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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: ("Homesickness") remove term

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Title:   Charles F. Bancroft to Clarissa Bancroft

Creator:  Bancroft, Charles F., 1835-1862

Date:  1862-01-11

Resource type:   correspondence

Topics include the illness of Ephraim D. Dutton and the treatment he is getting from Bancroft, who is watching over Dutton. Bancroft thinks he'll recover when taken to a hospital. Fever, dysentery, lung ailments are compounded by homesickness, according to Bancroft. B. asks for sausage, cayenne pepper, and brandy from home. Mentions daguerreotype of "that little schoolmarm" and the problem of blue eyes. Final request: burn this letter after you read it! "Chain Bridge" refers to a site near Washington, D.C.

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    Title:   Charles F. Bancroft to Parents

    Creator:  Bancroft, Charles F., 1835-1862

    Date:  1862-02-02

    Resource type:   correspondence

    Topics include reminiscences of church meetings in Vt., stimulated by his attendance of them at camp; how much he enjoys the supplies (footwear, clothing, food, brandy) from home; some medical treatment that was improved with brandy; his appreciation of family and home; a few words about postal delivery; and a map of the South he plans to give to his father. -- Because of winter, the war has slackened off a bit. Lincoln is still trying to force McClellan to act.

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      Title:   George W. Quimby to Emeline B. Masta

      Creator:  Quimby, George W., 1835-1862

      Date:  1862-09-13

      Resource type:   correspondence

      Topics include the hardships of war, the unfairness between the men who are at home and those that are fighting, and the progress of George W. Quimby’s recuperation. Mentions a long march "on a certain Sunday" from Charles City C. H. (Court House) across the Chickahominy River.

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        Title:   Henry A. Smith to Family

        Creator:  Smith, Henry A., d. 1864

        Date:  1862-07-05

        Resource type:   correspondence

        From Snickers Ferry on the Shenandoah River topics include news from Richmond, rumor that Stonewall Jackson was killed, having enough to eat including local peaches & cherries found in Virginia, horses well fed, men on picket duty, newspaper report that General McClellan taken prisoner along with 40,000 of his men, and Henry Smith's homesickness.

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          Title:   Henry A. Smith to Family

          Creator:  Smith, Henry A., d. 1864

          Date:  1863-10-23

          Resource type:   correspondence

          Topics include his hope to be released soon and his wish for news about the farm and the fall harvest.

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            Title:   John Lester Barstow to Laura

            Creator:  Barstow, John Lester, 1832-1913

            Date:  1864-05-19

            Resource type:   correspondence

            Topics include increasing numbers of sickly soldiers in camp, conditions of the hospital seized by Barstow for the injured, many wounded also homesick, projections for future marching orders.

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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:  1862-11-15

                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:  1864-03-29

                  Resource type:   correspondence

                  A down beat letter that includes the sickness of his children, reference to a newspaper article Rutherford wrote about an officer, rainy weather making him feel homesick and the death of Major Bartlett.

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                    Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                    Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                    Date:  1864-04-14

                    Resource type:   correspondence

                    Expresses concern about Hannah's health, the political scandal over General Butler not searching baggage of Mrs. (Martha) Todd White [Mary Todd Lincoln's half sister], not seeking higher military pay, receiving sugar from home, prediction about Lincoln and the future election, asking his daughter, Helen, to not attend school but help teach her younger siblings to read and write.

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                      Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                      Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                      Date:  1864-04-19

                      Resource type:   correspondence

                      Topics include additional sending more pay home to Hannah, an imminent march, enduring low spirits, sending a photograph of Lt. Tabor, instructions on where to send letters, of the sudden death of a fellow soldier's horse, and other stories of soldiers in the war.

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                        Title:   Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

                        Creator:  Rutherford, Joseph Chase, 1818-1902

                        Date:  1864-09-09

                        Resource type:   correspondence

                        Rutherford reflects on his deep desires to be home with family, his health improves but not yet resumed duties, expresses his feelings of the war going on, of those at home in comfort not experiencing the hardships of the soldier, makes a reference to the Copperheads in political rhetoric, writes of his mare, gives a description of his tent as living quarters with a drawing, and a requests for new glasses as his eyesight is getting bad.

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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 Spafford to Homer White

                            Creator:  Spafford, Joseph, 1837-1866

                            Date:  1862-02-07

                            Resource type:   correspondence

                            Spafford writes to his friend Homer on topics including Typhoid Fever in the Regiment, friendship, camp life, Hancock’s Brigade [Winfield Scott Hancock], and answering his friend’s questions about joining the Regiment and fear of dying.

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                              Title:   Joseph Spafford to Mary Jane Spafford

                              Creator:  Spafford, Joseph, 1837-1866

                              Date:  1862-01-06

                              Resource type:   correspondence

                              Written to his sister from his camp in Virginia, topics include inquiring after news from home, a possible visit by his father, cold weather, boxes of bedding sent by the towns of Weathersfield and Windham, and sending hats home so folks can see them.

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                                Title:   Letter to Rufus and Sebra Towle

                                Creator:  Towle, Ransom W., d. 1864

                                Date:  1861-12-29

                                Resource type:   correspondence

                                December 29, 1861. Topics include the health of the regiment in the cold weather (rheumatism, boils, homesickness), camp inspection, lack of presence of Chaplain except at religious services, and the prospect of battle.

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                                  Title:   Lyman S. Williams to Caroline Williams

                                  Creator:  Williams, Lyman S., 1839-1905

                                  Date:  1861-11-16

                                  Resource type:   correspondence

                                  Topics include the comforts of camp life.

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                                    Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                                    Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                                    Date:  1861-06-16

                                    Resource type:   correspondence

                                    Topics include: gratitude among the men for gifts of food (incl. maple sugar) and other "luxuries"; Major Worthen's scouting expedition, which led to a small skirmish and some casualties among some St. Albans and Swanton soldiers; press inaccuracies; life at camp; how he misses his books and reading; other domestic matters.

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                                      Title:   Valentine G. Barney to Maria Barney

                                      Creator:  Barney, Valentine G., 1834-1889

                                      Date:  1862-11-11

                                      Resource type:   correspondence

                                      Topics include the weather in Chicago, the desire to return home, and the improvement in Barney’s health.

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                                        Title:   Valentine G. Barney to Maria Barney

                                        Creator:  Barney, Valentine G., 1834-1889

                                        Date:  1863-01-01

                                        Resource type:   correspondence

                                        Writing from Camp Douglas in Chicago, Ill. Barney reflects on and hopes for an end to the war, his loneliness, longing to be with his family, of money he owed being paid on J. P. Jewetts books, inquiring of family, of receiving letters from his children and requesting photographs of them so he can get them "painted and framed".

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                                          Title:   Valentine G. Barney to Maria Barney

                                          Creator:  Barney, Valentine G., 1834-1889

                                          Date:  1863-02-15

                                          Resource type:   correspondence

                                          Topics include his desire to return home to play with his children, his worry about hearing that the family home was nearly lost in a fire, and how visiting with acquaintances helps him keep from being homesick.

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                                            Title:   Wheelock G. Veazey to Julia A. Veazey

                                            Creator:  Veazey, Wheelock G., 1835-1898

                                            Date:  1861-08-25

                                            Resource type:   correspondence

                                            Topics include Wheelock G. Veazey being in command of the Regiment for about a week, scouting Virginia, and General Smith making recommendations for Lt. Col. Hyde to be promoted to Col. and Wheelock G. Veazey to be promoted to Lt. Col.

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                                              Title:   Wheelock G. Veazey to Julia A. Veazey

                                              Creator:  Veazey, Wheelock G., 1835-1898

                                              Date:  [1861]-10-02

                                              Resource type:   correspondence

                                              Topics include Wheelock G. Veazey telling his wife Julia A. Veazey how much he loves and misses her.

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                                                Title:   Wheelock G. Veazey to Julia A. Veazey

                                                Creator:  Veazey, Wheelock G., 1835-1898

                                                Date:  1861-10-[06]

                                                Resource type:   correspondence

                                                Topics include Wheelock G. Veazey telling his wife Julia A. Veazey how much he loves and misses her.

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                                                  Title:   Wheelock G. Veazey to Julia A. Veazey

                                                  Creator:  Veazey, Wheelock G., 1835-1898

                                                  Date:  [1861]-10-17

                                                  Resource type:   correspondence

                                                  Topics include Wheelock G. Veazey telling his wife Julia A. Veazey how much he loves and misses her.

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