Military Affairs and Conflict

    Entries drawn from collection & document descriptions

Letter from Roger B. Taney to Franklin Pierce
August 29, 1853

Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger B. Taney writes President Franklin Pierce and recommends Lieutenant Colonel Taylor’s son, Francis H. Taylor, for an appointment “to the office of military storekeeper in Oregon.” Justice Taney argues that Francis is “well qualified for the appointment… and would...

Location: I-SpahrB-1948-1

Subject: Military Affairs and Conflict, Politics and Government

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1840-1859

Letter from James Buchanan to Christopher L. Ward
September 20, 1853

James Buchanan writes to Christopher L. Ward and describes life in London as the new United States Minister to the United Kingdom and discusses the possibility of a conflict between Russia and Turkey in the Crimean. Buchanan also mentions his introduction to Queen Victoria. "The manners of the...

"Napoleon," by Noah Bowlus
July 13, 1854

Noah Bowlus prepared this oration, entitled "Napoleon," for the commencement ceremonies held July 13, 1854. Authoring an original speech was among the graduation requirements for Dickinson College seniors at that time. Transcript included.

Location: Orations-1854-B787n

Subject: International Affairs, Military Affairs and Conflict, Politics and Government

Format: Speeches and Sermons

Time Period: 1840-1859

Letter from James Buchanan to Sir William Molesworth
July 27, 1854

US Minister to the United Kingdom James Buchanan thanks Sir William Molesworth for his speech on "Naval Prizes." While "the agreement is unanswerable," Buchanan tells Molesworth that he "presented more historical information on the subject, in a clear and distinct manner, than I have ever seen...

Location: I-Friends-2002-1

Subject: International Affairs, Military Affairs and Conflict

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1840-1859

Journal of Charles Collins
1855-1872

Charles Collins records his thoughts and activities during his latter years as president of Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and then as the head of State Female College in Memphis, Tennessee. Collins's entries also include detailed notes for his sermons as well as copies of letters...

Letter from James M. McKim to Mr. Worrell
January 20, 1855

James M. McKim, a member of the Class of 1828 and an editor at the Philadelphia based The Anti-Slavery Standard, writes to a subscriber, Mr. Worrell. McKim mentions the major slavery related event of the day as well as the Anglo-French siege of Sevastopol (Sebastopol) in the Crimean War...

Letters from James Buchanan to James Webb
March 30 - December 7, 1855

James Buchanan, the United States Minister to the United Kingdom, writes four letters to General James Watson Webb regarding Buchanan's experiences living in London and international affairs, including the Ostend Manifesto, the Vienna Conference, and the prospects for peace. Buchanan also notes...

Letter from Roger B. Taney to Taney Campbell
August 18, 1855

Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger Brooke Taney writes his grandson, [Roger Brooke] Taney Campbell, and notes that he is glad to have heard so much from the Campbell family this summer. As Taney explains, he and his wife just this morning received letters from Taney Campbell's father and sister...

Letter from Harriet Lane to Lily Macalester
September 13, 1857

First Lady Harriet Lane writes to Lily Macalester about the going ons of Washington D.C., her trip to Pennsylvania, Macalester's trip to West Point, as well as various bits of gossip. Lane also comments on several political figures, including Secretary of War John B. Floyd and Senator Stephen...

Letter from James Buchanan to E. L. Molineux
September 1, 1858

President James Buchanan explains why he cannot grant E. L. Molineux's request that a merchant clerk of New York City receive an appointment to the United States Military Academy at West Point. Transcript included.

Location: MC 1998.10, B3, F26

Subject: Education, Military Affairs and Conflict, Politics and Government

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1840-1859

Letter from Jeremiah Black to Jacob Thompson
November 2, 1858

United States Attorney General Jeremiah Sullivan Black writes to Jacob Thompson, Secretary of the Interior, with a legal opinion on the question of whether widows of officers and soldiers could receive a government pension if they remarry. "Upon the whole it is clear," as Black concludes, that...

Location: I-BeachW-1974-1

Subject: Legal Affairs, Military Affairs and Conflict, Politics and Government

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1840-1859

Journal of Charles F. Thomas
July 9, 1859 - November 13, 1861

Charles F. Thomas' diary includes intermittent entries dating from leaving Dickinson College in July 1859, to attending at Garrett Bible Institute in Evanston, Illinois, and to working as a Methodist circuit rider in Pennsylvania as the Civil War begins. In March 1860, Thomas saw Abraham Lincoln...

Letters from Andrew Curtin to Eli Slifer (circa 1860)
circa 1860

Andrew Curtin writes eight letters to Eli Slifer in which he discusses appointing a new colonel, providing money to Hays for a contest, an article in the Pennsylvanian, and nominations for Senate. Transcripts included.

Note: These letters are undated. 

Letters from Alexander McClure to Eli Slifer, 1860-62
1860-1862

Alexander McClure writes thirteen letters to Eli Slifer, the Secretary of the Commonwealth under Governor Andrew Gregg Curtin, in which he criticizes the management of local military troops, proposes raising regiments for the Union Army, comments on various Pennsylvania political issues, and...

Letters from Theodore Christ to Eli Slifer
1860-1861

Dr. Theodore S. Christ writes eleven letters to Eli Slifer, the Secretary of the Commonwealth under Governor Andrew Curtin, regarding the organization of volunteer companies and daily life in a Union Army infantry company during the Civil War. Dr. Christ describes the injuries of soldiers and...

Location: MC 2003.4, B2, F18-19

Subject: Health and Medicine, Military Affairs and Conflict

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1860-1879

Letter from William Reed to Unknown Recipient
December 19, 1860

William Bradford Reed writes an unknown recipient and discusses President James Buchanan's perspective on the secession crisis. Reed notes that President Buchanan "told me last night he though things looked better" and that "he has no doubt of the safety of the [federal] forts" located in...

Location: I-SpahrB-1957-10

Subject: Military Affairs and Conflict, Politics and Government

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1860-1879

Letter from Robert Grier to Aubrey Smith
December 29, 1860

United States Supreme Court Justice Robert Cooper Grier (Class of 1812) writes to Aubrey H. Smith regarding the secession crisis. Grier describes President James Buchanan as "wholly unequal" to dealing with the secession crisis, calls Secretary of War John B. Floyd a traitor, describes flaws of...

Location: I-SpahrB-undated-52

Subject: Military Affairs and Conflict, Politics and Government

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1860-1879

Letters from Andrew Curtin to Eli Slifer, 1860-63
1860-1863

Governor Andrew Curtin writes eleven letters to Eli Slifer in which he offers him the position as Secretary of the Commonwealth, describes his preference for David Wilmot as Senator, recommends Wallace Kerr for the vacant clerkship in Slifer's office, notes problems with General Biddle's...

Letters from Thomas Orwig to Eli Slifer
1861-1864

Thomas Orwig writes twelve letters to Eli Slifer, the Secretary of the Commonwealth during the Civil War, regarding Orwig's military and administrative affairs with Battery "E" of 1st Pennsylvania artillery. " My greatest [military] ambition is to crush the rebellion," as Orwig notes....

Letters from Henry Maxwell to Eli Slifer
1861-1863

Hnery D. Maxwell writes sixteen letters to Eli Slifer, Secretary of the Commonwealth during the Civil War, regarding the following topics: Maxwell's application for the directorship of the mint, recruitment and funding for the army, potential candidates for vacant positions in the military,...

Location: MC 2003.4, B7, F7

Subject: Military Affairs and Conflict, Politics and Government

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1860-1879

Letters from Jacob Frick to Eli Slifer
February - December 1861

Jacob G. Frick writes thirteen letters to Eli Silfer, the Secretary of the Commonwealth under Governor Andrew Curtin, on a number of topics, including conflict with Baltimore over commerce, affairs in military administration and compensation, as well as daily life in the Union army during the...

Letter from Edwin Stanton to James Buchanan (Copy)
March 10, 1861

Former Attorney General Edwin McMasters Stanton writes former President James Buchanan to discuss public affairs in Washington and comment on events that occurred during the last few months of Buchanan's administration.

Location: I-SpahrB-1959-9

Subject: Legal Affairs, Military Affairs and Conflict, Politics and Government

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1860-1879

Petition to Appoint Theodore Christ as Surgeon’s Assistant
[April 1861?]

The Officers of the Lewisburg Infantry company - Captain J. W. Chamberlin, First Lieutenant G. H. Hassenplug, , Second Lieutenant J. Merrill Linn, and Chaplain Rev. L. W. McDaniel - file this petition to ask that Dr. Theodore S. Christ be appointed as Surgeon’s Assistant. Transcript included....

Location: MC 2003.4, B2, F18

Subject: Military Affairs and Conflict

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1860-1879

Letters from Israel Gutelius to Eli Slifer (Apr. - Dec. 1861)
April - December 1861

Israel Gutelius writes fifteen letters to Eli Slifer, the Secretary of the Commonwealth during the Civil War, in which he asks Slifer to go to Washington and request the Secretary of the Navy to appoint Gutelius to a position in Philadelphia. "If I am appointed," Gutelius promises to "publish...

Letter from Andrew Curtin to Unknown Recipient
April 11, 1861

Pennsylvania Governor Andrew Gregg Curtin writes to an unknown recipient and asks if he will be in Washington, DC. Curtin, who will go to Washington on Saturday, explains that "we will pass a bill at once to prepare the State for what may occur." Transcript included.

Location: I-Friends-1975-27

Subject: Military Affairs and Conflict, Politics and Government

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1860-1879

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