarding the river for 20 miles, not receiving an appointment because some men provided bad accounts of Rutherford to the Governor, taking charge of hospital, references to Col. Jewett and Dr. Willard Augustus Childe (surgeon), inquiring after his children and his premonitions regarding their welfare.

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                                Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                                Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                                Date:  1863-01-20

                                Resource type:   correspondence

                                Writes of medical treatment for diphtheria if his children ever come down with the illness, a possible leave of absence for Dr. Willard Augustus Childe as he has been in service for 20 months without one, expresses his anger at criticism from folks back home about what the military ought to be doing and states the need for the Union to conquer the South.

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                                  Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                                  Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                                  Date:  1863-01-25

                                  Resource type:   correspondence

                                  Writing from White's Ford, Maryland two letters of Jan 23 (or 25?) and 27 topics include photographs, military pay, of ambulance drill to teach hospital attendants medical practices, warm weather, men singing, being made the Surgeon if Dr. Willard Augustus Childe is promoted, moving to Poolesville, Maryland, Col. A. B. Jewett in command of the Brigade, the disgrace of two officers by getting drunk, the potential for a man from his Vermont county to receive a dishonorable discharge and of him being in good health.

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                                    Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                                    Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                                    Date:  1863-02-03

                                    Resource type:   correspondence

                                    From White's Ford, MD topics include Rutherford in charge of hospital while Dr. Willard Augustus Childe returns home to get married, sickness among the men less than in other regiments, a visit from the Inspector General with excellent reports on how he runs his department, expresses his anger and outrage at the complaining of people back home about having to pay taxes because of the war.

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                                      Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                                      Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                                      Date:  1863-04-10

                                      Resource type:   correspondence

                                      Topics include the progress being made on the house, military pay slow in being received, the children's bad reactions to a vaccination with suggestion for treatment, follow up visits to Mr. Trundle with his erysipelas, a big dinner in camp with the officers including Col. Jewett, the men practice shooting a new rifle received in camp with targets being cattle grazing across the river owned by the Secessionists and a flock to ducks.

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                                        Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                                        Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                                        Date:  1863-04-11

                                        Resource type:   correspondence

                                        Two letters dated April 10 and 11 topics include the possibility of moving to Poolesville due to weather, reference back to the man named Pleasants sentenced to prison and hard labor for harboring the enemy, the arrest and conviction of the hospital steward for stealing from the dead, and the few number of men who are sick in the regiment compared to other regiments, sudden preparations for going into the field with possibility of engaging the enemy.

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                                          Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                                          Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                                          Date:  1862-12-13

                                          Resource type:   correspondence

                                          Rutherford writes to wife Hannah about the death of General Newcomb, Rutherford's medical duties and the birth of Mrs. Turn’s baby.

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                                            Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                                            Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                                            Date:  1862-12-18

                                            Resource type:   correspondence

                                            Topics include family money troubles, a description of his horse Lady Lightfoot, anticipation of a Rebel raid, and a description of the winter quarters and John tending to his comforts as his "nig" (Moses) has been sick, reference to the troublesome Murk.

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                                              Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                                              Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                                              Date:  1863-01-02

                                              Resource type:   correspondence

                                              Writing from camp at White's Ford (over the Potomac River) two letters dated Jan 2 and Jan 6 include topics of a description of the night of the expected fight, of having enough food to eat that he is gaining weight, of the camp's glee club singing, of being homesick and wanting a leave but may be on the eve of "some great event", a description of the camp ground, promotions within the camp including himself as Acting Surgeon and the possibility of a brigade hospital being created with himself most likely being put in charge of it.

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                                                Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                                                Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                                                Date:  1863-01-13

                                                Resource type:   correspondence

                                                Writing from camp in Maryland topics include an accident that happened to Rutherford's daughter Kittie, an attempt for a leave of absense, of sending some military pay home via express and Rutherford's role of Acting Surgeon.

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                                                  Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                                                  Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                                                  Date:  1863-03-02

                                                  Resource type:   correspondence

                                                  Topics include the failure to receive a leave of absence, not wishing to pay any old debts, a close call with Major White's brigade near Leesburgh, and a journey to Portsville (Poolesville??), saw a sham fight (war game?) in which his mare performed splendidly, his health is good but smallpox in the brigade with a request for his wife to save the scabs from his children's arms so that he may have matter for vaccine.

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