Civil War Manuscripts

Civil War Cadets, 1861

Quick Guide

This list is made available for researchers who want to browse a concise list of personal papers relating to the Civil War era. Includes are letters, diaries and other manuscripts.

Detailed information about these and many other collections is found the Archives Online Catalog.


Collection Spotlight: Andrew Gatewood Papers

Letters written by Gatewood to his parents and other family members, 1860-1864. Early letters describe life at the Virginia Military Institute (hazing, daily routine, excitement about secession, cadets as drillmasters) and in Lexington, Virginia, just prior to and during early months of the Civil War. Subsequent letters date from his service with the 11th Virginia Cavalry Regiment,Company F, (Bath Squadron).  View originals and read full text

7th Virginia Cavalry Quartermaster documents.  (MS 0399)  Available Online
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)   Available Online
5th Alabama Infantry Regiment and  Engineer Corps on General Wheeler's staff, captured near Nashville; prisoner of war Sept. 1863-June 1865, one of "immortal 600".  Civil War papers including prison correspondence.

Allen, Julia Pendleton. Letter.    Available Online
A Confederate officer's wife in Winchester, Virginia, February 1862.

Atwill, Samuel F., papers.   (MS 0061)  Available Online 
Cadet mortally wounded at Battle of New Market on May 15, 1864. 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)   Available Online
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).    Available Online 
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)   Available Online
 Diary of 16 year old soldier Edward T. Beall,  Private, 62nd Virginia Infantry, covering period April-October 1863.

Bentley, William W., letter (MS 0117) .   Available Online 
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)   Available Online
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)    Available Online
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)  Available Online
4 documents granting a presidential pardon to John Borders of Calhoun, Co., Alabama, 1865-1866.

Botts, Lawson. Papers. (MS 0064)      Available Online
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)  Available Online
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). Available Online  
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)  Available Online
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) Available Online
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)    Available Online
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.

Carpenter, Joseph H., papers. (MS 0333)  Available Online (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) Available Online
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)  Available Online
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.

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;" 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)  Available Online
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, Va; 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.

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). 
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).   Available Online
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)   Available Online (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 (August 26, 1862) written by Union soldier James M. Drake of Sharon, Mass., who served with the 33rd Massachusetts Infantry, (Company M & later K). Addressed to his father and 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, and discusses Union officers view of Stonewall Jackson.

Dunlap Family letters. (MS 0373)  Available Online
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.

 

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).    Available Online 
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)   Available Online
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)    Available Online
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).    Available Online
Correspondence, 1862-1864, of Sgt. John Garibaldi, 27th Virginia Infantry Regiment.

Garland, Samuel. Commission Document.  (MS 0118)   Available Online
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)   Available Online
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)    Available Online 
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).  Available Online
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).    Available Online   
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)   Available Online   
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) Available Online 
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)   Available Online 
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) Available Online
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).

Hempstead, Junius, letter. (MS 0172)  Available Online
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)  Available Online 
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)  Available Online
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) Available Online
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).   Available Online   
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) Available Online
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.

Jackson, Stonewall. Papers. (MS 0102).   Available Online
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)
VMI Class of 1866 and New Market cadet.  16 letters, written after war, but one letter described wartime events.  See 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)     Available Online
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).   Available Online
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.

Koontz, George W., Letter. (item in MS 0102) Available Online
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).   Available Online   
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)  Available Online
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. Endorsed on the verso by Gen. 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)    Available Online
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. General Ewell's reply, via Col. Ewell, is on reverse.

Lohr, Zirkle. Document. (MS  0377)  Available Online
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.  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)    Available Online 
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) Available Online   
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)  Available Online
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).  Available Online
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).  Available Online
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)  Available Online
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)   Available Online  
 James Love Merritt , VMI Class of 1867, wounded at the Battle of New Market.  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. 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)  Available Online
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).   Available Online
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.v

New Market Collection  (MS 0002)   Includes Porter Johnson reminiscences.

Norton, John T., letter.  (MS 0401)  Available Online
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)  Available Online 
One letter (December 13, 1864) from Union soldier Capt. Benjamin F. Oakes of the 1st Maine Heavy Artillery; written from "in the field" near Petersburg, Virginia. Oakes describes in detail the destruction of the Weldon Railroad and other events.

Pendleton, Alexander S. ( Sandie ), papers.   (MS 0412)  Available Online
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)   Available Online
 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)  Available Online
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).  Available Online
Radford was VMI Class of 1867 and New Market Cadet. Telegram sent after the Battle of New Market to family assuring them of safety. One item by classmate William Chalmers who with similar message.

Reid, James Henry. Papers. (MS 0222).    Available Online 
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).  Available Online
Letter 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).    Available Online 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)  Available Online
Honorary graduate, VMI Class of 1866; New Market Cadet.  Parole granted to Royster after surrender of the Confederacy, dated May 16, 1865. 

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)
VMI Class of 1865; Private, 3rd Virginia Cavalry Regiment, CSA; died of illness contracted in army, Jan. 1863. Letter, 1862, describing life at VMI; 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.  Volume 1 (1864) includes the unit's march through the Shenandoah Valley and mentions the burning of the VMI in June 1864.

Shields, John H., letters. (MS 0045). 
Letters, 1864 (3 items),  written by Shields to his parents while he was a cadet at VMI. 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.

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) Available Online
Class of 1864. 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)

Stanard, Jaqueline Beverly. Papers.   (MS 0083). Available Online
VMI Class of 1867; killed at the Battle of New Market on May 15, 1864, while serving as a Cadet Private, Co. B. Collection (ca. 20 items) includes letters from Cadet Stanard to his family (1863-1864); telegram concerning Stanard's body.

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)     Available Online   
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.

Stuart, William Dabney. Papers. (MS 0108) Available Online
VMI Class of 1850; Colonel, 56th Virginia Infantry Regiment, CSA; mortally wounded at Gettysburg; died in a hospital in Staunton on July 29, 1863.
Civil War papers (ca. 60 items), 1861-1863, including 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.

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, including letter, order and dispatch.

Terrill, James B., letter. (MS 0161)   Available Online  
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)  Available Online
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, VMI Class of 1864; Major, Horse Artillery, CSA; killed in battle near High Bridge, VA, 1865 April.  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.

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) 
VMI Class of 1866; New Market cadet. One letter 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; VMI class notes; photograph album

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 0041) 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) Available Online
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) Available Online
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; brief references to Stonewall Jackson and the battle at Sharpsburg.

Watson, William G. Memoirs. (MS 0037)  Available Online
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) Available Online
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 0183) 
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) Available Online
William Patterson Williams, b. 1834, d. 1919. Confederate soldier who served with the 51st Virginia Infantry Regiment.  Miscellaneous items (3) - 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).  Available Online
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. Williamson's biographical and unit information were not known at time of cataloging.

Williamson, Thomas H., Papers. (MS 0105) Available Online
My Service with Stonewall Jackson. Memoirs. 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.

Williamson, William G., papers. (MS 0205)   Available Online
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.

Wilson, N. Claiborne & related family papers.  (MS 0490) Available Online (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; mentions 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.

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.