Edwin Wright letters  1862-1865
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Collection Scope and Content Note

Thomas Turner, Jr., kept this 21-page journal while serving in the United States Army's 29th Infantry Regiment in New York, Vermont, and Québec during the War of 1812. He described battles, his regiment's movements, and other aspects of military life. The collection contains Tuner's original journal as well as a typed transcription with notes.

Turner began his journal on April 27, 1813, after receiving his commission in the 29th Infantry Regiment. He joined the regiment in Sandy Hill (now Hudson Falls), New York, in early May, and served in northern New York, northern Vermont, and Québec until November 1814. Turner recorded the regiment's movements and the locations of its encampments, and mentioned his encounters with acquaintances in the army. He noted occasions on which deserters were shot, often including details regarding their deaths, and reported on several duels within the regiment. On one occasion, Turner's regiment caught and executed a British spy. Turner participated in several battles and commented on military developments, such as the fighting around Fort Erie in the summer of 1814. Several entries pertain to General James Wilkinson, including Turner's transcription of Wilkinson's farewell address and entries about Wilkinson's court martial. In November 1814, Turner was ordered to New Burgh, New York, where he recruited soldiers. The final entry is dated March 1814, just after Wilkinson's acquittal.

A 19th-century manuscript copy of Thomas Turner's journal accompanies the original.

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