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Special Collections Online at UT

John M. Hollis Papers

Identifier: MS-3222

  • Staff Only

The diary housed in this collection constitutes John M. Hollis's personal account of the Civil War and documents his service with the 38th Illinois Infantry Regiment in Arkansas, Missouri, Mississippi, Alabama, Kentucky, and Tennessee. Much of the diary is devoted to descriptions of the unit's surroundings and the day's march, but Hollis also provides descriptions of two major battles. The first of these battles began at Perryville, Kentucky on 1862 October 8 and was the largest battle fought in that state during the Civil War. Hollis notes that the Union Army captured 90 prisoners and describes the burying of the dead following the battle.

The next major fighting that Hollis describes began at Murfreesboro, Tennessee on 1862 December 31. Hollis depicts the beginning of the battle as being like a stampede. He mentions the strength of the Confederate line and notes that they did not gain much ground in the initial push. He is optimistic on January 1: "Still the fight continues though not so terable as the day before our men holds there position with great effort." The fighting died down by January 4th, but Hollis's unit remained in Murfreesboro for some time after.


  • 1861 August 12-1863 April 27

Conditions Governing Access

Collections are stored offsite and must be requested in advance. See for detailed information. Collections must be requested through a registered Special Collections research account.

Conditions Governing Use

The UT Libraries claims only physical ownership of most material in the collections. Persons wishing to broadcast or publish this material must assume all responsibility for identifying and satisfying any claimants on for detailed information. Collections must be requested through a registered Special Collections research account.


0.1 Linear Feet (2 folders)


The diary housed in this collection documents John M. Hollis's Civil War service, including his enlistment and training and his unit's marches through Arkansas, Missouri, Mississippi, Tennessee, Alabama, and Kentucky. Of particular interest are the descriptions of fierce battles at Murfreesboro, Tennessee and Perryville, Kentucky.

Biographical/Historical Note

John M. Hollis was born in January 1843 in Ohio. His family later moved to Mason, Illinois. Hollis joined Company B of the 38th Illinois Infantry on August 12, 1861. He was later promoted to sergeant-major and mustered out on March 2, 1866. After the war, he settled in Kansas with his family.


This collection consists of two folders.

Acquisition Note

This collection was purchased by Special Collections, 2007 November 14.

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