The Civil War Letters of Patrick H. Sloan

My great-great grandfather, Patrick Henry Sloan, was an Irish immigrant who served with the Illinois 90th Infantry during the Civil War. He wrote many letters home to his wife, Jennie, describing his experiences in considerable detail.

The Illinois in the Civil War web site provides more information about the Illinois 90th Infantry.

Patrick survived the Civil War and passed away in 1906.  He is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

Some of Patrick's 19th century/military vocabulary may be new to students. As you read his letters, you can check for definitions from the glossary. Then, just click on your browser's "BACK" button to return to the letter.

Please send any questions or comments to: JuliaFulton@charter.net

December 23, 1862 Alive and well after heavy fighting near Holly Springs, Tennessee.
February 4, 1863 From LaGrange, Tennessee: food and fortifications.
February 23, 1863 Recovering from a fever after recent skirmishes.
March 12, 1863 From the swamps at Lafayette Station: a promise to send money soon.
April 4, 1863 Patrick's in a "fever heat of love" for his "Dear Jennie."
April 6th, 1863 Patrick sends a camp song.  He's anticipating action while officers resign.
April 21, 1863 Patrick is promoted to Wagon Master amidst snakes and other "varmin."
April 29, 1863 Patrick, promised a furlough, is "tickled at the idea of going home."
May 1, 1863 (excerpt/summary only)
June 14, 1863 From Haines Bluff, MississippióRear of Vicksburg.
June 19, 1863 From Sniders Bluff, Patrick tells Jennie to cheer up.
June 23, 1863 Preparing to fight Johnston's forces, desperate for drinkable water.
July 19, 1863 From Jackson, Mississippi after victory at Vicksburg.
July 31, 1863 At Camp Sherman, rear of Vicksburg, Patrick is taken ill again.
August 3, 1863 (excerpt/summary only) Anxious about comrades who went out to meet the enemy.
August 7, 1863 Patrick has sent home a Confederate general's coat.
August 9, 1863 In a "writing mania," Patrick describes hot weather and sick soldiers.
August 10, 1863 A beloved chaplain resigns due to ill health.
August 16, 1863 (excerpt/summary only) Patrick had been down with fever but was better.
August 23, 1863 "If I don't get a letter again from you soon I don't know what I will do"
August 27, 1863 Anxious for a letter from Jennie, Patrick has finally been paid.
September 15, 1863 Sickly and discouraged in Camp Sherman, but pleased to have heard from Jennie at last.
September 19, 1863 Feeling better after hearing from Jennie again.  Mentions review by Sherman.
September 23, 1863 "I am just after building a new domicile" from a confiscated wagon cover.
September 25, 1863 Preparing to move again.
October 10, 1863 Outside Memphis with a canteen full of whiskey.
October 25, 1863 Cold and rainy and preparing to move again.
December 17, 1863 Unflattering but amusing descriptions of the local yokels.
December 23, 1863 On the mend and eating well.  ?????
January 11, 1864 Scottsborough, Alabama
January 17, 1864 Camp near Steveson Alabama
January 22, 1864  
January 27 1864 Fackler Station  ("all personal")
January 31, 1864  
February 14, 1864  
February 17, 1864  
February 20, 1864  
February 27, 1864  
March 6, 1864  
March 9, 1864  
April 3, 1864  
April 12, 1864  
April 25, 1864  
April 26, 1864  
April 30, 1864  
June 7, 1864 Collierville, Tennessee
June 15, 1864 Field near Atlanta
June 29, 1864 Big Shantz, Georgia
June 30, 1864 Snyders Bluff, Mississippi
August 12, 1864 Near Atlanta
September 1, 1864 Marietta, Georgia
September 18, 1864 Eastpoint, Georgia
September 21, 1864  
September 29, 1864  
November 9, 1864 Convalescent Camp
November 19, 1864 Convalescent Camp
November 23, 1864  
November 28, 1864 Cleveland, Tennessee
December 4, 1864 (excerpt/summary only)
December 30, 1864 Scottsville, Alabama
February 15, 1865 Newbern, N. Carolina
March 11, 1865  
April 20, 1865 Near Raleigh, N. Carolina
May 25, 1865 District of Columbia