Wednesday, January 23, 2008

A (Civil War) Walk to Remember...

Following up on my post from a couple of weeks ago regarding soldier correspondence in my own collection, I want to share an excerpt from a 1918 letter that has a wonderful Civil War connection...It was written on December 7, 1918, by a WWI soldier - "Mac" - who had been inducted into the 125th Engineers in late October 1918, just before the war ended. Written from Camp Forrest, Georgia, "Mac" writes his friend "Tate" about taking advantage of his proximity to some Civil War battlefields:

"I have been over some famous battlefields and places since coming here. Was down to Chattanooga, Tenn and upon Lookout Mt one Sunday where one can see 7 states, four battlefields, and where the only battle was fought "above the clouds," previous to the the times of aeroplanes.

"We are camped in Chickamauga Park and Missionary Ridge is very near. I have a pass for tomorrow and intend to go over Chickamauga and see what I can learn of Civil War history."

Now that's pretty cool.


dw said...


That's really fascinating. It's amazing to think that your letter writer was walking that battlefield only 28 years after the park was formed, and after the veterans themselves camped there to determine where their monuments should go.

You've inspired me to pull out my grandfather's WWI letters, which I've been meaning to transcribe.


Jim Schmidt said...


Thanks so much for the kind reply...I though the WWI/Civil War connection was pretty cool...hadn't thought of the little time that had passed since the park had been formed...was also intrigued by the allusion to a major change in war technology ("aeroplanes")

I might send a copy to the park...they might get a kick out of it.

I'm glad I inspired you!