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Robert W. Bennett letters, 1861-1863.

Book Cover
Creator: Bennett, Robert W.
Topics: Soldiers - Indiana - Correspondence. | Soldiers' writings, American. | Manuscripts, American. | United States. Army. Indiana Infantry Regiment, 7th (1861-1864). Company D - Military life. | Bennett, Robert W. (Robert William), 1844-1864 - Correspondence.
Regions: United States - History - Civil War, 1861-1865 - Sources. | United States - History - Civil War, 1861-1865 - Personal narratives. | United States - History - Civil War, 1861-1865 - Participation, African American. | Indiana - History - Civil War, 1861-1865 - Sources. | Kentucky - History - Civil War, 1861-1865 - Sources. | Tennessee - History - Civil War, 1861-1865 - Sources. | Boone County (Ind.) - Genealogy.
Genres: Correspondence - 1861-1863. | Manuscripts (documents) - United States - 1861-1863.
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000 06041ctc a2200553Ii 4500
001 17912163
005 20181003203919.0
008 180910i18611863xxu 000 0 eng d
035 |a(OCoLC)on1051239447
035 |a(NBYdb)1008649
040 |aIBV|beng|erda|edacs|cIBV|dNBYdb
043 |an-us---|an-us-in|an-us-ky|an-us-tn
049 |aIBVC|larclr
099 |aMidwest|aMS|aBennettRW
100 1 |aBennett, Robert W.|q(Robert William),|d1844-1864,|ecreator.
245 10|aRobert W. Bennett letters,|f1861-1863.
264 0|c1861-1863.
300 |a0.2 linear feet (1 box)
336 |atext|btxt|2rdacontent
337 |aunmediated|bn|2rdamedia
338 |asheet|bnb|2rdacarrier
351 |bArranged chronologically.
520 2 |aRobert W. Bennett's correspondence from August 15, 1861 through December 12, 1863, written to his father, mother and sisters, as well as two letters addressed to Bennett from his cousins Nicholas and William, along with one letter written to Bennett's father from another soldier in Company D.|bCorrespondence consists of two identical sets of typed transcriptions (no originals). The bulk of the letters are addressed to Bennett's father and contain descriptions of camp life, Bennett's impressions of "Dixie," and his actions with the regiment. The letters to his mother are similar but much briefer, and those to his sisters Martha ("Mat") and Mary focus on home life. Among his tasks as a soldier, Bennett writes often about foraging, confiscating local property (such as horses, food and tobacco), and pillaging local crops. In a Feb. 12, 1863 letter, he writes: "We have quit garden [guarding] rebel property and take what we want of it." Starting in March 1863, the 72nd Indiana became a mounted regiment. Bennett writes several times about the company's horses and his preference for riding scout missions over staying in camp. In a November 1863 letter Bennett notes the great number of black soldiers enlisting in the army. Bennett's impressions of the southern landscape are generally bleak, and he occasionally notes the effect of Union pillaging on the environment. Matters of hygiene come up often, including water supply, disposal of dead horses, and the prevalence of "graybacks" or body lice. Several letters refer to Northern "sympathizers" for the Confederacy, and one describes an uncle who has ""uren [turned] traitor to his country." Another anecdote involves a deserter who was shaved, branded with a letter "D" on his face, and drummed out of the regiment. The letters written in December 1863 contain the longest descriptions of battle, specifically the Union defeat at the Battle of Hartsville; in a letter dated December 12, 1863 Bennett describes his work on burial detail after the battle. Bennett talks about several Boone County soldiers serving with the 72nd Indiana, most often Lt. Lewis B. Garrett and Pvt. John M. Fall. Also mentioned are Pvts. Joseph M. Handlen, Morgan C. Frazier, George Flinn, and John Carter, along with Lt. Bob M. Sims and Capt. Arius U. Craven. All survived the war except for Carter, who died at Murfreesboro in April 1863. The five letters from August 15, 1861 through September 9, 1861 might be misdated, although the transcription is probably correct. Bennett's regiment was not mustered until August 1862, and the datelines of the letters (Indianapolis, Camp Lucy Carson, Lebanon) correspond to where the regiment was in 1862, not 1861. If the five letters were written in 1862, the collection likely begins with the letter dated November 6, 1861 and sent to Bennett from his cousin William. The transcription tries to retain the form of the originals. No punctuation or capitalization has been added. Where the original letter bore a stamp or insignia, it is described.
524 |aRobert W. Bennett Letters, The Newberry Library, Chicago.
545 0 |aCivil War soldier, a private in the 72nd Indiana Mounted Infantry, Company D.|bRobert William Bennett, son of Henry I. and Sarah Bennett, was a farmer from Boone County, Indiana. He enrolled as a private at age 18 on July 21, 1862 and was mustered into the Union Army at Indianapolis on August 16, 1862. He traveled with the 72nd Indiana through Kentucky and Tennessee, during which time the regiment became a mounted unit. He was captured at Westpoint, MS, on February 21, 1864. He died of scorbutus (scurvy) at Andersonville prison in Georgia on October 27, 1864. The inventory of his effects was signed by Captain A.U. Cravens at Nashville, Tennessee, on June 15, 1865.
555 0 |aInventory available online;|cfolder level control.
561 |aForms part of the Midwest Manuscript Collection at the Newberry Library.
600 10|aBennett, Robert W.|q(Robert William),|d1844-1864|vCorrespondence.
610 10|aUnited States.|bArmy.|bIndiana Infantry Regiment, 7th (1861-1864).|bCompany D|xMilitary life.
650 0|aSoldiers|zIndiana|vCorrespondence.
650 0|aSoldiers' writings, American.
650 0|aManuscripts, American.
651 0|aUnited States|xHistory|yCivil War, 1861-1865|vSources.
651 0|aUnited States|xHistory|yCivil War, 1861-1865|vPersonal narratives.
651 0|aUnited States|xHistory|yCivil War, 1861-1865|xParticipation, African American.
651 0|aIndiana|xHistory|yCivil War, 1861-1865|vSources.
651 0|aKentucky|xHistory|yCivil War, 1861-1865|vSources.
651 0|aTennessee|xHistory|yCivil War, 1861-1865|vSources.
651 0|aBoone County (Ind.)|vGenealogy.
655 7|aCorrespondence|y1861-1863.|2aat
655 7|aManuscripts (documents)|zUnited States|y1861-1863.|2aat
691 |aUnited States|y1861-1863|vManuscripts.
710 2 |aMidwest Manuscript Collection (Newberry Library)
710 2 |aNewberry Library.|kManuscript.|nMidwest MS BennettRW.
852 8 |bsc,midwms|hMidwest|iMS|iBennettRW|t1
856 42|uhttps://mms.newberry.org/xml/xml_files/BennettRW.xml|yFinding aid
910 |aGift 2014 jlg
947 |aMARS|a201801002
994 |aC0|bIBV

Staff View for: Robert W. Bennett letters