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LT: August 23, 1864 Henry F. Young (7th Wisconsin)

SOPO Editor’s Note: Captain Henry F. Young of the 7th Wisconsin wrote twenty letters while at the Siege of Petersburg from June to December 1864. Researcher Roy Gustrowsky transcribed this letter from the original at the Wisconsin Historical Society in Madison, Wisconsin.  He is currently in the process of writing a regimental history of the 7th Wisconsin. “Delia” was Henry F. Young’s wife, and “Father” was his Father-in-Law Jared Warner, a prominent businessman of Grant County, Wisconsin. Gustrowsky has magnanimously made these transcriptions available to the Siege of Petersburg Online for publication, and we thank him for his generosity.

UPDATE: I recently learned that a new book has been published by the University of Wisconsin Press, entitled Dear Delia: The Civil War Letters of Captain Henry F. Young, Seventh Wisconsin Infantry, and edited by Micheal Larson and John David Smith. If you want to read all of Henry’s letters throughout the war, purchase the book!

In Line of Battle west of the Weldon RR 5 Ms South of Petersburg Va
Aug 23/[18]64

Dear Delia

We [the 7th Wisconsin] have had Severe marching and fighting since My last, we had a hard fight here day before yesterday [August 21, 1864]. We fought behind breast works and whip(p)ed the Rebs badly with very little loss to us.1 I have lost no men only bullets since we started. Webster Cook was sun struck and is gone to the hospital, a no. of others gave out the day we came here but there are none of them dangerously ill.

I rec. yours from Annamosa(Annarosa?) you did right to go hope you enjoyed yourself.

I sent Pa a draft for $400 hope it will arrive safe. Sloat has just got back. It has rained here every day for two weeks. The roads are in horrible condition.

My love to the children. Tell Laura I will answer her letter soon.

Ever yours

Henry [F. Young]2


Letters of Henry W. Young:


  1. SOPO Editor’’s Note: Captain Young is briefly writing of the August 21, 1864 fighting in the multi-day Battle of Globe Tavern. In this fight, the Confederates tried to send Hagood’s Brigade on what they thought would be a flank attack against the Union Fifth Corps’ left flank.  However, the Union had been hard at work building a fortified line running south along the western side of the Halifax Road and the Weldon Railroad to guard against just such a flank attack.  Due to terrain, the Confederates could not see much of this line.  Hagood’s assault was a disaster and convinced Lee that the Union army had permanently gotten a foothold on the Weldon Railroad.
  2. Young, Henry F. “In Line of Battle west of the Weldon RR 5 Ms South of Petersburg Va.” Received by Dear Delia, 5 Ms South of Petersburg Va, 23 August 1864, Petersburg, VA.
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