Manuscripts Division
William L. Clements Library
University of Michigan

Finding aid for
William C. Jones Papers, 1862-1863

James S. Schoff Civil War Collection

Finding aid created by
Rob S. Cox, March 1997

Summary Information
Title: William C. Jones papers
Creator: Jones, William C., b. ca. 1844
Inclusive dates: 1862-1863
Extent: 48 items
Abstract:
William Jones' Civil War correspondence provides a thorough documentation of one young recruit's service in the 38th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment. A literate and entertaining writer, Jones' letters include comments on his superiors, his religious views, and secessionists and the southern population.

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: www.clements.umich.edu


Access and Use
Acquisition Information:

1986. M-2279.

Access Restrictions:

The collection is open to research.

Copyright:

Copyright status is unknown.

Alternate Format:

The William C. Jones papers have been microfilmed.

Preferred Citation:

William C. Jones papers, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan


Biography

Jones, William C., b. ca. 1844

Rank : Private

Regiment : 38th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment. Co. A (1862-1865)

Service : 1862 July 28-1863 July 4

William C. Jones, an 18 year old clerk from Cambridge, Mass., enlisted in Co. A. of the 38th Massachusetts Volunteers during the summer of 1862. The best of intentions, however, did not keep him in the army for long, for less than a year later, he was discharged after contracting a strength-sapping illness. His age may have played a minor role in his discharge, as his superiors apparently considered him too young to bear the full duties of an infantryman.

During Jones' brief enlistment, he saw a good deal of the war zone, if not of action. At about the end of August, 1862, the 38th Massachusetts Infantry was ordered to Baltimore, and they remained in Maryland until November, when they were assigned to join Banks' expedition to Louisiana. Boarding the S.S. Baltic , the regiment arrived at Ship Island on December 13th, and proceeded to Carrollton, La., on New Years day, and to Baton Rouge in March. At about the same time that the regiment was experiencing its first action during the Bayou Teche expedition in the first week of April, Jones fell out of the ranks, too weak to bear arms. He received his discharge on July 4.


Collection Scope and Content Note

William C. Jones' Civil War correspondence provides a thorough documentation of one young recruit's uneventful service in the 38th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment. Having taken ill just as his regiment entered into its first action during the Vicksburg Campaign, Jones' letters -- all addressed to his mother -- include no battle accounts and no stories of confrontations with the enemy. They are, however, a fine resource for examining the routine of army life, from the camps outside Baltimore to steamer travel on the Mississippi to camp life in Louisiana. A literate and entertaining writer, Jones' letters include comments on his superiors, his religious views, and secessionists and the southern population.

The collection contains two letters addressed to Jones's mother, one from the Capt. J. P. Richardson (Co. A), and the other from Walter W. Hammond, referred to as the "poet of Cambridge." Both letters reassure Mrs. Jones of her boy's well-being.

Subject Terms

    Subjects:
    • United States. Army. Massachusetts Infantry Regiment, 38th (1862-1865)
    • United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Hospitals.
    • Military camps--Maryland.
    • Louisiana--Description and travel.
    • Mississippi River--Description and travel.
    • Draft--United States--History.
    Contents List
       Container / Location    Title
    Box   31 Schoff Civil War Soldiers' Letters  
    William C. Jones papers,  1862 August 07-1863 June 02 [series]:
    Additional Descriptive Data
    Partial Subject Index
    African American domestics.
    • 1862 September 8-15
    Baltimore (Md.)--Description and travel.
    • 1862 August 31
    Baton Rouge (La.)--Description and travel.
    • 1863 March 8
    Bounties, Military.
    • 1862 September 4
    Camps (Military)--Maryland.
    • 1862 August 31
    • 1862 September 4
    • 1862 September 20-October 10
    Carrollton, (La.)--Description and travel.
    • 1863 January 16
    Civilians--Maryland--Civil War, 1861-1865.
    • 1862 October 9
    • 1862 October 15
    Deserters, Military.
    • 1862 October 17
    Diarrhea.
    • 1862 September 15
    Draft.
    • 1862 August 7
    • 1862 August 31
    • 1862 September 4
    • 1863 March 24
    Drill and minor tactics.
    • 1862 September 8
    Emancipation Proclamation.
    • 1862 September 28
    Emory, William Hemsley, 1811-1887.
    • 1862 December 3
    • 1863 May 27
    Firearms--Accidents.
    • 1862 September 8-15
    Hampton Roads (Va.)--Description and travel.
    • 1862 November 25
    Louisiana--Description and travel.
    • 1863 March 3
    Mississippi River--Description and travel.
    • 1863 January 3
    Mutiny.
    • 1863 March 8
    New Brunswick (N.J.)--Description and travel.
    • 1862 August 31
    Picket duty--Maryland.
    • 1862 September 20
    Plantations--Maryland.
    • 1862 September 8-15
    Punishment.
    • 1862 October 17
    • 1863 January 16
    Shepley, George Foster, 1819-1878.
    • 1863 May 19
    Ship Island (La.)
    • 1862 December 21
    Soldiers--Alcohol use.
    • 1862 September 15
    Stealing.
    • 1862 October 17
    Steamboat travel.
    • 1862 November 15
    • 1862 November 20
    Sutlers.
    • 1862 September 4
    United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--African Americans.
    • 1862 September 8-15
    • 1862 November 25
    United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Hospitals.
    • 1863 May 7
    • 1863 May 11
    • 1863 May 19
    United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Songs and music.
    • 1862 September 24
    • 1862 September 28
    United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Women.
    • 1862 October 15
    • 1863 January 16
    United States--Politics and government--Civil War, 1861-1865.
    • 1863 January 4
    United States. Army--Chaplains.
    • 1862 October 8
    United States. Army--Officers.
    • 1863 January 16
    • 1863 January 28
    Vicksburg Campaign, 1863.
    • 1862 December 15
    • 1863 February 21
    • 1863 March 19
    Women--Confederate States of America.
    • 1863 January 16