Civil War Letters, Diaries, Manuscripts
A Brief Guide to Our Collections
About this list: This
list is made available for researchers who want to quickly browse
manuscripts relating to the Civil War. For in-depth information about
these and all manuscript holdings, please consult the VMI Archives Catalog . The catalog contains detailed descriptive records and links to online
access when available, and is the best tool for searching our manuscripts holdings. Collections which are available online are
designated in this list with Online Access
For other sections of the Brief Guide Series see: Letters, Diaries, & Manuscripts Home
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- 7th Virginia Cavalry Quartermaster documents. (MS 0399) Online Access
Requisitions and receipts (21 items, 1861-1862) issued by Capt. William Miller, Assistant Quartermaster serving on Col. Turner Ashby's staff. Many bear Ashby's signature.
- Adams, Richard H., Jr., papers. (MS 0358) Online Access
Biographical note: Richard H. Adams, Jr. from Marengo County, Alabama; served with 5th Alabama Infantry Regiment and in Engineer Corps on General Wheeler's staff, captured near Nashville; prisoner of war Sept. 1863-June 1865, one of "immortal 600". Descriptive note: Civil War papers (ca. 80 items), including prison correspondence.
- Allen, Julia Pendleton. Letter. Online Access
A Confederate officer's wife in Winchester, Virginia, February 1862.
- Atwill, Samuel F., papers. (MS 0061) Online Access
Biographical note: Member of the Class of 1866; wounded at Battle of New Market on May 15, 1864 and died as a result of wound on July 20, 1864. Descriptive note: Papers consist of two letters (1862) written by Cadet Atwill to his parents, relating anecdotes about life at VMI; one letter (July 1864) from Supt. Francis H. Smith notifying family of Atwill's death; fragment of Atwill's cadet account book.
- Bagnall, John S., papers. (MS 0219) Online Access
Misc. papers of John Bagnall, Class of 1865 & New Market cadet. Included are letters from Eliza C. ("Mother") Crim, of New Market fame, dated 1921; a VMI grade report (1862); two receipts for payment of tuition & diploma; and an envelope containing 2 calling cards.
- Baker, I. Norval, Civil War Memoirs. (MS #0357). Online Access
Private, Company F, 18th Virginia Cavalry Regiment; memoirs describing Baker's Civil War experiences July 1863-April 1865; topics include camp life, hardships, battles (Gettysburg, Cedar Creek), effects of war in Shenandoah Valley. Also includes Company F roster.
- Beall, Edward T., diary. (MS 0355) Online Access
Diary of 16 year old soldier Edward T. Beall, Private, 62nd Virginia Infantry, covering period April-October 1863.
- Bentley, William W., letter (MS 0117) . Online Access
VMI Class of 1860; Lt. Col., 24th Virginia Infantry Regiment, CSA. Letter from Lt. Col. Bentley to his mother dated June 13, 1862, from "camp near Richmond." Discusses his feelings about war; comfort given by his belief in God; life in camp.
- Berkeley, Edmund. Letter. (MS 0154) Online Access
Letter from Cadet Berkeley (VMI Class of 1867 & New Market cadet) to his mother, dated 26 November 1863. Berkeley has been informed of his sister's death and offers consolation to his mother. He also gives VMI news and complains about the food (early reference to term "growley").
- Black, William J., Diary. (MS 0015) Online Access
One volume diary of Confederate soldier William J. Black (b. 1845 d. 1935; VMI Class of 1867). Diary entries date from October 1864 - January 1865, written while Black was serving in Captain John J. Shoemaker's Battery, Stuart's Horse Artillery. Also VMI cadet account book.
- Borders, John. Papers. (MS 0369) Online Access
4 documents granting a presidential pardon to John Borders of Calhoun, Co., Alabama, 1865-1866.
- Botts, Lawson. Papers. (MS 0064) Online Access
Miscellaneous Civil War Papers (1861-1862) of Lawson Botts (b.1825 Fredericksburg, VA; VMI Class of 1844; lawyer; Col., 2nd Virginia Infantry Regiment; died 1862 as a result of wound received at 2nd Manassas). Include letter of commission; promotion order; order to assume duties of Provost Marshall in Winchester, VA; letter to Capt. O'Brien complaining about shortage of rations, etc; furlough request; receipt.
- Boyd, Robert A., Diary. (MS 0092) Online Access
VMI Class of 1863; 1st Sergeant, Co. D. , 1st Regiment, Confederate States Engineers. One volume notebook, ca. 45 pages, containing miscellaneous personal notes (Dec 1864- April 1865) and brief diary entries (April 3-13, 1865). Diary portion covers activities of the 1st Engineers Regiment during the last few days of the war; mentions surrender at Appomattox and includes pencil sketch of surrender site. Notes concern supplies, furloughs and desertions, guard rosters.
- Boykin, Francis M., papers. (MS 0232). Online Access
Misc. Civil War papers of Francis Boykin (VMI Class of 1856 & 31st Virginia Infantry), CSA. Includes 2 commissions, orders, letter signed by Robert E. Lee, letter from Gov. John Letcher. All documents are dated 1861.
- Breckinridge, John C., misc. documents (MS 00370) Online Access
John C. Breckinridge, Major General, Confederate States Army; Confederate Secretary of War; b. 1821 d. 1875. Six miscellaneous documents (1861-1873), labeled "contents of J.C. Breckinridge's purse." Items include receipts; list of names with addresses.
- Brisbine, Napoleon C., letters. (MS 0391) Online Access
Two letters written by Union Army physician N. B. Brisbine at Winchester, Virginia, dated September 16 and 24, 1864. Brisbine was a Surgeon serving with the 2nd Ohio Cavalry Regiment; this unit was engaged in the fighting at Winchester in August 1864, serving as a rear guard while the rest of the army retreated toward Harper's Ferry.
- Brooke, Samuel S., papers. (MS 0221) Online Access
Brooke was a member of the Class of 1861 and & served with the 47th Virginia Infantry Regiment. Correspondence, 1862-1864, to & from family members. Includes references to civilian wartime life in Fredericksburg, VA as well as information about the 47th VA.
- Boykin, Francis M., papers. (MS 0282) Online Access
Papers (bulk dated 1860-1865) of correspondence, photographs, and miscellaneous documents of R. Henry Campbell and members of the Varner family of Lexington, Rockbridge County, Virginia. Includes Civil War letters of soldiers R. Henry Campbell (1861 April -July) and Charles V. Varner (1864, 1865). The letters were written while they were serving with the Rockbridge Rifles. Significant topics in the Campbell letters include the unit's stay at Harper's Ferry and Martinsburg, and the 1st Battle of Manassas (1st Bull Run). Also includes local broadside concerning occupation of Lexington by U. S. forces, July 1865.
- Carpenter, Joseph H., papers. (MS 0333) Online Access (Civil War items)
Virginia Military Institute, Class of 1856; Captain, Co. A, 27th Virginia Infantry Regiment (later converted to artillery company known as Carpenter's Battery); wounded at Cedar Mountain, 1862; died from effects of the wound, February 5, 1863. Cadet notebook; and Civil War papers (6 items) including letter of June 16, 1862 describing fighting near Port Republic.
- Chaffin, Richard B., receipts. (MS 0095)
Biographical note: Richard Booker Chaffin, b. 1844 Amelia Co., Virginia; non graduate, VMI Class of 1866; Lt., CSA Cavalry; realtor, Richmond, VA; d. 1902, Richmond. Descriptive note: Miscellaneous receipts (20 items) for Chaffin's expenses at VMI, and for various family expenses. Dated Jan-Dec 1863.
- Civil War claims documents. (MS 0241)
In 1864, Henry duPont, then an artillery captain for the Union Army, shelled VMI on orders of Union Gen. David Hunter. Years later, as a U.S. senator, duPont introduced a bill to compensate VMI for the destruction. The bill, signed into law in 1914 by President Woodrow Wilson, awarded VMI $100,000, funding the construction of Jackson Memorial Hall, known on the VMI Post as “JM Hall.” This collection contains 3 documents concerning relating to the passage of the bill (Senate bill 544).
- Clarke, John J., Papers. (MS 0112) Online Access
Papers (12 items), 1861-1865, of John J. Clarke, Colonel, Confederate States Corps of Engineers; Chief Engineer, Dept. of South Carolina, Georgia and Florida. Documents include commissions, military orders; correspondence and dispatches concerning activities in and around Charleston, South Carolina during the period 1864-1865.
- Cocke, Cary C., letters. (MS 0189) Biographical note: Cary Charles Cocke, b. 1814; physician; d. 1888. John Hartwell Cocke b. 1847, Bremo Bluff, VA; VMI Class of 1868; farmer; d. 1920. Descriptive note: Three letters, 1863-1864, written by Dr. Cary C. Cocke to Fayette Jones and Harrison B. Tomlin. Topics include mutual friends (Josh Jones family) who were forced to leave their home in Norfolk; and other news of wartime civilian life. The letter of December 22, 1864 contains references to Cocke's son John, a VMI cadet.
- Coleman, Clayton G., Papers. (MS 0021) Online Access
Coleman (VMI Class of 1859) served during the Civil War with the 23rd Virginia Infantry and later as a physician in the Confederate Medical Dept. The collection contains three letters written to his sister during the war. Letter of 9/19/1862, from Winchester, Virginia, discusses Battle of Antietam and caring for wounded; 11/4/1862, from Winchester, discusses hospitals and care of wounded; other war activities; 2/25/1863 is largely personal, discussing his mother's death. The collection also includes an autograph album, containing the signatures of his VMI classmates.
- Comer Family letter. (MS 0410)
One letter from Mrs. Comer to her husband, dated 1865 January 25 from Winchester, Virginia. It is addressed to "A. Comer, Asst. Surgeon;" no other biographical information was available at the time the letter was cataloged. The letter contains personal and family news, including mention of a ball given by Gen. Chapman's staff, a wedding, and a sleigh ride.
- Confederate Bond collection. (MS 0371)
Collection of bonds (9 items; $1000, $500, $100 denominations) issued by the Confederate States of America. Coupons attached.
- Craun, Samuel H., papers. (MS 0372) Online Access
Samuel H. Craun, b. 1821, enlisted 12th Virginia Cavalry Regiment April 1862; postwar residence Rockingham Co., Virginia. Papers consist of 11 miscellaneous documents, 1862-1863, from Craun's military service. Included are receipts; orders regarding foraging, picking up prisoners; ordnance list for Co. H.
- Crowther, Joseph W., Diary. (MS 0330) Diary of Union soldier Joseph W. Crowther, who served during the Civil War with Company H., 128th New York Infantry Regiment; entries begin November 9 , 1864 and end July 23, 1865 when regiment is disbanded. Crowther describes camp life; foraging; skirmishes; winter quarters in Winchester, Virginia; transport via steamship to Fort Monroe, Virginia and Savannah, Georgia; soldiers receiving news of the assassination of President Lincoln; description of soldiers'return to New York at end of war. Locations mentioned or described include Kernstown, Front Royal, Winchester, Martinsburg, Harper's Ferry, Baltimore, Savannah, and Goldsboro. See the website maintained by Bill Cork, great-great grandson of Joseph Crowther, for a transcription of the original diary and other information about the family.
- Darden, James D., Papers. (MS 0120)
Miscellaneous Civil War papers of James Darden (VMI Class of 1867), a New Market Cadet who later joined the CSA. 5 items (1865); 3 page biographical sketch (typescript), ca. 1910.
- Davis, Thomas B., papers. (MS 0026). Collection consists of 2 items. 1. Letter (March 22, 1863) from Cadet Davis to his sister, Mrs. Camillus Christian; in addition to general news about weather and family, contains early use of the term "rat" to describe VMI 4th classmen and mentions that legislature is investigating hazing. 2. VMI cadet account book, 1862-1864; contains entries for VMI expenses. Davis attended VMI 1862-1864 (Class of 1866); served as 2nd Lieut., Company D, 2nd Virginia Cavalry; died in prison from effects of battle wound.
- Dedrick, Henry H., papers. (MS 0332). Online Access
Biographical Note: Confederate soldier. Henry H. Dedrick, born Rockingham Co., Virginia, 1836?; Private, Co. B., 52nd Virginia Infantry Regiment, CSA; after war was farmer in Augusta County; died Sherando, Augusta Co., November 10, 1921. Collection Description: Correspondence (32 items), 1861-1865. Bulk consists of letters to and from his wife, Mary E.A. Dedrick, written while he was serving in the army. Subjects include camp life, regimental activities and personal news, hardships endured by civilians.
- Derby, Charles H., Papers. (MS 0030) Online Access (selected items)
Correspondence and other papers (ca. 60 items) of Charles A. Derby (b. 1828 d. 1862).VMI Class of 1848. Joined 44th Alabama Infantry Regiment in 1862; killed September 17, 1862 at Battle of Antietam (Md.) Bulk consists of Derby family correspondence (42 letters), including 25 letters written by Charles Derby. Six letters were written from VMI (1846-1847); others date from his career as a teacher & clergyman in Alabama and from his CSA service.
- Drake, James M., letter. (MS 0402)
Civil War letter written by Union soldier James M. Drake of Sharon, Mass., who served with the 33rd Massachusetts Infantry, (Company M & later K). Drake, a lawyer in civilian life, was a 1st Sergeant in his Company and was killed October 29, 1863 at Raccoon Ridge, Tennessee. The letter, addressed to his father, is dated August 26, 1862 and was written from Alexandria, Virginia, where the Regiment was encamped. Drake presents his views on slavery, discusses the beauty of the city, mentions inaccuracy of northern war news ("Don't you believe all your Northern papers say, the Union is in great danger of a complete defeat."), and discusses Union officers view of Stonewall Jackson ("Most of our officers have a great fear of Jackson.").
- Dunlap Family letters. (MS 0373) Online Access
Two letters, 1864, regarding members of the Dunlap family of Jennings Gap, Augusta Co., Virginia. May 20th, 1864, Confederate soldier Robert B. Dunlap to his mother Margaret Dunlap, written from camp near Spotsylvania Courthouse; describes aftermath of battle, seeing battlefield covered with dead and wounded. July 13, 1864, Adam Dunlap, a Union loyalist, to his brother Robert, from Warnsburg, Missouri; discusses murder of their brother Jim (also a Union loyalist) by a member of his own unit; encourages Robert to "change your way of thinking."
- Early, Jubal A., papers. (MS 0398)
Miscellaneous papers (8 items), primarily post-Civil War, of Confederate General Jubal A. Early. Included is a dispatch to Maj. Hawks dated January 8, 1864, in which Imboden informs him "I shall not move to the lower valley- there is nothing to be gained by it."
- Edgar, George M., letters. (MS 0094)
George Mathews Edgar, b. 1837, d. 1913, VMI Class of 1856. Letter to Edgar, dated May 17, 1864, commends him for the assistance rendered by his battalion at the Battle of New Market on May 15. Letter from Edgar (1885) written while he was President of the Arkansas Industrial University, in which he replies to James E. Blenchingly (VMI Class of 1852) application for a job.
- Emory, William H., papers. (MS 0298)
Misc. Civil War papers of Union General William H. Emory (b. 1811 d. 1887), USMA Class of 1831. The collection contains: "Rebellion Record of Brevet Major General W.H. Emory," 1872, 50 holograph pages; Reports, holograph (2 vols.) of Union Forces during the Red River Campaign, 1864 (13th, 16th, 17th, 19th Army Corps); Reports, holograph (1 vol.) of Union Forces during the Shenandoah Valley Campaign, 1864. 19th Army Corps.
- Ervine, John H., letter. (MS 0331). Online Access
Letter , June 18, 1861, from Confederate soldier John H. Ervine, to his wife Ellen. Ervine was serving with Co. I, 1st Virginia Cavalry.
- Ewell, Richard S., miscellaneous papers. (MS 0395)
Miscellaneous papers (3 items) of Richard S. Ewell. Includes a letter written while he was a cadet at West Point (June 17, 1838) to Benjamin S. Ewell of York, PA; and 2 Civil War dispatches (1862 and 1864). The collection also contains a map of the Cedar Mountain battlefield drawn by Gen. Ewell.
- Ford, James W. A., letter (MS 0271)
One letter (September 20, 1863) from James W. A. Ford of Lewisburg WV to his cousin Caroline. He discusses the death from the effects of childbirth of his sister Lizzie Burdette. He also mentions that he has raised a company of cavalry.
- Fulkerson Family papers. (MS 0363) Online Access
Fulkerson family papers, 1847-1925. Includes Civil War correspondence of Samuel V. Fulkerson (VMI Board of Visitors; Col. 37th Virginia Infantry Regiment) and Abram Fulkerson, (VMI Class of 1857, Col. 63rd Tennessee Infantry, Immortal 600). Samuel was killed in 1862 at Gaines' Mill; papers include Stonewall Jackson ALS (Sept 2, 1862) to Mr. F.M. Fulkerson, in which he praises Samuel's abilities and laments his death.
- Galt, William. Notebook. (MS 0362) Online Access
Poetry notebook ,1862, compiled by Cadet William Galt, VMI Class of 1864. Contains some original cadet poetry as well as popular wartime verses (Bonnie Blue Flag; Oh Weep not Mother). Two pieces about death of Stonewall Jackson. Galt joined the 52nd Virginia Infantry and was mortally wounded at Winchester in Sept. 1864.
- Garibaldi, John. Papers. (MS 00284). Online Access
Correspondence, 1862-1864, of Sgt. John Garibaldi, 27th Virginia Infantry Regiment.
- Garland, Samuel. Commission Document. (MS 0118) Online Access
Brig. Gen. CSA; killed in battle at South Mountain, 14 September 1862. Descriptive note: Commission document, dated May 8, 1861, appointing Samuel Garland, Jr. Colonel in the Virginia Volunteer Forces. Signed by Governor John Letcher.
- Gatewood, Andrew C. L., Papers. (MS 0068) Online Access
Papers of wartime cadet (Class of 1864) and CSA soldier, 11th Virginia Cavalry Regiment. Includes 28 letters, 1860-1864, written during cadetship and his subsequent military service.
- Gibbons, Alfred R., Letter (MS 0119) Online Access
Wartime cadet (Class of 1867) describes the Corps being sent on a march to defend against Union troop movements, December 1863.
- Goodman, George A., Papers. (MS 0044) Misc. papers (1848-1865) of George A. Goodman (b.1828 d. 1884), VMI Class of 1852, Lt. Col., 13th Virginia Infantry Regiment. 11 items, including Goodman's VMI Diploma and Cadet Dialectic Society certificates; letters of recommendation (1859) from Francis H. Smith and Thomas H. Williamson; misc. Civil War documents including commissions, oaths of allegiance, and prison parole.
- Haigh, Charles T., notebook. (MS 0016). Online Access
One vol. notebook of Cadet Haigh (b, 1845 d, 1864), VMI Class of 1866. Contains cadet poetry; diary entries, March -May 1863, including references to Stonewall Jackson's wounding, death and funeral.
- Hanna, John F., diary. (MS 0317). Online Access
Diary of John F. Hanna, Class of 1864 & New Market Cadet. Entries begin April 17, 1864 and end May 9, 1864; contain comments about VMI activities, as well as personal concerns. The diary was acquired by a Union soldier, presumably Septimus Knight of the 15th Pennsylvania Cavalry. The notebook was used by Knight as a diary; entries date from August 1862 (apparently copied from an earlier diary or notes) through June 1868. Most entries relate the movements and activities of the 15th Pennsylvania Cavalry.
- Harden, James A., Papers. (MS 0476) Online Access
Class of 1864MS; Wartime letters, 1861-1864; was with 23rd Virginia Battalion before being captured at the third battle of Winchester. He was held at Ft. Delaware until the end of the war.
- Hardy, William T., collection. (MS 0084).
b. 1834, Norfolk, Virginia; VMI Class of 1855; during Civil War was Captain, Quartermaster, Confederate States Army; farmer; d. 1911. Descriptive note: The collection consists of drawing exercises (bound notebook and unbound drawings) completed while Hardy (b. 1834 d. 1911) was a VMI cadet; and one wartime letter (May 12, 1864) to his wife, in which he briefly discusses battle at Spotsylvania Court House.
- Harman, Michael G., papers. (MS 0397) Online Access
Miscellaneous Civil War letters (6 items; July-October 1861) of Lt. Col. Michael G. Harman, written from Headquarters, Staunton, Virginia, where Harman was Quartermaster. The letters concern supplies and transportation.
- Harris, Sutton I., letter. (MS 0394) Online Access
One letter, dated September 12, 1861, from Confederate soldier Sutton J. Harris of the 7th Virginia Cavalry, to "my dearest Lizzie." The letter was written from camp at Duffield's Station, Jefferson County, [West] Virginia and contains complaints about food and camp hardships; mentions being surrounded by federal troops; personal news; mentions Col. Turner Ashby.
- Harris, Willis O., letter. (MS 0478)
One letter from New Market Cadet Willis O. Harris (Class of 1867), written from VMI on April 17th, 1864. Although primarily containing comments on family news, Harris does mention the uncertainty of whether or not the Corps will be called into the Army and expresses his wish to "have the credit of contributing to the common cause before peace is declared."
- Hawkins, W. W., letter. (MS 0404)
Civil War letter written by Union soldier W. W. Hawkins to his father. The letter is dated November 20, 1862 from "Camp at Fairmount, Near Fredericksburg, VA." The letter contains comments about military life (marching, lack of rations, talking with Confederate soldiers encamped across the river, cavalry foraging for food). Hawkins's unit and other biographical details are not known.
- Hempstead, Junius, letter. (MS 0172) Online Access
One letter, 1865 September, from Junius Hempstead (VMI Class of 1864; Capt., 25th Virginia Infantry) in which he defends the position taken by the South during the war & his own service in the CSA. One poem, "Ode to the 4th Classmen of 1861 who never heard Auld Lang Syne."
- Henkel Family letters. (MS # 0374) Online Access
Four wartime letters concerning Henkel and Kagey families of New Market, Virginia; 2 documents signed by Solon P.C. Henkel, M.D. for reimbursement for goods taken from his farm by Union soldiers and for medical supplies used while he cared for Union soldiers at the Federal hospital in New Market.
- Hickman, Joseph. Document (MS 0376) Online Access
Document, (April 22, ca. 1862), from Headquarters, Valley District; "Pass J. G. Hickman through the pickets to Harrisonburg, VA."
- Holliday, Benjamin T, Parole Document/Oath of Allegiance. (MS 0233) Online Access
Document releasing Holliday from prison at Point Lookout, Maryland, June 1865.
- Holman, William H. Civil War documents (MS 0428)
The collection consists of two documents from the Civil War career of Captain William H. Holman, of Holman's Company, Virginia Light Artillery, CSA (later the Fluvanna Artillery, No.1). Included are a commission document (June 28, 1861), appointing him Captain in the 2nd Artillery Regiment; and a military order (September 15, 1861) requiring Holman to report to Brig. General Early.
- Hubard, William J., notebook. (MS 0014)
One vol. notebook of New Market cadet Hubard (b. 1845 d. 1917), VMI Class of 1865. Contains poetry composed by cadets, including "Soliloquy of a Rat," The Faculty," and other poems about cadet life. Two diary entries (Nov 1862; June 1863); autographs; misc. mementos.
- Humphreys, J. O., Diary. (Located in VMI Order Book). Online Access
An account of the Shenandoah Valley Campaign by a Private serving with the 1st Independent Battery Ohio Artillery; covers the period April-July, 1864. The diary was written in a VMI Order Book that was carried off by Union soldiers during Hunter's Raid, June 1864, and returned to VMI over 100 years later.
- Hurley, J. R., papers. (MS #190) Online Access
12 letters, 1862-1863, from Confederate soldier J.R. Hurley (Private, Co. "A", 39th Alabama Infantry Regiment) to his family. Written from camps in Mississippi and Tennessee. References to life in camp; personal news.
- Imboden, John D., miscellaneous papers. (MS 0396)
Miscellaneous papers (1862-1891, 5 items) of Confederate General John D. Imboden. One document dates from the Civil War and concerns the subpoena of witnesses for the trial of a man accused of collaborating with the enemy; the other documents are dated post-war and pertain to various personal and business matters.
- Jackson, Stonewall. Papers. (MS 0102). Online Access
Personal Papers, 1844-1863, of Confederate General Thomas J. Jackson. Most date from before the Civil War, although some Civil War items are included.
- James, John G., Papers (MS 0319)
John Garland James, b. 1844, Fluvanna Co., VA; VMI Class of 1866 and New Market cadet; educator; d. 1930, Dallas TX. Descriptive note: The papers consist of 16 letters and one postcard written by John G. James to his friend Samuel Y. Ferguson of Wichita Falls, Texas. Of special interest is the letter of April 17. 1927, in which James describes his memories of witnessing the VMI Corps of Cadets arrival in Richmond, April 1861, under the command of Thomas J. (Stonewall) Jackson. This same letter contains a brief recollection of James' participation in Jackson's funeral.
- Jameson, James H., letters. (MS 0252) Online Access
2 letters, with original envelopes, written by James H. Jameson (VMI Class of 1842) to his daughter from Point Lookout Prison, Maryland. Dated August 8 & 28, 1864. Discusses his failing health; requests money. Jameson served with the 11th Virginia Infantry Regiment.
- Johnson Family Papers. (MS 0341). Online Access
Family letters (26 items, 1862-1865) written by Rockbridge County resident Mortimer H. Johnson and his son Porter Johnson (New Market Cadet/Class of 1867).
- Johnson, Francis S., letter of recommendation. (MS 0216)
One letter from Thomas B. Robinson (Class of 1856/Faculty) recommending Cadet Johnson (Class of 1867 & New Market cadet) for service in the Confederate Army. Dated march 20, 1865.
- Jordan, Walter. Letter. (MS 0403).
Civil War letter, dated November 22, 1863, from Union soldier Walter Jordan to "Friend Croswell." Jordan was writing from "camp near Brandy Station." The letter contains mostly personal news and comments about his family; Jordan expresses frustration at indecision of officers and states that "I hope they will come at some plan so as to move on the enemy or else go into winter quarters and settle down until spring."
- Koontz, George W., Letter. (item in MS 0102) Online Access
Koontz served with the Danville Artillery (Rice's Battery). He discusses the Battle of Chancellorsville and death of Stonewall Jackson.
- Langhorne, J. Kent. Papers. (MS 0361). Online Access
Jacob Kent Langhorne (VMI Class of 1866) joined 2nd Virginia Cavalry, CSA; killed June 9, 1863, near Brandy Station, Virginia. Description: 16 letters from Jacob Kent Langhorne to his family. 11 letters, Sept 1862 - Jan 1863 were written from VMI; 5 letters written after he joined the second Virginia Cavalry.
- Langhorne, Maurice., Letter. (MS 0375) Online Access
Letter (June 19, 1861) from Maurice Langhorne (probably the grandfather of Maurice Langhorne, VMI Class of 1867/New Market cadet) of Lynchburg to Gov. John Letcher, requesting that William R. Musser be released from military duty in order to conduct essential war service in Lynchburg. Endorsed on the verso by several officers, including General Robert E. Lee.
- Lee, Robert E., miscellaneous family papers. (MS 0237)
Misc. Robert E. Lee and Mary Custis Lee documents. 9 items signed by R. E. Lee, including four holograph letters. 1 check payable to Mrs. Lee.
- Lee-Jackson Foundation manuscripts. (MS 0288). A group of miscellaneous manuscripts donated by the Lee-Jackson Foundation in conjunction with their gift of the Stonewall Jackson Papers. Includes documents bearing signatures of Civil War notables.
- Lightfoot, Charles E., letter. (MS 0448) Online Access
Letter, dated 1865 March 17, from HQ, Artillery Defenses, Richmond, Virginia. The letter was written by Confederate officer Lt. Col. Charles E. Lightfoot (VMI Class of 1854 )to Colonel Benjamin S. Ewell, brother and staff officer to General Richard S. Ewell. Lightfoot asks for a clarification of command responsibility for Richmond's artillery defenses, stating that the present command situation places him in conflict with Lt. Col. Carter M. Braxton. General Ewell's reply, via Col. Ewell, is on reverse.
- Lohr, Zirkle. Document. (MS 0377) Online Access
Receipt (October 6, 1863) from Confederate government for 15 bushels of corn; issued to Zirkle Lohr of Madison County, Virginia.
- Lunbeck, Joseph R., papers. (MS 0408)
Civil War papers of Union soldier Joseph Ross Lunbeck, who served first with Company B of the 26th Ohio Infantry Regiment (Fullerton Rifles) and later as a hospital steward. Lunbeck (b. Ross Co., Ohio 1837) was a miller living in Chillicothe Co., Ohio and was age 24 in 1862; his parents were Isaac Lunbeck and Agnes Truslow. Papers include a regimental roster, documents pertaining to his appointment as hospital steward, and requisitions.
- Mahone's Brigade Commissary Documents and misc. other (MS 0235)
The bulk of this collection consists of documents relating to commissary stores, provisions, and supplies handled by Major P. M. Slaughter, Brigade Commissary,
- Marlin, Sidney. Letter. (MS 00070) Online Access
Letter from Sidney Marlin, a Union soldier (unit unknown), to his wife. Dated June 14, 1864 from Lexington, Virginia, where Union forces were camped during "Hunter's Raid." Marlin describes the Institute; comments on the destruction of VMI and Governor Letcher's property.
- Marshall, F. Lewis. Letter. (MS 0165) Online Access
One letter (October 6, 1863) confirming and giving details of the death of James K. Marshall (VMI Class of 1860; Colonel, 52nd North Carolina Infantry), who was killed in battle at Gettysburg. The letter was written to James' parents by his cousin, F. Lewis Marshall.
- Martin, R. Emmett. Letter. (MS 0406) Online Access
Civil War letter from Confederate soldier R. Emmett Martin to his wife, dated 3 July 1862. Letter is headed "Battlefield" and discusses Battle of Malvern Hill (Seven Days' Battle, Peninsular Campaign). Martin writes to "inform you of my safety after the hard fought battle of the 1st inst," and discusses heavy casualties in his regiment.
- Massie, James W., Papers. (MS 0142)
Personal papers, 1855-1879, of James W. Massie, Class of 1849 and Professor of Math. Include incoming correspondence, misc. Civil War papers (primarily orders and commissions). Massie served with the 51st Virginia Infantry, CSA.
- Maury, Matthew Fontaine. Papers. (MS 0103). Online Access
Personal correspondence (1833-1873) of Matthew Fontaine Maury (b.1806 d. 1873), oceanographer, Confederate States Navy Commander, and educator. Letters (ca. 148 items) written by MFM to various members of his family.
- McCoy, Andrew J., letters. (MS 0393). Online Access
Civil War correspondence of Confederate soldier Andrew J. McCoy, consisting of 3 letters (1863 October 25; 1864 Jan 16 fragment; 1864 March 11) to his sister written while he was serving with the 25th Virginia Infantry Regiment. The letter of March 11 mentions the Kilpatrick-Dahlgren Raid.
- McDonald, Marshall. Papers. (MS 0169)
McDonald , VMI Class of 1860, served in the Engineer Corps, CSA and after the Civil War taught Chemistry, Mineralogy, & Geology at VMI. He was the first U.S. Commissioner of Fish. The collection includes correspondence (1861-1889); notes & reports on geological & other topics.
- McKay family letter. (MS 0390) Online Access
One letter from Confederate soldier P. B. McKay to his wife Mary B. McKay. The letter, ca. 1862, was written from Baldwin Mississippi. McKay describes fighting near Corinth, Mississippi; hardships of war; and effort to obtain a substitute so that he can return home. McKay's unit and other biographical details are not known.
- Meader, Horace P., documents. (MS 0152)
Two Civil War discharge documents issued to Private Horace P. Meader of the 24th Massachusetts Infantry, U.S. Army. Dated 28 Dec 1863 at St. Augustine, Florida; and 20 Jan 1866 at Richmond, Virginia; 2 documents concerning the Civil War pension given to Meader's widow.
- Merritt, Howard J., documents. (MS 0184)
Letter from VMI's Adjutant James H. Morrison to Merritt's father, enclosing 2 orders pertaining to his son's dismissal from VMI (Cadet Merritt was dismissed for deserting his post as sentinel & breaking into a storeroom to obtain bread) and subsequent reinstatement. Letter dated Feb 25, 1865; orders dated Feb 15 & 23, 1865. Merritt was a member of the Class of 1868.
- Merritt, James L., letters. (MS 0337) Online Access
Biographical note: James Love Merritt b. 1845, VMI Class of 1867, wounded at the Battle of New Market, Civil Engineer and farmer, d. 1911. Descriptive note: 2 letters from Cadet Merritt to his father. 1863 Nov 24, discusses school expenses, mentions the Corps being called to defend against Averell's raids; reports dissatisfaction with VMI (complains of hunger, gets "beef, irish potatoes, milk" only). May 16, 1864 written on the day after the Battle of New Market. Merritt describes being wounded, action on battlefield, mentions cadets Norborne C. Lewis (Class of 1867) and John A. Crichton (Class of 1866). Letter was possibly written from the Bushong House near the battlefield.
- Meyer, A., letter (MS 0442) The collection consists of one letter from Confederate cavalry soldier A. (possibly Andrew) Meyer, dated October 17, 1863, written from Headquarters, Department of East Tennessee, Abingdon, Virginia. The letter is addressed to Mrs. Mary Taylor Fulton, the widow of the Reverend Creed Fulton and the mother of VMI New Market Cadet Charles M. Fulton. (VMI Class of 1867). Mrs. Fulton was living at Rich Valley, Smythe County, Virginia. The letter concerns Meyer's request to leave his horse on the Fulton farm until spring; he also briefly mentions the campaign in Tennessee.
- Mock, Sanford J., Confederate Bond collection. (MS 0328)
A collection of over 100 bonds issued by the Confederate States of America and by individual southern states.
- Morgan Family Civil War Papers (MS 0356) Online Access
Letters (8 items), 1862-1864, addressed to Cadet Patrick H. Morgan, Class of 1866. Those from his father (James B. Morgan of Currituck Co., NC) contain family and war news; topics include enemy raids for food and supplies, diphtheria, uncle's death in battle; hardships of war. Other letters (3 items) are from family, friends and cousin John B. Wiginton. Also includes Cadet Morgan's written excuses to the Commandant for various infractions, April - May 1863
- Munford, Thomas T., papers. (MS 0158)
Misc. papers of Gen. Munford, VMI Class of 1852, CSA General. Two personal letters from Munford: 1861 April 18 to Charles Ellis, discussing the outbreak of war; 1865 May 21 to Sallie Munford, expressing sadness caused by defeat. Collection also includes the architecture text used by Munford at VMI, incl. original drawings. Additional information about Munford is located in his alumni biographical file.
- Myers, Derastus E. W., letter. (MS 0379). Online Access
One ALS, dated 11 May 1863, from Confederate soldier D.E.W. Myers to his brother and sister. The letter was written from "Camp Near Hamilton's Crossing" after the Battle of Chancellorsville; topics include death of Gen. Stonewall Jackson. Myers served as a Sergeant with the 33rd Virginia Infantry Regiment.
- Nalle Family Letters. (MS 0223)
2 items. One letter written to Cadet Nalle (Class of 1867 & New Market cadet) by his father, Pendleton Nalle. Dated January 15, 1865, the letter urges Cadet Nalle to remain at VMI rather than join the Confederate Army. Also letter fragment from Cadet Nalle's mother, ca. 1865.
- New Market Collection (MS 0002) Includes Porter Johnson reminiscences.
- Norton, John T., letter. (MS 0401) Online Access
Letter written by Union soldier John T. Norton (Lieut., 97th Regiment New York State Volunteers) to his father, Morgan Norton of Norway, NY. The letter is dated May 23rd, 1863. Norton discusses the Battle of Chancellorsville and mentions the death of Stonewall Jackson, referring to him as "the bravest of the brave."
- Oakes, Benjamin F., letter. (MS 0392) Online Access
One letter (December 13, 1864) from Union soldier Capt. Benjamin F. Oakes of the 1st Maine Heavy Artillery to J. G. Richardson. The letter was written from "in the field" near Petersburg, Virginia. Oakes describes in detail the destruction of the Weldon Railroad by Union troops and the burning buildings in Sussex Courthouse, VA. Oakes was originally from Old Town, Maine and resided post-war in East Tawas, Michigan.
- Pendleton, Alexander S. ( Sandie ), papers. (MS 0412) Online Access
Civil War papers (9 items) of Sandie Pendleton, a member of Stonewall Jackson's staff. The documents consist of orders and dispatches; note to his father concerning Jackson's death, and other miscellaneous documents.
- Pettigrew, Albert H., document. (MS 0173)
Request dated November 25, 1862 from Captain Pettigrew (VMI Class of 1864) to Gen. Robert E. Lee, asking to have Private Snow transferred to Pettigrew's Company.
- Phillips, James J., Collection (MS 0497)
Collection includes Confederate Army Commission. Phillips served in the 9th Virginia Infantry Regiment.
- Pizzini, Andrew Jr., document. (MS 0109) Online Access
Class of 1865; New Market cadet. Civil War parole document dated April 18, 1865.
- Poague, William T., Collection. (MS 0143)
Poague (VMI Treasurer & Military Storekeeper, 1884-1914) commanded the Rockbridge Artillery & Poague's Battalion during the Civil War. The collection, 1861-1911 contains the manuscript version of his Civil War memoirs, 1903 (later published as Gunner with Stonewall); misc. other documents including letters, battery rolls.
- Price, Berryman Z./Price's Artillery Company roster. (MS 0342) Online Access
Primarily account book Shenandoah Valley farmers Jacob and Berryman Price, 1845-1874. However, it includes the roster (circa 1864) of the unit known as Price's Light Artillery, commanded by Captain Berryman Zirkle Price.
- Radford, William N., papers (MS 0380). Online Access
Biographical note: William Norvell Radford, b. Lynchburg, Virginia 1846; VMI Class of 1867 and New Market Cadet; farmer; died 1872, Bedford Co. William Murray Chalmers, b. 1845, Halifax Co., VA; VMI Class of 1867 and New Market Cadet; teacher; died 1895, Danville, VA. Chalmers married Radford's sister. Descriptive note: 2 items One telegram, dated May 16, 1864, sent by Cadet William N. Radford to his father after the Battle of New Market. Radford states that " I escaped unhurt in the fight yesterday...." One holograph note, May 15, 1864, from Cadet William M. Chalmers to his mother; states that he is unhurt after the battle.
- Reid, James Henry. Papers. (MS 0222). Online Access
Correspondence of James Henry Reid, Class of 1866. 13 letters written to parents while a Rat at VMI (Aug-Nov 1862), containing references to cadet life, hazing, uniforms, food, guard duty, etc. 1 letter (1864 march 7) written while serving with the 13th Virginia Artillery Regiment.
- Rinker, Michael F., letter (MS 0381). Online Access
ALS, May 17, 1864, from Confederate soldier Michael F. Rinker (Private, Company F, 136th Regiment, Virginia Militia) to his parents. Written from camp near Spotsylvania Courthouse; discusses battle at Spotsylvania, emphasizing enemy causalities; mentions Battle of New Market (Virginia).
- Roller, John E., papers. (MS 0171). Online Access Selected Items
Roller was a member of the VMI Class of 1863 and a CSA officer. Papers include personal correspondence; scrapbook of Civil War clippings; 19 Civil War dispatches, including document signed by Gen. Robert E. Lee; letters concerning cadet life at VMI, 1862-1864; misc. VMI-related items.
- Royster, Lawrence. Civil War Parole Document. (MS 0069) Online Access
Biographical note: b. 1841, New Kent Co., Virginia; Honorary graduate, VMI Class of 1866; New Market Cadet; farmer, accountant, Court Clerk; d. 1914, Richmond, Virginia. Descriptive note: 1 item. Parole granted to Lawrence Royster after surrender of the Confederacy, dated May 16, 1865. The document gives him "permission to go to his home in Richmond, VA."
- Rutherfoord, Thomas M., papers. (MS 0179)
Rutherfoord was a member of the VMI Class of 1867, New Market Cadet, & CSA veteran. Misc. papers include paroled prisoner's pass, dated 1865 April 10 from Appomattox Court House; misc. incoming letter & other documents (1906-1911), mostly concerned with Confederate veterans' activities.
- Rutherford, Robert H., collection (MS 0389)
Biographical note: Robert Henderson Rutherford, b. 1844 Cumberland Co., Virginia; VMI Class of 1865; Private, 3rd Virginia Cavalry Regiment, CSA; died of illness contracted in army, Jan. 1863. Descriptive note: The collection consists of 2 items: One letter (February 14th, 1862) from Cadet Robert H. Rutherford to his cousin Louisa Henderson Perkins, in which he describes life at VMI and mentions Valentine's Day; and Rutherford's prayer book.
- Scofield, Uri B., Diary (MS 0429)
Three volume Civil War era diary of Union soldier Private Uri B. Scofield of Killingly, CT (b. 1826 d. 1894), who served with the 18th Connecticut Volunteer Infantry Regiment. The diary entries are not detailed, although some information about regimental activities is provided. Volume 1 (1864) includes the unit's march through the Shenandoah Valley and mentions the burning of the Virginia Military Institute in June 1864.
- Shields, John H., letters. (MS 0045).
Letters (3 items) written by Cadet John H. Shields to his parents while he was a cadet at VMI. Items are dated March 24 and April 7, 1864; and undated letter fragment. In addition to routine matters, letter of March 24 mentions faculty member Thomas H. Williamson going to Panther's Gap to "survey the land, and to make arrangements for throwing up fortifications and breastworks"; and discusses how the cadets coped with the rationing of food. Misc. unrelated document: field dispatch, July 31, 1862, from A.P. Mason to Brig. Gen. Charles S. Winder mentioning Gen. Robert E. Lee.
- Shriver Family Letter. (MS 0174)
One letter (1861 December 23) from John Brannon (Board of Visitors, 1861-1864) to the father of Samuel Shriver (Class of 1864 & New Market cadet). Brannon informs Mr. Shriver of Samuel's appointment to VMI.
- Smith, Edward H., autograph album. (MS 0313)
Autograph book (ca. 3" x 4.75", yellow paper cover, spine missing) compiled by New Market Cadet Edward Harvie Smith, Jr., VMI Class of 1865. Contains signed inscriptions by 19 fellow New Market Cadets.
- Smith, Francis Lee Family. Documents. (MS 0180)
Includes items re: Francis L. Smith, Jr., of the VMI Class of 1867 & a New Market cadet. Misc. papers, incl. oath of allegiance verification (1865); letter from VMI Treasurer R.H. Campbell with enclosure (1867); telegram (1887).
- Snodgrass John B., letters. (MS 0072) Online Access
Biographical note: b. 1843, Berkeley County, West Virginia; non graduate, VMI Class of 1864; physician; d. 1908, Martinsburg, WVA. Descriptive note: 8 letters and 1 letter fragment from Cadet Snodgrass to his sister Kate. All dated 1862 and written from VMI. Primary topic is the war and its effect on his family; occasional references to VMI. Mentions that Corps of Cadets has been ordered to aid General Jackson (see April 19, May 1, May 18); says he is "anxious to get a shot at the enemy."
- Stegman, George H., collection (MS 0275)
A collection of approximately 1000 engravings and mounted photographs, collected by George H. Stegman, which depict various aspects of American military and political history. Subjects include Confederate and Union officers; battles; prisons & other buildings; Presidents and statesmen; Revolutionary and Mexican War officers; bridges.
- Stevenson, Thomas A., papers. (MS 0175) Online Access
5 items, 1860-1862. Three letters from Cadet Stevenson (VMI Class of 1864) to his sister, in which he discusses the possibility of war, activities at VMI after announcement of secession; visitor's pass for Maria Stevenson; letter introducing Cadet Stevenson to Major Taylor.
- Stanard, Jaqueline Beverly. Papers. (MS 0083). Online Access
Biographical note: b.1845, Orange County, Virginia; Bev entered VMI in January 1863 as a member of the Class of 1867; killed at the Battle of New Market on May 15, 1864, while serving as a Cadet Private, Co. B. Descriptive note: Collection (ca. 20 items) includes letters from Cadet Stanard to his family (1863-1864); telegram concerning Stanard's body; letters from his brother Robert to their mother (1865); 2 essays written at VMI. Many of these letters, as well as material from other sources, appear in the book Letters of a New Market cadet, edited by John G. Barrett and Robert K. Turner, Jr. (Chapel Hill, University of North Carolina Press, 1961).
- Stuart, William Dabney. Papers. (MS 0108) Online Access
Biographical note: William Dabney Stuart, b. 1830, Staunton, Virginia; graduate, Virginia Military Institute, Class of 1850; Colonel, 56th Virginia Infantry Regiment, CSA; mortally wounded at Gettysburg; died in a hospital in Staunton on July 29, 1863.
Descriptive note: Civil War papers (ca. 60 items), 1861-1863, of Col. William Dabney Stuart. Collection consists primarily of correspondence to and from various officers; morning and guard reports; orders; and invoices and receipts documenting his brief service with the 15th Virginia Infantry Regiment and his command of the 56th Virginia Infantry Regiment. Misc. other items include letters of recommendation for United States Army Commission, 1850; letter from Gabriel Jordan, Jr. (Class of 1850) to Stuart, Nov. 1854; and misc. printed material.
- Taylor, Walter H., documents. (MS 0480)
Walter Herron Taylor graduated from VMI in 1857 and served as Gen. Robert E. Lee's Adjutant General during the Civil War. The collection contains three Civil War documents relating to Col. Walter H. Taylor's Confederate Army Service. 1. Letter from Taylor to "Lucien" (surname not known), dated 24 October 1864. Taylor declines his friend's invitation to his wedding, stating that his service as Gen. Robert E. Lee's Adjutant General prevents him from taking any leave. 2.Order, HQ Army of Northern Virginia, 23 August 1864. Signed by Taylor, regarding furloughs. 3. Dispatch from Briscoe Baldwin to Taylor, regarding an officer's assignment, dated February 28, 1865.
- Terrill, James B., letter. (MS 0161) Online Access
The collection consists of one letter (April 5, 1861) from James B. Terrill (VMI Class of 1858; CSA General) to Gov. Letcher. Terrill offers to serve as an officer in the Virginia Volunteers and gives a brief account of his previous military experience.
- Thomas, Thornton. Document (MS 0384) Online Access
Confederate States of America receipt for purchase of $1000 in bonds, issued to Thornton Thomas. The document is dated March 31, 1864, Harrisonburg, Virginia.
- Thomson, James W., Papers (MS 0239)
James Walton Thomson b. 1843, Summit Point, WV; VMI Class of 1864; Major, Horse Artillery, CSA; killed in battle near High Bridge, VA, 1865 April. Descriptive note: 13 letters, dated 1860, written by the family and friends of James W. Thomson. The letters were received by Thomson while he was a cadet at the Virginia Military Institute and contain family and personal news. Correspondents include Thomson's mother, grandmother, brother, sister and cousin. One letter, dated September 10, 1861, is from Col. John Pelham who discusses an army appointment for Thomson.
- Tredway, Thomas B., letter. (MS 0176)
One letter from Cadet Tredway to his father, dated February 17, 1862. He discusses the daily routine at VMI and mentions that the cadets have offered their services to Gov. Letcher. Tredway was later killed at Gettysburg while serving with the 53rd Virginia Infantry.
- Trimble, Isaac R., letters. (MS 0400)
Two letters (1862 and 1870) written by Confederate Brigadier General Isaac R. Trimble. The first, dated July 24, 1862 and addressed to "Genl." (possibly to Stonewall Jackson), reports that he has occupied Manassas, captured guns and stores, and taken prisoners. The second item, dated October 1870, declines an invitation to a fair.
- Triplett, John R., letter. (MS 0367)
Biographical note: b. 1845, Richmond, Virginia; member VMI Class of 1866; New Market cadet; resigned cadetship on Feb. 1, 1865 to enter Confederate Army; after war worked in iron industry; d. 1882. Descriptive note: one letter from Cadet Triplett to his cousin, dated October 11, 1863. Discusses difficulty of having new shoes made because of the scarcity of leather.
- Tunstall, John L., papers (MS 0181)
Miscellaneous personal papers (5 items) of Cadet John L. Tunstall. Includes one letter from Cadet Tunstall to his mother, in which he describes the ceremonies marking the second anniversary of the Battle of New Market (including the reinterment of 5 of the cadets killed at New Market), recalls the horror of the war, and mentions visit of Robert E. Lee to Stonewall Jackson's gravesite; 2 notebooks containing VMI class notes (Engineering); one photograph album, containing ca. 33 images of classmates, family and others; and one book from his personal library, "The Sociable Story Teller."
- Turner, Charles W., letter. (MS 0182)
One letter (1865 March 28) from Turner (VMI Class of 1867 & New Market cadet) to Major Garnett Andrews, requesting a promotion in Andrews' battalion.
- Veitch, Wilberforce. Document. (MS 00041) Leave of absence document issued to Cadet Wilberforce Veitch (VMI Class of 1867). Issued from VMI's temporary headquarters at the Alms House in Richmond, Virginia on April 3, 1865, when the Corps was disbanded during the evacuation of the city.
- VMI Civil War Military Training Advertisement. (MS 0178) Online Access
Civil War era VMI circular, printed in May 1861, sent to prospective cadets who wanted to enroll solely for the purpose of military training.
- Wade, Thomas M., Letters. (MS 0474) Online Access
Thomas morrell Wade, Jr. served in the 1st Rockbridge Artillery. The collection consists of 3 Civil War era letters from Wade to his sister Lou, dated 1862-1863 while he was serving in the Confederate Army. Topics include daily camp life; personal news; and brief references to Stonewall Jackson and the battle at Sharpsburg.
- Watson, William G. Memoirs. (MS 0037) Online Access
Civil War memoirs of a Union (Ohio) soldier who served during the Shenandoah Valley Campaign, May-June 1864. Mentions burning of the Virginia Military Institute by Gen. David Hunter's troops; recounts his regiment's retreat from Lynchburg to Charleston.
- Weisiger, Oscar F., Letter. (MS 0285) Online Access
One Civil War era manuscript letter (dated Richmond, VA; May 29, 1865) from O. F. Weisiger to Q. M. Ward of Big Lick, Roanoke Co. Virginia. Weisiger discusses in detail the events he witnessed during the evacuation and burning of Richmond in early April and its subsequent occupation by Union troops.
- Welsh, John P., letter. (MS 0344)
ALS, May 12, 1863, written by Confederate soldier John P. Welsh to his wife and mother. Welsh, a staff officer, was in camp near Hamilton's Crossing after the Battle of Chancellorsville. Mentions death of Stonewall Jackson.
- White, Thomas W., document. (MS #183)
Commission document appointing White (Class of 1867 & New Market cadet) a Second Lieutenant in the Abingdon Virginia Militia, dated 1863 June 27. Signed by Governor John Letcher.
- Williams, William P., collection (MS 0382) Online Access
Biographical note: William Patterson Williams, b. 1834, d. 1919. Confederate soldier who served with the 51st Virginia Infantry Regiment. Descriptive note: Miscellaneous items (3) pertaining to the life of Confederate soldier William P. Williams. The collection consists of an oath of allegiance document, 1865; a photograph of Williams taken ca. 1880's; and the newspaper account of his death, 1919.
- Williamson family letter. (MS 0405).
Early Civil War letter written by Confederate soldier [I or G] D. Williamson of Rockingham County, Virginia, to his wife. The letter is dated July 20, 1861 and was written from "Fair grounds, Winchester, VA." Williamson mentions the ongoing battle at Manassas and report s that "we are victorious so far;" he discusses the importance of the battle ("It is the pivot on which our struggle is to turn"); he expresses concern that McClellan's troops may enter Rockingham County and instructs her "if anything of that sort should happen Uncle must drive all our stock away and not be caught as were many of the farmers in Berkeley, who lost every thing, stock, negroes and all." Williamson's biographical and unit information were not known at time of cataloging.
- Williamson, Thomas H., Papers. (MS 0105) Online Access
My Service with Stonewall Jackson.
Thomas Hoomes Williamson (1813-1888), served as Professor of Engineering and Drawing at VMI for 47 years. In April 1862, Maj. Gen. Stonewall Jackson requested that Williamson be temporarily released from his duties at the Institute and assigned to Jackson's command. Many years after the war (ca. 1883), Williamson wrote this account of his time with Jackson.
- Williamson, William G., papers. (MS 0205) Online Access
Williamson was a member of the VMI Class of 1864MS & served as Captain, Co. A, 1st Confederate States Engineers. Bulk consists of his Civil War reports (1862-1863) detailing Confederate Army service; also includes undated notes on drawing, engineering; Williamson Family genealogy.
- Wilson, Harry L., collection (MS 0351)
A collection of manuscripts, 9 items, principally autograph letters of Civil War notables dating 1858-1906. The collection was compiled by Harry L. Wilson, Jr. and donated to the Virginia Military Institute Archives. Items include a dispatch, 1862 April 28, from Stonewall Jackson to Gen. Ewell, requesting Ewell's presence. Other signed documents are in the hand of Robert E. Lee (1858), James Longstreet (1893), Jeb Stuart (1863), Mrs. Jeb Stuart (1886), Wade Hampton (1889), and John Mosby (undated), and Henry "Light horse Harry" Lee (1794). Also one photocopied letter from Mosby to James Keith, 1906.
- Wilson, N. Claiborne & related family papers. (MS 0490) Online Access (selected items)
The collection consists of the Civil War papers of Nathaniel Claiborne Wilson (VMI Class of 1861) and misc. papers of other family members. Of the N. C. Wilson portion of the collection, the most significant item is a diary-account book fragment which includes entries (July 25th-July 3, the day of his death) from Pennsylvania and the battlefield at Gettysburg.
- Wingfield, Samuel G., notebook. (MS 0137)
Notebook, 1864-1865, of Cadet Wingfield, VMI Class of 1867 and New Market Cadet. Contains brief inscriptions written by classmates; short play or skit, probably original.
- Witt, James E., letter. (MS 0477)
One letter from New Market Cadet James E. Witt (Class of 1867), written from VMI HQ at the Alms House in Richmond, VA, dated 1865 February 8. Witt had just resigned his cadetship in order to join the Confederate Army during what turned out to be the last weeks of the war. The letter, addressed to "Dear Miss" [Fannie, last name unknown] is largely personal in nature, involving his relationship with the young woman. However, he does mention the resignation of large numbers of cadets, all trying to join the army.
- Yarbrough, William T., letters. MS 0421
The collection consists of five letters documenting Civil War cadet life (October 1863-May 1864), written by Cadet William T. Yarbrough, VMI Class of 1867. Yarbrough was a member of the New Market Corps who did not take part in the battle due to ill health (he was left at VMI with the guard detail). The letters, addressed to his parents, include references to academics, uniforms, flirting with local girls, and family concerns. The letter dated May 18, 1864 briefly mentions the fact that the Corps had engaged in Battle at New Market, but does not contain substantive information about the battle. Biographical note: after leaving VMI Yarbough was in the tobacco business in Richmond, Virginia. He died in 1895 and is buried in Hollywood cemetery, Richmond.
- Civil War Miscellany (MS 0079)
A small collection of miscellaneous Civil War/Confederacy-related items, including autographs, souvenirs, postcards, printed materials.
- Stamps and covers collection (MS 0286)A collection, approximately 30 items, of stamps and envelopes donated to VMI by various individuals. Includes examples of Civil War covers and postage stamps
- McCormack, Rodney. Collection. (MS 0503) McCormack (Class of 1957) was a collector who acquired ephemera, misc. documents etc. This collection contains a few misc. Civil War era documents, including 2 items signed by Union Gen. Franz Sigel; receipt (Legh W. Reid, Class of 1858); G. Julian Pratt (Class of 1864MS); leave request (Huffman, 30th Virginia Battalion); document (Dunbar, 29th Regt. Indiana Volunteers); VMI cadet invitation to Rockbridge Rifles.