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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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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:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

    Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

    Date:  1861-06-25

    Resource type:   correspondence

    Topics include monotony of camp life, the warm weather, and rumors around camp that an attack is imminent. Farnham assures wife that rebels would need a large army to attack them so close to Fort Monroe.

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      Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

      Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

      Date:  1861-06-27

      Resource type:   correspondence

      Topics include an account of the sick, the return of Parker of the Woodstock Company from enemy prison, and asking Mrs. Farnham to save newspapers.

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        Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

        Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

        Date:  1861-07-04

        Resource type:   correspondence

        Topics include further description of the 4th of July.

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          Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

          Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

          Date:  1861-07-05

          Resource type:   correspondence

          Topics include an encounter between the Zouaves and Rebels, flap-jacks and doughnuts in camp, an African-American prisoner by the name of Joe Wilson, the probability of not engaging in a fight, and the bugs and mosquitoes at camp.

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            Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

            Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

            Date:  1861-07-17

            Resource type:   correspondence

            Writes from Camp Butler, Fort Monroe, Va. of camp life including flea bites, of family matters, his sister Laura's earache, wife Mary's health, gives a detailed description of the soldiers experience going out at night with five other companies (Northfield of his regiment and four companies of the Scott Life Guard of New York 4th) under the command of Lt. Col. McGregor.

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              Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

              Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

              Date:  1861-07-19

              Resource type:   correspondence

              July 19, 1861. Writes from Camp Butler, Newport News, Va. of family matters, fleas and mosquitoes at camp, salt baths, mentions Lt. Peckett, Maj. Worthen, Adj of NY 4th Henricus, of riding out into the country to call on two houses, observations about the owners' slaves.

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                Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                Date:  1861-07-21

                Resource type:   correspondence

                July 21, 1861. Topics include Roswell urging his wife Mary to get a nurse to take care of her, of Laura's ear problem may be getting better, of his pleasure to hear of his nomination.

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                  Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                  Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                  Date:  1861-07-26

                  Resource type:   correspondence

                  July 26, 1861. Writes from Camp Butler in Newport News, Va. of contraband (seven children), of sending 12 Negroes (7 of them children) to the Fort, of a fight and march to Yorktown and the health of his wife Mary.

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                    Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                    Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                    Date:  1861-07-29

                    Resource type:   correspondence

                    July 29, 1861. Topics include a flag of truce coming into the fort in order to collect baggage of Rebels Mr. Shurtliff (an artist) and Captain Jenkins who were taken prisoner, mentions the names of several ships (Dale, Monticello, Penguin, Hope).

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                      Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                      Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                      Date:  1861-06-13

                      Resource type:   correspondence

                      Topics include the battle the previous Monday and the death of George Lougee from Vershire, Vermont. Farnham concerned that some of his letters may be misinterpreted and printed (presumably in the local press). Mentions Col. Phelps's anxiety, imminent court-martial of Mass. general, and some of the hardships of the campaign.

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                        Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                        Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                        Date:  1861-06-19

                        Resource type:   correspondence

                        Topics include his concern about anxiety at home after the Battle of Big Bethel; Farnham's desire to save his letters; domestic financial affairs; names of men in the hospital, and one death (Ph. Lougee); Maj. Worthen has a servant, a young black boy named Pompey Wind.

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                          Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                          Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                          Date:  1861-07-03

                          Resource type:   correspondence

                          Topics include the celebration of the 4th of July and the health of Farnham and his comrades..

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                            Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                            Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                            Date:  1861-07-10

                            Resource type:   correspondence

                            Topics include encounter between Hawkins Regiment and a company of Rebels, Roswell's desire to "go out whenthe company goes," despite his wife's complaining. Also the weather, camp life, Roswell's eagerness to return home, and an article in the Telegraph titled "Pipes, Tobacco, and Whiskey" are discussed.

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                              Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                              Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                              Date:  1861-07-13

                              Resource type:   correspondence

                              Topics include Roswell inviting his wife to visit him, the predicted length of the war, and a elaborate dinner.

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                                Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                                Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                                Date:  1861-07-21

                                Resource type:   correspondence

                                July 21, 1861. Topics include Farnham's anticipation to return home to his wife Mary, his urging again that Mary get someone to stay with her, of minor illnesses among the men and the politics of the company mentioning Peckett, Andross and Stearns.

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                                  Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                                  Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                                  Date:  1861-07-23

                                  Resource type:   correspondence

                                  July 23, 1861. Topics include disastrous news from Manassas Junction that will delay the departure for home, death of a soldier named Whitney from Woodstock who left the troops with Lt. Becker but without being given leave by the Colonel, and terrible rain storms.

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                                    Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                                    Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                                    Date:  1861-08-02

                                    Resource type:   correspondence

                                    August 2, 1861. Topics include Roswell telling his wife of the delay for the departure home, another description of Fort Monroe and Hygeia Hotel on Old Point Comfort similar to one written in the July 31 letter, of the incident of shooting of a drunken soldier, of the drunken condition of the 1st N Y regiment.

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                                      Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                                      Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                                      Date:  1861-08-03

                                      Resource type:   correspondence

                                      Topics include Roswell informing his wife that the Regiment will be departing for home on Monday, August 5th, 1861, of searching for, finding and smashing illegal casks of liquor, of a woman and two children being returned to the enemy under a flag of truce.

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                                        Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                                        Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                                        Date:  1861-08-10

                                        Resource type:   correspondence

                                        Topics include the journey home and awaiting the paymaster before finally going home, concerns for his wife's health, the men refusing to drill or do any other military duty. Writes from Camp Phelps, Brattleboro.

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                                          Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                                          Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                                          Date:  1861-08-15

                                          Resource type:   correspondence

                                          Topics include the delay of setting out for home and paying out the men in the Regiment, $58.000 in gold having arrived by express,his health remain good, concerns for his wife's health, mentions Col. Phelps now having been promoted to Gen.

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                                            Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                                            Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                                            Date:  1862-10-21

                                            Resource type:   correspondence

                                            Topics include Roswell Farnham’s foot injury.

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                                              Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                                              Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                                              Date:  1862-10-23

                                              Resource type:   correspondence

                                              Topics include the improvement of Roswell Farnham’s foot injury, the cold weather at camp, and the number of regiments joining the camp.

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                                                Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                                                Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                                                Date:  1862-11-20

                                                Resource type:   correspondence

                                                Farnham writes from Camp Vermont about preparations for his wife, Mary's visit to camp, about how comfortable their dwelling will be, how he will meet up with her once she arrives, reference to a new sutler, and mentions other wives coming to visit.

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                                                  Title:   Roswell Farnham to [Mary Farnham]

                                                  Creator:  Farnham, Roswell, 1827-1903

                                                  Date:  1862-10-17

                                                  Resource type:   correspondence

                                                  Topics include performing several hours of battalion drills and reviews, rumors that the regiment will remain in Washington through the winter, and inquiries about the people at home.

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