Manuscripts Division
William L. Clements Library
University of Michigan

Finding aid for
Davis E. Castle Journals, 1864-1865

James S. Schoff Civil War Collection

Finding aid created by
Manuscript Division Staff

Summary Information
Title: Davis E. Castle journals
Creator: Castle, Davis E., b. 1835
Inclusive dates: 1864-1865
Extent: 2 volumes
Davis Castle's journals provide information on his service in the Signal Corps of the Army of the Potomac.
Language: The material is in English
Repository: William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan
909 S. University Ave.
The University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1190
Phone: 734-764-2347
Web Site:

Access and Use
Acquisition Information:

1976. M-1730.

Access Restrictions:

The collection is open for research.


Copyright status is unknown.

Preferred Citation:

Davis E. Castle Journals, James S. Schoff Civil War Collection, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan


Castle, Davis E., b. 1835

Rank : Captain and Acting Signal Officer

Regiment : United States. Army of the Potomac--Signal Corps

Service : 1861 July 29-1865?

Davis E. Castle received a commission in the 19th Indiana Infantry at the start of the Civil War, and served with that regiment in Virginia from 1861 through 1863. Castle was commended by his superiors several times, and perhaps as a result, was rewarded with a commission as Acting Signal Officer in the Army of the Potomac in 1864.

Collection Scope and Content Note

Davis Castle's journal provides limited information on his service in the Signal Corps of the Army of the Potomac. The document is made up of brief entries, at times illegible handwriting, and empty pages. Castle tended to report second hand information rather than his own experiences.

On the first "Memoranda" page following December 31, 1865, is a list of births in Davis Castle's immediate family. The pages dated November 1, 1864 and August 25, 1865 contain coded passages.

Subject Terms

    • Atlanta Campaign, 1864.
    • Burnside, Ambrose Everett, 1824-1881.
    • Butler, Benjamin F. (Benjamin Franklin), 1818-1893.
    • Cedar Creek, Battle of, Va., 1864.
    • Ciphers.
    • Constitutional amendments--United States.
    • Draft.
    • Food.
    • Foote, Henry 1804-1880.
    • Grant, Ulysses S. (Ulysses Simpson), 1822-1885.
    • Libraries.
    • Lincoln, Abraham 1809-1865--Assassination.
    • Lincoln, Abraham 1809-1865--Inauguration.
    • Military deserters--United States.
    • Military reconnaissance.
    • Murder.
    • Mutiny.
    • New Year.
    • Plymouth (N.C.)
    • Presidents--United States--Election--1864.
    • Railroads.
    • Sheridan, Philip Henry, 1831-1888.
    • Sherman, William T. (William Tecumseh), 1820-1891.
    • Slaves--Emancipation--Maryland.
    • Smithsonian Institution.
    • United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Casualties.
    • United States. Army--Leaves and furloughs.
    • United States. Navy.
    • Vallandingham, Clement Laird, 1820-1871.
    • Winchester, 3rd Battle of, Winchester, Va., 1864.
    Genre Terms:
    • Diaries.
    Contents List
    Container / Location Title
    Volume   1  
    Davis E. Castle journal,  1864 January 1-1865 April 21 [series]
     January 1864
    New Years Day sobriety
    Rebel estates confiscated
    Prisoner exchange
    Beast Ben Butler
    N.C. political upheavals
     February 1864
    Library of Congress research
     March 1864
    Trains behind schedule
    Colonel's cruel death
    View of enemy position
    Consolidation of troops
     April 1864
    Horse race
    Surrender of Plymouth
    Burnside's movements
     May 1864-August 1864
    [May through Aug contains a daily log of the Army of the Potomac's campaigns, entries being written in Culpepper Courthouse, Leary's House, Bethesda Church, and Avery's House, Va. These entries have not been separately described]
     September 1864
    Atlanta falls
     1864 election
    Furlough to Massachusetts
    3rd Battle of Winchester
     October 1864
    Battle of Cedar Creek
     November 1864
    Maryland emancipation
     1864 election
     January 1865
    Arrest of Senator Foote
    Crumbling Confederacy
    Smithsonian Institution
    Gen. Grant's new home
    Murder in Treasury Building
    14th Amendment
     February 1865
     March 1865
    14th Amendment ratification
    Inauguration of Lincoln
    Sheridan's victories
    Sherman's progress
     April 1865
    Lee surrenders
    Lincoln's death and funeral
    Assassination attempts on Cabinet members