The Chesnut-Ewalt papers contain correspondence, documents, and a biographical sketch related to the family of Reverend Thomas Chesnut. The collection includes late 19th century correspondence by Chesnut's wife, Jane, to her children, as well as material documenting the Civil War service of William Ewalt, Chesnut's son-in-law.
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
The collection is open for research.
Copyright status is unknown
Cataloging funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC). This collection has been processed according to minimal processing procedures and may be revised, expanded, or updated in the future.
Chesnut-Ewalt Papers, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan
The collection is arranged into two series:
Series I: Chesnut papers
Series II: Ewalt papers
Each series is arranged chronologically.
Thomas Chesnut was born in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, in 1803. Shortly after his marriage to Jane Officer on October 5, 1828, the newly ordained Chesnut devoted his life to missionary work, which took the couple to Beallsville, Ohio. In 1856, the Chesnuts left Ohio for Sioux City, Iowa, where Thomas assisted in establishing that city's First Presbyterian Church. They left in 1861, after facing Indian trouble, and settled in Urbana, Illinois. Chesnut died on February 7, 1872.
Catherine Chesnutt, one of Thomas' children, married William Ewalt of Shelby, Ohio. Ewalt served in the 63rd Ohio Infantry Regiment and 163rd Ohio National Guard Regiment.
Collection Scope and Content Note
The Chesnut-Ewalt papers contain correspondence, documents, and a biographical sketch related to the family of Reverend Thomas Chesnut. The collection includes late-19th-century correspondence by Chesnut's wife, Jane, to her children, as well as material documenting the Civil War service of William Ewalt, Chesnut's son-in-law.
The Chesnut papers contain five items directly related to Thomas Chesnut and his family. An early letter addressed to Jane Chesnut and "Dear Children" displayed parental concern for their welfare, driven by particularly strong religious views (December 17, 1834). Jane wrote three letters to her children showing her concern for their welfare and providing news of acquaintances and of her daily life in Urbana, Illinois (December 31, 1867; May 11, 1875; September 29, 1876), as well as one including a detailed description of a wedding she attended (December 31, 1886). The final item in the series is a four-page biographical "Sketch of the Missionary life of Rev. T. M. Chesnut," about his life in Ohio, Iowa, and Illinois. The sketch mentions his marriage to Jane Officer, as well as his decision to become a missionary and to bring his "little family" along on his travels. The essay also details specific projects and successes during his time as a missionary. The anonymous essay, sent from Evanston, Illinois and composed after Chesnut's 1872 death, was originally addressed to his daughter, Kate A. Ewalt of Shelby, Ohio.
The Ewalt papers are comprised of the following items related to William Ewalt's Civil War military service:
A discharge certificate for private William Ewalt of Company E, 64th Ohio Infantry Regiment (December 28, 1862)
A discharge certificate for private William Ewalt of Company D, 163rd regiment, Ohio National Guard (September 10, 1864)
A certificate commemorating the honorable military service of William Ewalt (December 15, 1864)
Two pension certificates for William Ewalt (August 11, 1891 and July 29, 1913)
A typed letter certifying that Ewalt's certificate of discharge was returned to him, as it was not required for his pension claim (December 3, 1912)
Chesnut, Thomas M., 1803-1872.
Military pensions--United States--Civil War, 1861-1865.
United States. Army. Ohio Infantry Regiment, 63rd (1862-1865)
Container / Location
Box 43, Small Collections
Chesnut-Ewalt papers [series]
Chesnut papers [subseries]
December 17, 1834-
Ewalt papers [subseries]
December 8, 1862-July 29, 1913
Additional Descriptive Data
The Clements Library holds the following book about the 63rd Ohio Infantry Regiment: