Worline family Civil War correspondence
This collection is comprised of 14 holograph correspondence written during the Civil War and sent to Margaret Worline (1818-1900) and John Worline (1814-1890). The majority of the correspondence was written by John and Margaret's eldest son, Hugh Worline (1844-1864), a soldier in Company D, 121st Regiment, Ohio Volunteer Infantry. In his letters, Hugh Worline describes exhausting marches and asks his parent to send money and supplies such as socks, blankets, postage stamps, and food. He writes critically about abolitionists and secessionist sympathizers. He also expresses dismay about Union soldiers taking food and other provisions from farmers in Kentucky, and bitterly complains about "the way and how we air used by our Company oficers[sic]." After being captured sometime between May and October of 1863, he writes a brief note on October 21 from Libby Prison in Richmond, Virginia, in which he claims to be "well and in good chear[sic]." That was his last letter. He was eventually transferred to a prison camp in Danville, Virginia, where he died on January 17, 1864.
There is a note dated December 4, 1862 from H. Powell to David Tod, Governor of Ohio, attesting that the bearer, John Worline, is "a reliable loyal man, and deserving any assistance you can give him" to reach the 121st Regiment in order to "assist friends in the service." A letter dated February 8, 1863 from Hugh Worline suggests that father and son did not reunite, but were able to coordinate the exchange of packages. Additionally, there are two letters from John Worline's relatives in Somerset County, Pennsylvania; one from Edmund Good dated April 9, 1863 and the other from Ada Good dated May 3, 1863. Lastly, there is a letter dated December 21, 1863 from Harmon Wheeler to Margaret Worline. Harmon Wheeler was a neighbor just a few years older than Hugh Worline who also enlisted with Company D, 121st Regiment, Ohio Volunteer Infantry. Unlike Hugh Worline's letters, Wheeler's letter offers details about battles. He writes that after the Battle of Chickamauga, the rebels "cut our mens heads of and stuck them on the stumps and sticks [sic]." He vows revenge, adding "I think that them at ar at home had beter volenter and com out like men [sic]." Wheeler writes that his Regiment marched 300 miles in twenty-five days, and that "one quater of our solders was bear footed [sic]." Wheeler survived the war, mustering out in Washington D.C. in June of 1865.
The collection also contains papers from the seller, including some typed transcriptions of the original letters and a photocopied history of the 121st Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry.
- Creation: September 1862 - November 1863
- Worline, Hugh, 1844-1864 (Person)
Conditions Governing Access
This collection is open for research.
Conditions Governing Use
There are no restrictions on the use of this material except where previously copyrighted material is concerned. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain all permissions.
Biographical / Historical
Hugh Worline (1844-1862) was born in Marlboro, Ohio. He was the eldest child of parents John (1814-1890) and Margaret (1818-1900), who had seven more children between 1845 and 1863. John Worline was a farmer. Hugh Worline enlisted on August 14, 1862 with Company D of the 121st Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry. His Regiment fought in many battles, most notably in the Battle of Chickamauga (September 19-20, 1863) in southwestern Tennessee and northwestern Georgia. Worline was captured sometime between May and October of 1863 and taken to Libby Prison in Richmond, Virginia. He was eventually moved to a prison camp in Danville, Virginia, where he died on January 17, 1864. His body was buried at Marlboro Cemetery in Troy, Ohio.
.25 Linear Feet (one folder)
Language of Materials
This collection is comprised of 14 holograph correspondence written during the Civil War and sent primarily to Margaret Worline (1818-1900) and John Worline (1814-1890). The majority of the correspondence was written by Margaret's eldest son, Hugh Worline (1844-1864), a soldier in Company D, 121st Regiment, Ohio Volunteer Infantry.
This collection is arranged chronologically.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
This collection was purchased in 2019 from Johnson Rare Books and Archives in Covina, California.
- Finding Aid for the Worline family Civil War correspondence collection
- Wendy Gonaver
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- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
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