Manuscripts Division
William L. Clements Library
University of Michigan

Finding aid for
Lewis Dalton Papers, 1856-1904

James S. Schoff Civil War Collection

Finding aid created by
Philip Heslip, September 2009

Summary Information
Title: Lewis Dalton papers
Creator: Dalton, Phoebe P. and Dalton, Lewis, d. 1863
Inclusive dates: 1856-1904
Bulk dates: 1862-1863
Extent: 19 items
Abstract:
This collection contains 19 items, most of which are letters from Lewis Dalton, who volunteered for the 8th Kentucky Infantry (Union), to his wife Phoebe, from 1862 until he died in 1863. In particular, Dalton described his regiment’s march across the Cumberland Mountains, where they routed rebels from MacMinnville and Pikesville, and the start of the Battle at Stone River.

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:

1988. M-2412.

Access Restrictions:

The collection is open for research.

Copyright:

Copyright status is unknown

Processing Information:

Cataloging funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the "We the People" project.

Preferred Citation:

Lewis Dalton papers, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan


Arrangement

This collection is organized chronologically.


Biography

Lewis Dalton (born c.1841) volunteered for the 8th Kentucky Infantry (Union) and served as a private in company D during the Civil War. This unit saw action at both Chickamauga and Chattanooga, among other places.

He mustered in at Camp Lebanon, Kentucky, and served successively at War Trace, Tennessee (letters of May-June 1862), near Nashville (December 1862), and at Murfreesboro, Tennessee (April-May, 1863). Dalton's first military action came in a rout of rebel forces at McMinnville and Pikesville, Tennessee, in late 1862, and was followed by several fairly small skirmishes near Nashville (November 1862), and Murfreesboro (April 1863). Dalton was wounded in the arm in January 1863, and was placed on the sick list in April 1863. He died some time after May 1863.

Phoebe Sparks as born in 1835 and lived into the 20th century. She married Lewis Dalton shortly before the war.


Collection Scope and Content Note

This collection contains 19 items, most of which are letters from Lewis Dalton to his wife Phoebe, from 1862 until he died in 1863. Dalton wrote from camps in Lebanon, Kentucky (January-February 1862); Wartrace, Tennessee (May-June 1862); east of Nashville, Tennessee (November 1862); and Murfreesboro, Tennessee (April-May, 1863). He described sickness in his regiment and his own health issues; preparations for engagements with the enemy, including marching, drills, and picket duty; and spending money on food or going for days with little to eat. In June of 1862, Dalton described his regiment’s march across the Cumberland Mountains, where they routed rebels from MacMinnville and Pikesville. At this time, he expected the war to last no more than 4 or 5 more months. In a fragment of a letter, likely from early 1863, Dalton described the start of the Battle at Stone River or Murfreesboro. In April and May 1863, Dalton was sick and was excused from duty, and spent time in both a field hospital and a convalescence camp. In many of the letters, he discussed sending Phoebe money and pled with her to write more often. He often asked her if his friends from Kentucky were enlisting.

In 1863, Phoebe received a letter from Lewis's mother, Rebecca Dalton, who lived in Virginia; she had just heard that her son was married and hoped to see both of them. In 1889, Phoebe received a letter from George E. Lemon, a Washington lawyer, who requested an affidavit concerning Lewis Dalton's death. The final letter in the collection, dated 1903, is from Phoebe to the Department of the Interior, asking for an increase in pension pay.

The earliest letter is from Solomon Sparks (likely a close relative of Phoebe) to his family in Carter County, Kentucky, 1856. He discussed family illness, the birth of a son, and was considering moving to Illinois.

Subject Terms

    Subjects:
    • Pensions--United States.
    • Stones River, Battle of, Murfreesboro, Tenn., 1862-1863.
    • United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865.
    • United States. Army. Kentucky Infantry Regiment, 8th (1862-1864)
    Contributors:
    • Lemon, George E.
    • Sparks, Solomon.
    Genre Terms:
    • Letters (correspondence)
    Contents List
       Container / Location    Title
    Box   41, Schoff Civil War Collection  
    Correspondence [series]:
    Folder   1  
    Solomon Sparks to Sparks Family,   July 28, 1856
    Folder   2  
    Lewis Dalton to Phoebe P. Dalton,   January 7, 1862
    Folder   3  
    Lewis Dalton to Phoebe P. Dalton,   February 27, 1862
    Folder   4  
    Lewis Dalton to Phoebe P. Dalton,   May 16, 1862
    Folder   5  
    Lewis Dalton to Phoebe P. Dalton,   June 22, 1862
    Folder   6  
    Lewis Dalton to Phoebe P. Dalton,   June 27, 1862
    Folder   7  
    Lewis Dalton to Mary Masterson,   June 27, 1862
    Folder   8  
    Lewis Dalton to Phoebe P. Dalton,   November 22, 1862
    Folder   9  
    Rebecca Dalton to Lewis Dalton and Phoebe P. Dalton,   December 20, 1862
    Folder   10  
    Lewis Dalton, [ January 1863]
    Folder   11  
    Lewis Dalton to Phoebe P. Dalton,   April 1, 1863
    Folder   12  
    Lewis Dalton to Phoebe P. Dalton,   April 12, 1863
    Folder   13  
    Lewis Dalton to Phoebe P. Dalton,   April 20, 1863
    Folder   14  
    Lewis Dalton to Phoebe P. Dalton,   April 27, 1863
    Folder   15  
    Lewis Dalton to Phoebe P. Dalton,   May 2, 1863
    Folder   16  
    Lewis Dalton to Phoebe P. Dalton,   May 17, 1863
    Folder   17  
    Lewis Dalton to Phoebe P. Dalton,   May 24, 1863
    Folder   18  
    George E. Lemon to Phoebe P. Dalton,   April 26, 1889
    Folder   19  
    Phoebe P. Dalton to U.S. Department of the Interior,   September 19, 1904
    Additional Descriptive Data
    Related Materials

    The following items relate to the 8th Kentucky Infantry Regiment: