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Civil War Letter

Identifier: MS-2906

  • Staff Only

This collection houses one letter from a Union soldier named Josh stationed in Memphis, Tennessee to his sister Beulah written on May 10, 1863. He is distressed about his orders to leave Memphis and head towards Vicksburg, Mississippi. He writes that he is quite comfortable in the home of a Secesh woman inside the city of Memphis, but is glad to escape the city because of the increasing spread of the disease smallpox. Josh mentions his unknowing exposure to the disease through one of his friends, but says he has no symptoms as of yet. His regiment was told to leave all tents behind for the wounded and ill, and Josh writes that he dreads sleeping on the ground.


  • 1863 May 10

Conditions Governing Access

Collections are stored offsite, and a minimum of 2 business days are needed to retrieve these items for use. Researchers interested in consulting any of the collections are advised to contact Special Collections.

Conditions Governing Use

The copyright interests in this collection remain with the creator. For more information, contact the Special Collections Library.


0.1 Linear Feet


In this letter to his sister Beulah, Union army soldier Josh reports that his orders are to head to Mississippi on 1863 May 10. He is unhappy at the prospect of leaving his current lodgings at a Secesh woman's home, but glad to escape the rampant spread of smallpox through Memphis, Tennessee.

Biographical/Historical Note

Josh likely served with an Ohio regiment during the Civil War, as several of the relatives he mentions in this letter hail from that state.


Collection consists of a single folder

Acquisition Note

This collection was purchased on 2006 June 8.

Repository Details

Part of the Betsey B. Creekmore Special Collections and University Archives, University of Tennessee, Knoxville Repository

University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Knoxville TN 37996 USA