Soldiers Letter Index 16th OVI Home Page Dobbs Letter #2
Letter from Private Elmore G. Dobbs, Co. G, 16th OVI (90-day),
to the Holmes County Republican newspaper at Millersburg, Ohio
Camp Philippi, Barbour County (West) Virginia - June 14, 1861
Published June 27, 1861
Web Author's Notes:
This is a letter from Pvt. Elmore G. Dobbs, Company G, written to an editor of the Holmes County Republican newspaper in Millersburg, Ohio. The letter while he and the 16th Ohio were in Philippi, (West) Virginia, after the Battle of Philippi.

Dobbs describes the regiment's lack of food for several days. He also gives great detail on the accidental shooting death on June 14, 1861, of Capt. Andrew Crawford, Company F, 14th Ohio Volunteer Infantry, stationed with the 16th OVI. He goes on to give a brief description of the Battle of Philippi which had occurred on June 3 and involved the larger portion of the regiment.

newspaper article

For the Republican.


FRIEND CASKEY:--Since I last wrote to you we have seen some hard times, and others not quite so hard. We are doing finely at the present time, but on last Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday, we had scarcely anything to eat. One day, we had but three crackers, (Virginia toughs we call them,) to be divided between each mess, of eight men. But let that pass, we have plenty now of everything.

Capt. Crawford, of Defiance, formerly of New Philadelphia, was accidently shot by one of the pickets, on last Wednesday night, and was buried with the honors of war yesterday morning, at 8 o'clock. The facts in the case are, as near as I can learn, as follows: The captain was going the rounds to see that the pickets were all doing their duty, when he came to this one, seeing the picket standing up against a tree very quietly for some minutes, thought he was asleep, and that he would slip up and surprise him. The picket was watching what he thought to be a man crawling along a fence, in an opposite direction to where the Captain was, and thinking it was an enemy in the act of picking him off his post, was watching it very closely, when the Captain came up and struck the bayonet of the picket's gun with his sword; the picket having his gun cocked for the supposed enemy, wheeled and charged bayonet on the Captain, and in the excitement discharged his gun, the contents of which entered the Captain's breast, killing him instantly. Capt. Crawford was beloved by all his company, was a good commander and would no doubt have led his men to victory, had that monster, Death, spared him. He was a lawyer by profession, and is known to many citizens of Holmes and Tuscarawas. His father is a wealthy farmer and resides near New Philadelphia.

I notice a telegraphic report in your paper from Cincinnati of the Phillippi engagement -- it gives the 16th regiment no credit, when 6 companies of our reg. were in the chase. None of Company G were among them, except the Drum Major, B. J. MORRIS. I can't call it a battle. There were some 40 or 50 killed and a number wounded, all on the secession side. They did not fire a gun on the Federal troops. One of the prisoners shot Col. Kelly with a pistol, but he is not dead, nor do I think he is in much danger. He was shot through the left shoulder. We came here one week ago yesterday, and will probably remain here some time longer.


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