Return to Main Soldier's Letters Page

Return to Civil War Page 2

Return to Civil War Page 1


Letters from the Army of the Potomac

     The letters below are all from soldiers who served in regiments of the Army of the Potomac. Almost all of this service was in Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia (including what is now West Virginia). The most famous battles of the war were fought here. Twice Robert E. Lee led his army in invasions of Northern territory, Antietam in Maryland in September 1862 where the Union army won a narrow victory and Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, where the Confederates met a decisive defeat in July 1863. Until then there had been a string of humiliating defeats for the Union Army, including the 1st and 2nd battles of Bull Run, Chancellorsville, Fredricksburg and others. In 1864 General Grant was given command of all Union forces. Union troops then were on the offensive until the end of the war. Grant was proceeding toward Richmond, Sherman was marching through Georgia, and General Phil Sheridan's cavalry was waging a scorched earth march through Virginia's fertile Shenandoah Valley. Just outside Richmond, Grant met with fierce resistance and suffered heavy losses in the Battle of Cold Harbor. He then circled to the south of Richmond and concentrated on capturing Petersburg which was an important rail center, as well as a softer target. The Siege of Petersburg lasted nine months from June 1864 until March 1865. Union troops entered both Petersburg and Richmond on April 3, and Lee surrendered six days later at Appomattox Courthouse.

US Army 6th Infantry Division

7th Ohio Volunteer Infantry

73rd Ohio Volunteer Infantry

Battery B 1st West Virginia Light Artillery

1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry

5th West Virginia Volunteer Infantry

8th West Virginia Volunteer Infantry & later 7th West Virginia Cavalry

Horse Battery 2nd US Artillery Army of the Potomac

12th Ohio Volunteer Infantry

Ringgold Cavalry

19th Ohio Volunteer Infantry

141st Ohio Volunteer Infantry (National Guard)

2nd Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry

60th Ohio Volunteer Infantry

195th Ohio Volunteer Infantry

194th Ohio Volunteer Infantry

Return to Top