January 10

February 6

February  12

March 10

June 2

July 21

August 26

October 19

December 4



In 1863,  the Civil War had been raging on for over 1 1/2 years,  I can imagine that A.J. and the rest of the boys in the 2nd Michigan  were tired, homesick,  and disgusted with war,  and ready for the hostilities to end.  A.J. writes often in his letters of his wish to be home with family and friends.  


The beginning of 1863 the boys are still camped near Fredericksburg,  Virginia, in a letter from January 10, A.J. writes of not receiving any pay and the poor food they are eating "mostly hard bread and pork". 


In February they move by train and boat to Hampton Roads, Virginia where they remain in the area for about a month. On March 10 A.J. writes a letter stating his opinion  on the generals he likes and dislikes, President Lincoln, and  serving his country. 


In late March the 2nd moves again by boat to Baltimore,  Maryland then by train to  Harpers Ferry,  West Virginia,  through  Northern Maryland and finally arriving  at Parkersburg  West Virginia. where once again they board a boat and head down the Ohio River towards Kentucky, arriving in Louisville on March 25. 


The Second would remain in Northern Kentucky through April and may, participating in a few skirmishes and scouting  for the enemy.  On June 2  A.J. writes of visiting the cemetery at Lexington Kentucky and seeing soldiers from both sides of the war's  graves, he also mentions that he believes they will move any day witch on   June 4,  they do once again boarding boat at Louisville and heading South towards Vicksburg Mississippi.     


The Second arrives in Vicksburg Mississippi in mid June,  where they  remain until July 4, when  the besieged city surrenders.  They then move on to Jackson,  Mississippi and participate in the siege there before the Federal troops gain control on July 17.  In a Letter dated July 21, A.J. Writes his parents about the Siege of Vicksburg, the march to Jackson and describes the tearing up of rail road  tracks and destroying them so they were of no use as rails.  


The boys remain in Mississippi until mid august when the once again board boats and head North to Cario, Illinois where the board trains and head west through Illinois and Indiana  arriving in Kentucky in late August,  in a letter dated august 26, A.J. writes of this journey and the train accident they are involved in. 


The second stays in Kentucky for a short time before moving once again to Knoxville,  Tennessee where they remain in the area until the end of 1863.  In A.J's final letter Dated December 4 he writes of the battle  of Lenoir, on November 16, and the siege and battles of Knoxville which followed, he also writes of a friend Darwin Davis who Around November 24 was wounded in the knee and taken prisoner  when the Second Michigan was order into the enemy rifle pits.  Darwin was exchanged after the skirmish and had his left leg amputated and apparently survived.  A.J. writes he had visited  Darwin  and his leg was healing  and he thought he would soon be well. 


On the left are the 9 letters from A.J.