Civil War Letters

Pvt. William Ozias Wells,
Eckford, Calhoun Co., Mich.

Pvt William Ozias Wells
Cmp 'A' 25th Mich. Inf. Regt.,  1862
Pvt. William Ozias Wells, 1862
Co A, 25th Mich Vol Inf Regt

Table of Contents

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Recent Additions to these Pages

*   I have added 15 new letters that had been in Preston Wells' possession. I have given them the suffix of '_pw' in the this Index and a direct path to all by following the next pw link at the end of each pw letter
-->   Go to first pw letter

*   In order to read all the news from the farm straight through I have also added a similar path to all the letters originating at Eckford, Just follow the next eck link at the end of each eck letter
-->   Go to first eck letter

Questions or comments, send me an email...
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The Cast of Characters:

[correspodents are identified by their intials]
  • wow:   Willie, Wm Ozias Wells, our Hero
  • Charley:   a cousin & comrade serving with Willie,
    son of father's uncle, Green Wells
  • Hiram Blake and Cicero Kenedey
  • hp:   Henry Patton, a comrade serving in the 11th Mich Inf.
  • eck:   the farm at Eckford, Mich.
    • www:   Wm W Wells, father
    • mbw:   Martha B Wells, mother
    • Paul:   Paul Henry Wells, brother, died Oct 1,1861 3½yrs old
    • jcw:   John M Clark Wells, brother, died 3/20/1863 (16yr 4mo 12d)
    • Ida:   Martha Ida Almyra,sister
    • Sady:   Sadie Ada Phidelia, sister
  • Silvia:   an aunt, wife of Green, neé Bitely
  • Grandma:   Mary Kennedy Wells, mother of www
  • er:   Elizabeth Roberts, an aunt
  • eb:   Emma Blodgett, a cousin

Index to the letters, 1862, 1863, 1864





Index to the Letters

This first letter is from William Wallice Wells to his wife Martha B. They are Wm O Wells' parents.
May 28,1854/ www, Chicago
"Dirt and Dutchmen for Chicago"
a country plug's view of Chicago in 1854
The year 1862; Index to the letters, 1863, 1864, Top of Page
On the 22 Sept 1862 the 25th Michigan Infantry Regiment was mustered into service at Kalamazoo, Mich. with Colonel Orlando H. Moore in command. On Aug 7, 1862 Wm enrolled in Co.A, at Homer and was mustered in on Sep 11, 1862 at Kalamazoo

Date/yr Author, pw   the Author code is explained at cast of characters
                                a pw indicates a Preston Wells letter

      (access facsimile of original from margin thumbnails)

Sep 2/62 wow, Kalamazoo
"...lying on a pile of straw to wright"
Sep 25/62 wow
"Hospital...sick with the Mumps"
On the 29th of September 1862 the regiment moved from Kalamazoo under orders to report to Louisville, Ky. It mustered 896 officers and men.
battleOct 10/62 wow, Camp Moor
The First Engagement and the killing of a hog
Oct 18/62 er, Olive Branch, Ohio
from Aunt Elizabeth - family news and advice
"be a good boy ... if you get sick come to Cincinnati"
Oct 24/62 wow, pw
no "letter from you sence I left Camp Kalamazoo and I have rote you five"
Oct 30/62 wow, pw
"I wish I had one of your cows to make butter"
Nov 1/ wow, Camp Fewet
To Brother John
Nov 4/ wow
"...home before spring"
Nov 5/ eck, pw
Life on the Farm & a Tale of Pat Hays the Irishman
Nov 11/ wow
Camp near General Buckners Plantation
Nov 20-21/ www, pw
War & Farm News from the Home Front
a new School House & School Marm
Nov 21/ wow, pw
"a great many ... sick in the Hospital;
the boys has gone to bury Orlando Crocker"
Nov 29/62 wow
"...raw pork and dry bread..."
Dec 1/62 eck
"...pretty tight times here"
Dec 7/62 er
" a good boy"
On December the 8th., the 25th was ordered to Munfordsville, Ky where it became engaged in a skirmish with the Confederates on the 27th.
Dec 8/62 wow
Marching Orders
Dec 10/62 wow, Louisville
Separated from the Regiment
Dec 11?/? wow
a box of things rety to send & a Rice Pudding Request
Dec 13/ wow, pw
"Old Morgan is within about 15 miles...
the boys ar all eager to hav the old chap make his appearance"
Dec 16/62 wow
Arrival at Mumfordsville
Dec? 20? /62 wow, pw, part of a letter
"when a man is Hospital;
beaf tea, stamps and gloves"




      The year 1863; Index to the letters, 1862, 1864, Top of Page

Date/yr Author, pw   the Author code is explained at cast of characters
                                a pw indicates a Preston Wells letter

      (access facsimile of original from margin thumbnails)

Jan 6/63 wow, Mumfordsville
meayzles, marching orders and desertion
Jan 7/63 wow
"Cicero is prety hard up..."
On January 8th., the 25th moved to Bowling Green, Ky where it was employed on provost and picket duty and guarding trains.
Jan 15/63 wow, Bowling Green
Well Again, at Bowling Green
Jan 16/63 wow
Bowling green, "..a very prety town"
Jan 20/63 wow
"this is a very unhealthy plase, ...
only 10 men fit for duty"
Jan 28/63 wow
"the company is all sick" in a vey bad Camp
Feb 8/63 eb
From Cousin Emma Blodgett
Feb 10/63 eck
A Mother's Instructions
Feb 10/63 www
A Note from WWW at the Homer P.O.
Feb 16/63 eck
"...but Willie you must not indulge in such gloomy fancys"
Feb 18/63 eck, pw
Cicero he has got back, boxed up in a coffin
Feb 23/63 mbw, pw
Tell Bugbee that he must release you... from Pa
Oh Willie how I miss you... M
Feb 24/63 wow
"...aneious to have a fight"
Feb 27/63 eck
"...all that deserts now is to be shot"
battleFeb 28/63 hp, Murfreesboro Tenn
The battle of Stone River
Mar 10/63 wow
" Mr Bugbee ...he is a Country Plug him self"
On March 26th., the 25th proceeded to Lebanon, taking part with the troops of General Manson, in pursuit of the Confederates under General Pegram.
Mar 22/63 wow, pw
I have got a box of things redy to send to you
Mar 27/63 wow
"Is it Posible...Brother Johney is Dead"
Mar 22 eb, pw
all well with the exception of your brother John
Mar 28/63 wow
"it dose not seam so that John is dead"
Apr 1/63 er, pw
the sad news of the death of your dear brother
On April 3rd., the 25th returned to Lebanon, thence proceeded to Louisville, where it was assigned provost and guard duty.
Apr 12/63 eck
" the midst of life we are in death"
Apr 18/63 eb, pw
The Life of a Fifteen Year Old Girl Back Home
May 3/63 www, pw
The death of Will's grandfather John Clark
May 6/63 www
Patrick Taffy and the Jar of Whisky
June the 10th., five companies D,E,F,I&K under the command of Colonel Moore, marched to Green River Bridge, near Columbia, where they gallantly repulsed thousands under Morgan. Wm with Co. A remained behind.
battleJun 17/ wow
"the leut... got mortley wounded but we did not lose a man"
Jul 21/63 www, pw
News of War & Home with a Bit of Humor
"more musquetoes here ... then you could put into your Haversack..."
Aug 16/63 wow
"Ida...glad to here from you"
Sep 6/63 wow
"...sick with the remitten fever"
The Regiment was reunited at Lebanon, then marched with the 1st. Brigade,1st.Division of the 23rd. Corp over the mountains into Eastern Tennesse, camping at Louden,TN on October 31st.

Longstreet was sent to invade East Tennessee and capture Knoxville. Ambrose Burnside commanded the defending Federal forces.

On November 9,1863, under the command of Captain Demarest, the 25th Regiment participated in the defence of Kingston,

Nov 15/63 wow
hospital again, Knoxville
On 11/29 Longstreet's expedition ended with a failed, bloody attempt to storm Burnside's fortifications at Knoxville.

On December 4th Longstreet on the approach of Sherman's columns began a slow withdrawal northeastward toward the Virginia border. Sherman arrived in Knoxville on the 6th of December expecting to find a starved garrison. Instead he was Burnside's guest at a turkey dinner served with silver, linen, and all the niceties of home.

Nov 6/63 wow, pw, Camp Near Loudon Tenn
"now we have quarter[s] rations and
the bread we have to bak ouselves"
Dec 12/63 wow
"...a going on after Longstreet"
Dec 22/63 wow
" reenlistment for this child"




      The year 1864; Index to the letters, 1862, 1863, Top of Page
on to Mossy Creek, where the 25th was engaged,

Date/yr Author, pw   the Author code is explained at cast of characters
                                a pw indicates a Preston Wells letter

      (access facsimile of original from margin thumbnails)

battleJan 14/64 wow, Mossey Creek Sta
" of our boys died"
back to Knoxville vacinity... arriving there on the 21st of January
Jan 30/64 wow, Knoxville
"a forageing" we will go, a list of prices,
and the "Reble Red White and Blue" for Ida
Feb 27/64 wow, Strawbery Plains
marching orders for Richmond ... Frank Chase reduced to the ranks
Bugbee trying to resign
Feb 28/64 wow
Yankee Tricks
Mar 16/64 wow/ Lebanon
Bugby at the Company, the Rebs at Russelville
Apr 11/64 wow, Mossy Creek, East Tenn
concerning the weather, Bugbee, the death of Sylvester Mumbrue
and the lack of stamps
Apr 18/64 wow
a new company commander, the cost of a photograph
Apr 23/64 wow
a good dinner, fishing
Wm suffers "a permanent injury of the spine caused by being crushed on the cars [a train accident] on the 25th day of April 1864 while advancing on Knoxville Tenn". -- Otis Hoyt 30th Regt, Wis Vol, Post Surgeon

On May 4th, the re-equipped regiment moves west to Georgia with Sherman leaving Wm to finish the war in hospitals.




edited by Peter J Wait, 11/4/2003
copyright © 2003, by Peter J Wait,