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Eddy family papers, 1837-1921 (majority within 1861-1864)

0.6 linear feet (in 2 boxes) — 1 volume (in 1 box) — 196 MB

Residents of Plymouth, Michigan. Three Eddy brothers, Willard, William Hannahs, and Clark, served in the Michigan 2nd and 24th Michigan Volunteer Infantry Regiments in the Civil War. This collection contains family portraits (mostly tintypes, with a few daguerreotypes and ambrotypes as well), wartime correspondence among the Eddy siblings and parents (including several digital scans and transcriptions), family genealogical materials, and a family Bible.

This collection contains family portraits, genealogical material, correspondence among the Eddy siblings and parents, and a family Bible. The correspondence consists of approximately 120 letters, most of which were written during the American Civil War (1860-1865) between the three enlisted brothers, Willard, William and Clark, and their parents, Otis and Lucy. Three of the letters contain accounts of the Battle of Williamsburg (letter dated May 12, 1862), the First Battle of Fredricksburg (letter dated May 26, 1863), and the Second Battle of Fredricksburg (letter dated May 26, 1863). There are also digital scans of six of the letters and digital transcriptions of ten of them.

The family Bible is also included, and the loose leaf genealogical and family record materials that were once interleaved within it have been foldered separately for preservation reasons. There are also two official Union Army documents conferring promotions on Clark Eddy, one for the rank of corporal and the other for the rank of sergeant.

The collection also includes a box of family portraits taken using various early photographic methods. There are four 1/6th plate size portraits framed in “Union Cases,” two of which are tintypes and two of which are daguerreotypes. There are also two 1/9th plate size ambrotypes. The box also contains a leather-bound photograph album of fifteen later portraits of family members, as well as a small Maple Grove Candies box which holds five unframed and uncased tintypes.


Josephine Wakely papers, 1862-1868

22 items

The Josephine Wakely papers contain correspondence from several Civil War soldiers from Whiteford, Michigan, primarily describing battles, attitudes, and duties.

The Josephine Wakely papers contain 22 letters written to Wakely between 1862 and 1871. Six Union soldiers wrote seventeen of the letters during their Civil War service; they were likely Wakely's neighbors in Whiteford, Michigan.

Adam H. Crist, a corporal in the 15th Michigan Infantry, composed 10 of the letters in 1862 and 1863. In them, he described the aftermath of the Second Battle of Corinth (October 18, 1862), attacks by guerillas in Grand Junction, Tennessee (December 13, 1862), and taking horses from Southerners (December 27, 1863). Throughout his correspondence, Crist exhibited a dislike for military life, repeatedly stating that he did not blame anyone for getting out of the Army in any way he could. In several letters, Crist mentioned African Americans. On May 21, 1863, he observed that many in his regiment had taken roles as officers in "Negro regiments," while in another letter, he commented on the plight of soldiers: "they say we took the Negroes place & they took ours & it looks so to me for we are in bondage now while they are free." (July 16, 1863). In the same letter, he also discussed the superiority of western troops and wrote, "I never want to go unless Grant goes with us for I don’t want to fight under them Eastern generals."

Thomas Wakeley [sic] of the 8th Michigan Cavalry and George H. Rogers and Edward Keller of the 18th Michigan Infantry each wrote one letter to Josephine Wakely. In his letter of May 29, 1864, Thomas Wakeley described an assignment to tie a man to a tree as punishment. Rogers gave an account of washing clothes at Cumberland Hospital and expressed his appreciation for freckled Southern girls (February 15, 1865). From his location, Keller recounted seeing many steamboats burning aboard a gunboat on the Cumberland River (May 14, 1863).

Morris Cummings of the 24th Michigan Infantry and Thomas G. Spriggs of the 18th Michigan Infantry each contributed two letters. Cummings wrote from Camp Butler in Springfield, Illinois, and mentioned attending Abraham Lincoln's funeral (May 26, 1865), while Spriggs wrote from Huntsville, Alabama, concerning news and an upcoming prisoner-of-war exchange (February 19, 1865). Five letters postdate 1865. They primarily provide news about family members and mutual acquaintances, though one letter recounts a religious conversion experienced by its author (June 1, 1866).


Papers, 1835,1917, and undated

1 cubic foot (in 1 box, 1 Oversized folder)

The collection consists of correspondence between Parker and his friends during the Civil War, mostly Michigan men in Michigan units, and Parker's post-war business and Grand Army of the Republic correspondence.

About half of the papers consist of letters to Parker’s friends during the Civil War. In 1861, Charles C. Hopkins wrote of camping in Washington, Virginia, homesickness, and the climate and Chester Farrand wrote of crushing the Rebellion quickly.

In 1862, C.C. Hopkins wrote of fighting, the death of Chester Farrand, measles in camp, and mud; R.E. Trowbridge hoped the war would end soon; and George Hopkins wrote from a field hospital while Trowbridge wrote to Parker offering to help get Parker’s pay.

In 1863, George Hopkins wrote from the 17th Regiment, Michigan Infantry Camp located opposite Fredericksburg, about promotions and Henry P. Seymour wrote of his promotions in 27th Regiment, Michigan Infantry and Southern deserters. On April 5, 1863, Seymour reported the fall of Richmond. Oscar N. Castle described the 24th Regiment, Michigan Infantry’s actions at Fredericksburg. Henry Seymour, near Fairfax, Virginia, wrote of five months without pay, losing a commission, and measles.

In 1864, Frank Drake wrote from the U.S. gunboat, Undine, of the destruction of Paducah, skirmishes, and the Tennessee River. At the end of 1864, Henry Seymour wrote from Murfreesboro, Tennessee, of hard fights, prisoners, and losses.

In May 1865, Charles D. Smith wrote for help to be released from prison for desertion.

Also, there is an 1863 U.S. Army General Hospital Roll (Baltimore) which lists Parker.

The rest of the collection includes post-war business correspondence, 1866-1917; G.A.R. correspondence, 1888-1896; state laws concerning disabled veterans, 1883-1887; and the papers and photograph of Flemon Drake, 1835-1860, Parker’s father-in-law.

A letter press scrapbook, 1842, of Chester Stringham, a Detroit businessman, was used as a scrapbook by Parker. He used it for political science lecture clippings, 1868-1870. Lastly, there is an oversized folder with a list of men who served in Co. C of the 1st Regiment, Michigan, 5th District, another veterans group, in 1866.


Safford and Sunderland Family papers, 1826-1987 (majority within 1890-1940)

6.5 linear feet — 1 oversize folder

The Safford Sunderland papers trace several generations of a Southeastern Michigan family, showcasing everyday life and Michigan (as well as U.S.) history over the course of the first half of the Twentieth Century.

The Safford Sunderland Family collection consists of the papers of Gertrude Sunderland Safford, her husband Homer E. Safford, his sister Ada M. Safford, and of two of the Sunderland Saffords' daughters, Helen Safford Toohy and Mildred H. Safford. The papers also contain information on and materials from Gertrude Sunderland Safford's parents, Jabez T. Sunderland and Eliza Jane Read Sunderland; her siblings, Edson Read Sunderland and Florence Sunderland; and the Sunderland Saffords' other two children, Truman Sunderland Safford and Virginia Safford Arnold. Additionally, there is some material from and on Helen Safford Toohy's husband (Clifford M. Toohy) and daughters (Janet Toohy Ferguson and Phyllis Toohy). Finally, the collection contains Ada Murray Safford's extensive genealogical materials on the Murray and Safford families.

The papers are organized into six series arranged by family member: Photographs, Gertrude Sunderland Safford, Homer Erwin Safford, Ada Murray Safford, Mildred Hortense Safford, and Helen Safford Toohy.