Battlefield Tours


Corporal Joseph M. Raymond, Company I, 101st Ohio Volunteer Infantry, (Carlin's Brigade, Davis' Division, XX Army Corps (McCook) to Daniel Rule, October 18, 1883. Editing to spelling and punctuation by the Tiffin Tribune where this letter appeared, October 30, 1863.]

 1st Lt. Isaac P. Rule was wounded in the fight for east Vineyard field, September 19, 1863. He died at the division hospital at Crawfish Springs on September 20, 1863, and was buried somewhere on the grounds of the Lee - Gordon Mansion. He was exhumed after the siege of Chattanooga and his remains returned home. He now rests in Pleasant Hill Cemetery on State Route 101, approximately 10 miles outside of Tiffin, Ohio.

 In the two and one-half days' fighting at Chickamauga there were 34, 624 casualties - killed, wounded, and missing - Americans all. This letter tells of the death of one of those soldiers.

Chattanooga, Oct. 18th, 1863

Dear Sir:

 It becomes my duty to address you, though it seems an herculean task, and I can hardly find language that seems proper to make use of informing you of your late bereavement.
 Your much beloved brother Isaac is no more. He has fallen a sacrifice to the interests of his country while in its defense against the most wicked and unholy rebellion ever inaugurated on this earth; deeply lamented by each and every one of the now little band to which he belonged, and O, the intensity of that grief which his parents, brothers, sisters, and numerous friends will feel on learning this mournful news, tongue cannot express. He received his mortal wound Saturday, the 19th, about three or four o'clock, in the abdomen, the ball lodging in his right hip. I was near him when he fell, and immediately ran to him, but could render him no assistance alone, the Regiment at the moment having been slightly driven back. I endeavored to place him in as easy position as possible and told him I could do no more for him.

 I then went to the Colonel and told him that Lieutenant Rule had fallen, and he directed me to get assistance and carry him from the field, which I did. We carried him about two miles before we could get him in an ambulance which conveyed him to a hospital. There he was placed on a tolerably comfortable bed, and I watched with him almost constantly until six o'clock Sunday, when his sufferings, which had been most intense, were ended; and he who was so much idolized by his family connections, was numbered with the silent dead.
 He felt from the first that his wound was fatal, and expressed himself so to one or two of his friends, as we were carrying him in. He seemed perfectly calm and resigned - said that he could afford to die for his country if it would only save it. I did not talk with him upon the subject of his departure, thinking that he would talk of it himself, but his sufferings would not permit him to talk much.

 I had some hopes that he might get better, until Sunday afternoon, when he began failing fast, our forces began falling back to this place, and strong fear were entertained of the enemy coming upon us before the train could be got away. I was determined to stay with him to the last, which I did doing all I could to alleviate his sufferings. He died at six o'clock, just as a Regiment of rebel cavalry rode up to the hospital, which was surrendered to them.
 Monday we buried him, with about twenty others who had died at the hospital. I marked his grave with a piece of plank, on which I carved his name in full, and should every outward mark be obliterated, I think I could find his grave. I have his effects that he had about his person - expect to cross the river to-day and get his valise and other things which are with the train, all of which I will try and keep until I can safety send them to you, which may not be long. I have not been able to do anything since the 22d, on account of lameness in my back; I was paroled and sent through the lines with the sick and wounded.

 It was impossible for me to write sooner as I was in the enemy's lines until the 29th. Daniel, I have written to you because I was better acquainted with you, and you corresponded more with your brother than any of your father's family, and because I did not feel as though I could convey the mournful news directly to you parents.

 As yet, I can give but little or no information respecting others. I have been with the Regiment since coming here - find very many gone - killed , wounded or prisoners. I will be probably be sent North soon and will have a better opportunity to address you.

 You have the most deep and heart-felt sympathy of every member of the 101st Regiment, who have learned to love and value your lamented brother, as true and tried friend, and brother soldier, than whom none can be Truer, Nobler or Braver.

Joseph M. Raymond

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