Letter – Richard Coulter, 28 March 1863


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Letter written by Colonel Richard Coulter of the 11th PA Volunteer Infantry, to William Dehon, from a camp near Fletcher’s Chapel, Virginia. Coulter is writing to Dehon to thank him for the photograph of Dehon’s son, Lieutenant Arthur Dehon, as well as for the photograph of Colonel Webster. Coulter speaks fondly of Arthur, and praises his assistance during the engagement at Antietam, Maryland. He concludes by expressing his sincerest sympathies for Dehon’s loss.

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Hd. Qrs. 11 Regt. P.V.

                           Camp near Fletcher’s Chapel, Va.

                              March 28 1863

Wm. Dehon, Esq.


    Dear Sir

      Your note of Feby 19th was not rec’d until yesterday in my return to the regt., of having been absent since [the] engagement at Fredericksburg, where I had the misfortune to be wounded.

     You will please find enclosed the letter referred to in your note for Lt. Dehon to Mr. Butler.

     You will accept my thanks for the photograph of your son, enclosed with

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your letter and also one of Col. Webster, rec’d from friends of Capt. Williams of the 12th Mass.

     Your son was indeed a warm personable friend, & had attached himself very closely to me and was of great assistance to me during & after the engagement at Antietam, Md.

     This intimacy continued so far as circumstances (his being detached from us) would permit, until the day of his death. I saw him in the fire part of that day & can fully endorse the opinion of all who saw him as

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to his gallant conduct & deportment.

     I tender my sincere sympathies in this, your great bereavement.

     Accept my kindest regards & remember me to your youngest son, whom I met with you at Sharpsburg.

                   I remain,

                        Yours respectfully,

                           R. Coulter

Richard Coulter was born in Greensburg, PA on Oct.1, 1827. At age 33 he enrolled as a captain in Co. A of the 11th PA Infantry on April 24, 1861. He was mustered out as a captain on July 31, 1861, and immediately commissioned lieutenant colonel. His promotion to colonel was effective November 27, 1861, and he became a brigadier general by brevet on August 1, 1864, then brevet major general on April 1, 1865. He was wounded December 13, 1862 at Fredericksburg; July 1, 1863 at Gettysburg; and May 10, 1864 at Spotsylvania. Col. Coulter mustered out of the service July 1, 1865, and died in Greensburg, PA on October 14, 1908.

Arthur Dehon was William Dehon’s son and a 2nd Lieutenant in Webster’s 12 MA Infantry. He was killed in action at Fredericksburg.

Letter – William Wilson, 18 April 1863


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Letter written by Lieutenant William L. Wilson, Acting Assistant Adjutant General, 1st Brigade, 3rd Division, 1st Army Corps, to William Dehon. Wilson writes to express his condolences on the death of Dehon’s son, Lieutenant Arthur Dehon at the Battle of Fredericksburg, VA. Wilson writes that he knew Arthur when they were at Sharpsburg, MD which was under command of General George Meade. Wilson concludes by asking for a photograph of Arthur, to remember the friend he so respected.

Head Quarters 1st Brigade 3rd Div.

                 1st A.C.    April 18, 1863

Wm. Dehon, Esq.


       Dear Sir

            I was shown several weeks ago by Capt. Baird of Genl. Doubleday’s staff a photograph of your late son, Lt. Dehon, who fell while discharging his duty at Fredericksburg in Dec. last. I would like very much to have one of him if you have one you can spare.

     My acquaintance with him was formed at Sharpsburg, while Gen. Meade command was lying at that place, and continued up to the time of his death. Being in the same division with him, my position brought me in his company quite often, and the attachment I formed for him made me lament bitterly the loss of a noble soul when he fell.

Disease prevented my participation in the conflict where he behaved so gallantly, and when I saw his death announced in the papers, short as was my acquaintance with him, I felt the loss of a valued friend.

I would be exceedingly obliged sir if you could grant my request, as I have a deep desire to possess an image of one whom I so respected.

                             Very respectfully,

                              Your Obt. Servt.

W.L. Wilson

Lt & A.A.A.G.

                             1st Brigade, 3rd Div, 1st A.C.

William L. Wilson, was on the staff of Brigadier General Thomas A. Rowley at Gettysburg, and was slightly wounded in that battle (cited by Rowley for good service). He originally served with the 142nd PA Infantry, enrolling Sept. 1, 1862 as adjutant. He was discharged for disability on December 12, 1863.

Arthur Dehon was William Dehon’s son and a 2nd Lieutenant in Webster’s 12 MA Infantry.