Letter – John Compton, 24 September 1863

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Letter written by Private John D. Compton of Company G, 105th OH Volunteer Infantry, to his sister Margaret, from a camp near Chattanooga, TN. Compton describes a “hard fight” that occurred the previous week [Battle of Chickamauga]. He writes that they were outnumbered and suffered many casualties but only one man from his company was wounded. The regiment was forced to retreat on the last day of the fight. His company was then held in reserve.He describes an order to “charge bayonets” which drove back one brigade of Confederate troops. Compton sends his regards to his other family members, and urges his sister to reply soon.


-Page 1-

Camp near Chatinuga Tenn Sep 24/63

Dear sister Margret I recevid your [???] letter and was glad to hear from you since I got your letter We have had some hard times We have ben in a very hard fight last friday saturday, and Sunday We fought the enimy with Superior number our loss was grate While the enimy was grater from our Compiney there was none Killed but one wounded that was Cussion the red hed that ust to go Kingsville to School the ordly sargen and my self took him from the field our regt on saturday was obliged to retreet our ranks was broken by the surpier number but the brigade was scatered to the 7 winds of the Earth but our small squad containing 425 men was scatered could not get the next but 126 men in our reg We then held in resirve so if our ranks broke we could sustain them the rebels broke our ranks on sunday the men ran We layed about 6 rods back of them they ran thru ours the order was given to charge bayonets We done it and drove one brigade of them they flanked us we ran back We expect another atact but let them come We are very heavy fortifying here Waiting for [???] then we will try them Well I must stop riting for this time J.D. [???] is all rite and all the rest I will tell you the rest next leter rite soone from your Brother give my love to all Father mother sister brother rite soone let our fokes no how I am as soone as you get this

-Page 2-

Well James rite to me

Good Bye Forever J.D.

Compton to Margret and James [???] rite soone as you get this


John D. Compton was the son of farmers Rueben and Margaret Cary Compton. He was born in New York in 1842. Sometime between 1850 and 1860 the family moved west and settled in Kingsville, Ashtabula County in Ohio. He was killed on July 22, 1864 during the battle of Atlanta from a gun shot wound to the abdomen.