Chamberlain Letters

Chamberlain Letters on Digital Maine - includes primary source documents and full text

Dates and Location of Where Letters were Written by Joshua Chamberlain
Date Location Contents
September 24, 1861 Bowdoin College Chamberlain to Governor - recommends Walter S. Poor for an officer's commission. 1 page.
July 14, 1862 Brunswick Chamberlain to Governor Washburn - offers his services and requests commission. 2 pages. "I have always been interested in military matters, and what I do not know in that line, I know how to learn."
July 17, 1862 Brunswick Chamberlain to Governor Washburn - acknowledges not from Washburn, confirms appointment to see him in Augusta. 2 pages.
July 17, 1862 Brunswick John D. Lincoln to Governor - recommends Chamberlain for a suitable position. 2 pages. "I need not tell you that the prof is a gentleman and scholar but let me say that he is a man of energy and sense."
July 21, 1862 Portland Drummond to Governor - Chamberlain not a suitable candidate for commission. 3 pages. "Private. Have you appointed Chamberlain Colonel of the 20th? His old classmates, etc. here say you have been deceived: that C is nothing at all: that is the universal expression of those who know him."
July 22, 1862 Brunswick Chamberlain to Governor - regarding premature rumors about his possible commission to command a new regiment.. 2 pages. "I beg your excellency to understand that these mortifying reports did not come from me."
July 23, 1862 Brunswick Chamberlain to "To whom it may conern" - recommends Charles Bennett, a Bowdoin sophmore for a commission. 1 page..
August 8, 1862 Brunswick Chamberlain to Governor - states his Bowdoin College faculty colleagues are against his going and Chamberlain wishes the Governor to ignore them. 3 pages. "But I feel that I must go & I trust that the representations they propose to make to induce you to withhold my commission will have no more weitht with you than with me."
August 8, 1862 Brunswick Chamberlain to Governor - accepts the commission. 1 page.
August 15, 1862 Brunswick Chamberlain to Colonel Eugene Hale, Aid-de-Camp - makes recommendations of his brother Thomas Chamberlain and others for commissions. 3 pages.
August 15, 1862 Portland Chamberlain to not addressed - recommends A.N. Linscott. 1 page.
August 25, 1862 Camp Mason Chamberlain to Hodsdon - cover letter for receipts. 1 page.
November 16, 1862 Camp of the 20th Reg't Maine Vols. near Warrington, Va. Chamberlain and Gilmore to Governor recommending A. Ames for Brig. Gen. 1 page.
December 20, 1862 20th Hd. Qrs. 20th Regt. Me. Vols. Camp in Falmouth, Va. Chamberlain to Hodsdon - routine correspondence. 1 page.
February 26, 1863 Head Quarters 20th Maine Vols. Chamberlain to Governor - re promotions within the regiment. 3 pages.
May 18, 1863 Head Quarters 20th Me. Chamberlain to Hodsdon - cover letter for returns. 1 page.
May 21, 1863 Head Qrs. 20th Maine Vols. Camp near Falmouth, Va. Chamberlain to Brig. Gen. L. Thomas re 2nd Lt. Mattson C. Sanborn. 2 pages.
May 24, 1863 Camp near Falmouth, Va. Brig. Gen. Ames to Governor Coburn - recommends Chamberlain to succeed him as Colonel of the 20th. 2 pages.
May 25, 1863 Head Quarters 20th Maine Volunteers Chamberlain to Coburn - discusses regimental promotions, other regimental matters, and the mutineers transferred from the 2nd. 4 pages. "You are aware, Governor, that promises were made to induce these men to enlist, which are not now kept, & I must say that I sympathize with them in their view of the case."
May 26, 1863 Head Qrs. 20th Maine Vols. Chamberlain to Hodsdon - re 2nd Lt. Sanborn. 1 page.
May 27, 1863 Head Quarters 20th Maine Chamberlain to Coburn - re the regimental surgeons and the men of the 2nd Regiment. 3 pages. "The men of the 2nd are quite unhappy, still feeling that great injustice has been done them..."
May 28, 1863 Foxcroft John H. Rice to Governor - recommends Chamberlain as Col. in the 20th. 2 pages.
July 6, 1863 Head Quarters 20th Maine Vols. Field near Gettysburg, Pa. Chamberlain to Brigade Headquarters - Battle Report. 8 pages. "In the midst of this struggle, our ammunition utterly failed ... As a last, desperate resort, I ordered a charge. The word 'fix bayonets' flew from man to man. The click of the steel seemed to give new zeal to all. The men dashed forward with a shout."
July 6, 1863 Field near Emmitsburg Chamberlain to AAAG Third Brigade. From Official Records of the War of the Rebellion.
July 11, 1863 Hd. Qrs 20 Maine Vols. Field near Hagerstown Chamberlain to Hodsdon - belatedly acknowledges promotion as Colonel of the 20th and the regiment's participation in several battles. 2 pages. "We have been sometimes three weeks without a mail & our baggage and papers have not been up with us for nearly a month."
July 13, 1863 Field near Hagerstown Return of Casualties in 20th at Gettysburg and Sharpsburg Pike. 8 pages.
July 17, 1863 Head Quarters 20th Me. Camp near Berlin, Md. Chamberlain to Hodsdon - cover letter for monthly returns. 1 page.
July 21, 1863 Head Quarters 20th Maine Vols. In the Field Chamberlain to Coburn - re actions of the 20th at Gettysburg, Lt. Col. Gilmore, and the lack of medical staff. 4 pages. "Our toilsome & hurried marches broke down a great many and I have had to be surgeon & father as well as Colonel."
July 29, 1863 Hd. Qrs 20th Maine Vols. Warrenton Chamberlain to Coburn - re Verano G. Bryant and the fact the regiment is below minimum count for men. 2 pages.
August 7, 1863 Brunswick Chamberlain to Coburn - reports on the death of Captain Billings and Lieut. Linscott, discusses regimental matters, and his health. 3 pages. "I am at home a few days having been ordered north on account of my health."
August 25, 1863 Head Quarters 20th Maine Vols. Beverly Ford, Va. Chamberlain to Coburn - recommends various individuals for promotions within the regiment and announces his assignment to command the 3rd Brigade, V Amry Corps. 3 pages. "I regret being thus obliged to leave even temporarily the noble Regiment with which I have shared so many hardships & perils, & not a few honors too; but I shall have it still under my eye, & in my care, & shall spare no effort to maintain its high & deserved reputation."
August 31, 1863 Head Quarters 3rd Brigade, 1st Div., 5th Corps. Camp at Beverly Ford, Va. Chamberlain to Coburn - recommends Lt. Adelbert B. Twitchell of the 5th Battery for promotion. 1 page.
September 1, 1863 Head-Quarters 1st Brigade, 1st Div. 5th Corps A.P. Brig. Gen. Barnes to Chamberlain in praise of his service at Gettysburg. 2 pages.
September 8, 1863 Army of the Potomac, 1st Div., 1st Corps. James C. Rice to Fessenden - writes in glowing terms re Chamberlain. 3 pages. "...he has greatly distinguished shimself for the skillful disposition of his command and for his personal bravery."
September 19, 1863 Head Qrs 3rd Brig., 1st. Div., near Cedar Mountain Chamberlain to Coburn - discusses candidates for regimental surgeon; other regimental matters including 2nd Maine transfers and possible trouble with drafted conscripts.. 4 pages. "I trust we can manage them with enough skill and prudence to save them from desertion and its inevitable consequence -- shooting. I don't want any of that business with Maine men."
October 7, 1863 Division Headquarters Mervine to Colonel - a cover letter from Brig. Gen. Charles Griffin to General S. Williams recommending Chamberlain for promotion. 1 page. "As the enclosed is the first endorsement of the kind Gen'l Griffin has ever made, I cannot resist sending it to you 'sub rosa'."
October 7, 1863 Head Qrs. 1st Division 5th Corps. Camp near Culpepper, Va. Brig. Gen. Charles Griffin to Gen. Seth Williams - recommends Chamberlain for promotion to rank of Brig. Gen. 2 pages.
October 8, 1863 Head Quarters 20th Maine Vols. 3rd Brig., 1st. Div., 5 Corps. Army of the Potomac, near Culpepper, Va. Gilmore to Governor - cover letter for letters of recommendation for Chamberlain. 2 pages.
October 28, 1863 Head Quarters 3rd Brigade, 1st Divis., 5th Corps. Auburn Chamberlain to Coburn - about regimental surgeons and frank discussion of reasons for no promotion for Lt. Nichols "I gave him a strong commendation for cavalry service in the belief that a new sphere of duty might give him a better opportunity to reform & with the conviction that his peculiar dash & fearlessness fitted him for that arm of service."
November 4, 1863 Head Qrs 3rd Brigade, 1st Division, 5th Corps Chamberlain to Hodsdon - cover letter forwarding his official Gettysburg report of July 6. 3pages.
March 10, 1864 Washington, DC Chamberlain to Cony- recommends Lt. James H. Nichols for appointment in a Cavalry regiment. 1 page.
March 31, 1864 Brunswick T.M. Given to Cony - cover letter for letter written to Cony by Chamberlain recommending Thomas M. Given for lieutenancy. 2 letters.
April 25, 1864 Trenton, New Jersey General Court Martial Chamberlain to Cony - re Chaplain for the 20th. 1 page.
May 18, 1864 Before Spottsylvania C. H. Chamberlain to Cony - recommending certain officers for promotion; discusses recent regimental activities and his pleasure at being relieved from court martial duty. 4 pages. "I write this as we are lying in line of battle behind our rifle-pit works not more than 600 or 800 yards from the enemy's works."
July 5, 1864 General Court Martial Rooms. 467 14th Street, Washington, D.C. Charles D. Gilmore to Hodsdon describing Chamberlain's wound, his promotion to Brig. Gen., his merit as a soldier and the names of the men Chamberlain recommends for promotion. 3 pages. "His wound is a very severe one and a very dangerous one, and the surgeons are by no means certain of saving his life."
July 22, 1864 Annapolis John C. Chamberlain to General Hodsdon - thanks Hodsdon for helping him to reach his brother and describes Chamberlain's condition. 3 pages.
August 31, 1864 US General Hospital Annapolis, Md. Chamberlain to Cony - recommends Captain P.M. Fogler, writes of his recovery and the upcoming national election. 4 pages. "I long to be in the field again doing my part to keep the old flag up, with all its stars."
September 22, 1864 Officer's Hospital at Annapolis, Md. Chamberlain to Cony- recommends Captain A.B. Twitchell of the 7th Battery. 2 pages.
August, 1865 Washington, DC to Hodsdon - a printed notification of a history being prepared on the 5th Corps and requests that recollections be addressed to Chamberlain at Brunswick.
November 11, 1865 Brunswick Chamberlain to Hodsdon - re request for materials on histories. 2 pages.
November 14, 1865 Brunswick Chamberlain to Hodsdon - re information for histories. 1 page.
December 1, 1865 Brunswick Chamberlain to Hodsdon - re report he sent to Hodsdon. 1 page.
December 6, 1865 Brunswick Chamberlain to Hodsdon - re his time in the regiment. 2 pages.
November 29, 1866 Brunswick Chamberlain to Hodsdon - thanks Hodsdon for services rendered. 1 page.