O. M. (Orlando Metcalfe) Poe Papers,   1853, 1878, and undated
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Collection Scope and Content Note

Poe’s papers document his military schooling and Civil War work. Correspondence, orders, reports, muster rolls, and maps document both his engineering work and that of the engineers and mechanics he commanded. Correspondence and reports from November and December 1864 and early 1865 detail the work of Poe’s engineers in the destruction of Atlanta and Savannah, Georgia, which they razed and destroyed on General William T. Sherman’s orders. Poe invented a battering ram on a chain attached to a large sawhorse with which the army destroyed brick buildings. Poe’s engineers were also responsible for the wholesale destruction of local railroads and buildings, which were used by Confederates to fight Union forces. His men also built fortifications. There are numerous correspondence (reports) and morning reports from the First Regiment Michigan Engineers and Mechanics, and muster rolls of the Engineer Battalion Twenty-third Army Corps. The collection has a set of item-level index cards. Also, part of the Correspondence, March-December 1863, has been microfilmed (See Micro Accession # 429).

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