October 06, 2016 12:00 PM EDT Cincinnati


Michigan Civil War Letters, Many from Pvt. Charles H. Miles, 22nd MI Inf. Co. D, POW at Libby

Lot of 12.

Twenty-one-year-old Charles H. Miles enlisted in the army as a private on August 12, 1863. Two days later, he mustered into the 22nd MI Inf. Co. D. We left Lexington 2 weeks ago and chased the rebels from(?) the mountains to the crab orchard and there we had a fight and licked them like the devil…I come out of the fight all right Miles wrote to his parents (Danswill, April 3, 1863). Military life suited Miles and his superiors recognized his potential. Apparently his captain promoted him to ordnance sergeant and that another sergeant wanted him to be chief of his casson, but there is no official record of his promotions on the Civil War database (Lexington, KY, February 26, 1863).

Miles and the 22nd MI fought their way through the south at the Battle of Chattanooga and at Chickamauga. The enemy captured Miles at Chickamauga and interred him at Libby for over two years. Finally, on March 15, 1865 he was paroled and returned to the front. He finished his term of service and mustered out on July 10, 1865. Prison life had such an effect on Miles that he originated the Association of Ex-Prisoners of the Civil War. He and his wife organized and attended annual meetings with other POWs every year until his death in 1909.

Also included in the lot are eight more letters from Miles; the muster roll for the 13th MI Inf. from February 28th to April 30th 1862 signed by Captain Ezra Carpenter and Colonel M. Shoemaker; and a contract between William N. Nepew and Capt. George W. Lee agreeing that Nepew would deliver bundles of soft wood to the 5th MI Vol. Cavalry at Camp Banks, signed by both men on October 4, 1862.

The 5th MI participated in the battle of Gettysburg and the Wilderness. It was most famous for its leader, Brig. General George Custer, who helped the regiment earn its fierce fighting reputation.

The 13th MI also had an impressive service record and saw action at Corinth, Stone River, and Chickamauga. 



Typical folds and toning of the paper. 

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