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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:    Topic: ("Picketing") remove term  Topic: ("Confederate States of AmericaArmy") remove term

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Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

Date:  1865-02-19

Resource type:   correspondence

Topic include spending time with General Grant, speculating about the war, interaction between the Union and Rebel pickets, story about a particular rebel deserter that brings hope to Rutherford about the nearing conclusion of the war, reference to Dr. Thayer & his complimentary opinion of Rutherford, telling to a long absence (absent with out leave?) of a doctor that may lead to an opening for advancement for Rutherford.

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    Title:   Joseph Spafford to Mary Jane Spafford

    Creator:  Spafford, Joseph, 1837-1866

    Date:  1862-12-30

    Resource type:   correspondence

    Topics include the whole brigade on picket duty on Bull Run, a catholic church having been emptied of its pews so as to used for a hospital, a brief encounter with Rebel soldiers, Spafford's anger with the Rebels being able to infiltrate the Union troops, the captured rebel prisoner stated aim was to take Sutler's supplies, acceptance of officers' resignations and the potential promotion of George Clark to Captain.

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      Title:   Justus F. Gale to Sister

      Creator:  Gale, Justus F., 1837-1863

      Date:  1863-07-05

      Resource type:   correspondence

      Topics include family news, the weather, that Colonel Thomas is acting Major General now, that the Rebels are deserting often and are short of provisions, and that his Company while on picket duty talks back and forth to the Rebels and shares their food with them at times.

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        Title:   Lyman Barton to Hiram Barton

        Creator:  Barton, Lyman, 1839-1936

        Date:  1863-05-01

        Resource type:   correspondence

        Lyman Barton writes a detailed description of the capture of the Confederate battery at Hill’s Point on May 19, 1863, when his company and six others from the 8th Connecticut Infantry Regiment and eight companies of the 89th New York Infantry Regiment boarded the U.S.S. Stepping Stones and traveled up the Nansemond River to assault the rifle pits and fort.

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          Title:   Lyman S. Williams to Lois L. Williams

          Creator:  Williams, Lyman S., 1839-1905

          Date:  1865-02-19

          Resource type:   correspondence

          Topics include the health of the Essex boys, the size of the chapel built in camp, which can hold three hundred soldiers, the friendly banter between the pickets and the number of Confederate soldiers deserting to the Union side, his optimism about the end of the war coming soon, and how many fights he has been in.

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            Title:   Roswell Farnham to Laura

            Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

            Date:  1863-05-22

            Resource type:   correspondence

            Topics include small disturbances by the rebels nightly, the discussion of discharges, the death of Jenny (a horse?), the very hot weather, mentioning of Mr. Batchelder giving money as needed, horses Burnie and White Face improving in health, reference to Mr. Chamberlin living at the house & the desire to have him leave if he is willing before Farnham returns home.

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              Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

              Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

              Date:  1863-05-16

              Resource type:   correspondence

              Topics include the enemy posting infantry pickets on the other side of the Rappahannock, moving to Bristol Station, Virginia, locations of other companies, at home the death of Jenny (possibly a horse) caused by "bots" (a disease of mammals, especially cattle and horses, caused by infestation of the stomach or intestines with botfly larvae), more encouragement to have his wife drink porter.

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                Title:   William Wirt Henry to Mary Jane Henry

                Creator:  Henry, William Wirt, 1831-1915

                Date:  1863-10-28

                Resource type:   correspondence

                Brief letter reveals a sense of humor among the officers (General Morris) regarding picket responsibilities of the division officer of the day ; word of advancing Rebels had the pickets on alert ; but Rebels only scavenging after railroad iron ; railroad being repaired ; 10th Vermont complimented by General French.

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