Civil War Collection

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Civil War Collection
1862-02-09 letter from Meeker Griffin to his father - Image Source

Collection Facts


Historical Context

Approximately 2.75 million soldiers in total fought in the Civil War. Each of these soldiers had family, loved ones, and friends back home anxiously awaiting their return. Huguenot street has letters detailing the experiences of three Ulster County soldiers during the war, which help to shed light on the individual stories behind the statistics. These soldiers include:

Meeker Griffin, who mustered in Company C of the 56th Regiment of the New York Veteran Volunteer Infantry in 1861 and later transferred to the Navy on December 31, 1863.

Johannes Lefevre, who fought in the 156th New York Volunteer Army. Johannes fought in many battles, including the famous Battle of Winchester. Although he was severally wounded at the Battle of Cedar Creek, doctors assured his family that he would recover shortly. Tragically, however, Johannes succumbed to gangrene in a Virginia hospital far from his family back home in New Paltz.

James T. Thitchener, who enlisted on August 16th 1862 and was mustered to position of Private on September 5th 1862 at the age of 25. He is known to have fought in the battle of Chancellorsville, and was maimed in the battle of Gettysburg, on July 2nd 1863, less than one year after enlisting. He survived his injuries, but died relatively young at the age of 36 on August 31st 1872.

Scope of Collection

This collection includes letters to and from Meeker G. Griffin, Jacob Hasbrouck, Johannes Lefevre, and James T. Thitchener during the Civil War. These letters reveal the experiences they each had serving as Union soldiers during the war. The collection also contains photographs, records, and ephemera related to these soldiers, as well as others who served.

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