Go to USC home page USC Logo South Caroliniana Library
UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH CAROLINA

SCL HOME

ABOUT SCL

CONTACTS

MANUSCRIPTS DIVISION

ORAL HISTORY

PUBLISHED MATERIALS

UNIVERSITY ARCHIVES

VISUAL MATERIALS

EXHIBITS

FINDING AIDS

ONLINE PUBLICATIONS

S.C. NEWSPAPERS

SUPPORT SCL

UNIVERSITY SOUTH CAROLINIANA SOCIETY

     LIBRARIES

     HOURS

     MAPS

 

Williams Family Papers, 1861-1865   
    A gift to SCL Manuscripts Division announced in 2008

| Manuscripts Gifts 2008 | Front Page 2008 | Previous Issues | Friends of the Library |

Ten letters, 1861-1865, written by and to members of the Williams family of Edgefield County, S.C., chiefly document the Civil War activities of H.J., James C., and T.H. Williams, all members of Co. G, Seventh South Carolina Infantry.

The first letter, dated 13 June 1861, written by James C. Williams shortly after his arrival in Richmond to his brother describes his travel to Virginia by train via Charlotte, Raleigh, Weldon, and Petersburg. Upon reaching Raleigh they were given a dinner of “fried ham, Boiled ham, Buiscuit, [and] Coffee” by the local citizens. After arriving in Richmond, described by Williams as “the greatest place I was ever in,” they were treated to another dinner, after which “we marched through the town about a mile to the Railroad...and kept up a constant cheering as we passed along the streets.” He ends his first letter by informing his brother that his regiment will soon be moved to Manassas Junction.

James’ next letter was penned on 24 August 1861 from Vienna, Virginia to his mother. In it he describes a “yankey Buton” that was taken “off the coat of a Yankee as we storm[ed] the Breas[t]work of the Enemy on Sunday Evening 21 July” that he is sending to his brother Creswell. He also enclosed “a small Trofie...I carved it out of a Piece of cedar the Tree of which was cut down by a canon Ball fired at our Pickett on the seventeenth of July.”

The final letter from James, dated 24 December 1863, and written from Morrisville, Tennessee, details his involvement in a battle near Bean’s Station and wishes a “Happy Christmas to you all.”

H.J. Williams’ first letter was addressed to his father and was written from Vienna, Va., on 30 September 1861. It is chiefly devoted to answering his father’s questions about matters in Edgefield, S.C. Regarding a tan yard that his father was thinking of starting, H.J. declares that “I cannot spend my vews for I do not think that I aught to meddle with things that dose not intierly belong to me.” He then informs his father that he wishes his African American slaves to be hired out again at the end of the year, but leaves the financial details to the elder’s discretion. When H.J. wrote home again on 1 June 1862, he was camped on the Chickahominy River 6 miles south of Richmond. He notes that everything is quiet following a recent battle except there is a “yankey canon gust opasite our camp... evry now and then fireing a cross at some one.”

Also included is a letter from James’ and H.J.’s youngest brother, Creswell M. Williams, dated 7 January 1865, from Augusta, Georgia. In it he relates that he is currently in the “May Hospital” recovering from the measles, and that he wishes his father to come visit him as soon as possible. If he is able to visit he wants his father to bring “a bottle of Molasses and a few saussages and some biscuits and some potatoes and some sweet cakes.”

The collection also contains a letter written by James H. Lamb on 21 October 1862 from the Chimboroza Army Hospital in Richmond to a “Mrs. Williames.” In it Lamb describes the deaths of “Shammus” who was “Martley wounded” on 28 September and “Filley” who was wounded the same day. The latter had his left arm amputated and died shortly thereafter. The writer declared “if he bin a Brouther I Could Not have felt Mutch warse then I Did when I herd it,” but assured Mrs. Williams that “Filley often Spoke of preaching he tolde that he entended to Studey the Bible More...I have Not the Least Dout...he is Gon home to rest.”

| Manuscripts Gifts 2008 | Previous Issues | Endowments | Friends of the Library |

 

RETURN TO TOP SITE INFORMATION