Christopher T. Dunham to his wife Sarah E. (Sadie) Cummings written September 16, 1863 while camped near Pond Spring, Georgia.

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Christopher T. Dunham to his wife Sarah E. (Sadie) Cummings written September 16, 1863 while camped near Pond Spring, Georgia.


Christopher Theodore Dunham was born Sept 24, 1836 in Berkshire, Tioga County, NY. He moved to Freeport, Stephenson County, IL around 1856 and in 1860 was elected county surveyor. In the spring of 1861 he enlisted as a corporal in Capt. Atkin's company in the 11th Illinois Regiment of the Union Army. He transferred to Noleman's Calvary Company and was mustered out July 5, 1862. He returned to Freeport where he again enlisted under the President's call of July 1. 1862 and was elected Captain of Company F, 92nd Illinois Volunteers. With his background as a surveyor, he was detailed as Topographical officer on the staff of Brigadier General A. Baird, commander of his regiment's division. He married Sarah (“Sadie” or “Saddie”) E. Cummings September 22, 1862 in Freeport, Illinois. In 1864 he was tendered by Governor Yates the commission of Lt. Col. but turned it down to remain on staff duty. He was also attached to HQ 3rd Div. Army of Kentucky and HQ 1st Div. Reserve Army Corps. After returning to Freeport he was again surveying, but in 1872 was admitted to the Elgin Insane Asylum, where he died January 27, 1878.


Christopher Theodore Dunham


September 16, 1863


Midway Village Museum







Camp near Pond Spring P.O. Ga. Sept 16th 1863
My Darling Wife.
As I am not able for duty yet, I thought I could write you a more lengthy letter than the previous ones -
Well my sweet wife I find myself badly afflicted this morning with two of Jobe comforters - So I can fully sympathise [sic] with you now in regard to your similar affliction whilst I was at home - these commenced coming about one week ago - they are on the left thigh & leg & about 6 inches apart! So you see my limb is rendered useless - they are very painful indeed The Doctor says they are caused by constant riding in the saddle - I did duty with them several days after the [sic] commenced paining me so much - besides these boils I have that poison ivy of which I spoke whilst at home and the very warm weather here & constant riding & skirmishing kept my blood in such a state of heat that day before yesterday the Doc. said it was absolutely necessary to to save my life for me to cease doing duty & lay up & be quiet. So I have done and the poision is much better - but will take a week to get well no doubt - This morning the Regiment moves to the front about 6 miles the Rebs are pretty stong there - I feel very bad to think I cannot accompany - them - as I have so far been with my Co. in every skirmish - but knowing I am not able I can be sattisfied [sic] to remain
Was I not fortunate in starting from Freeport the time I did - by doing so - myself & Co. was
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the first to occupy Chattanooga - that was a point I would not take any thing for -
The Col. was just in to see me he goes now with the Regt out -Sadie you have no [idea] how our boys have rode in marching for the last 25 days - I am going to remain in this little hous untill [sic] I get well unless the Rebs [sic] disturb me – hav [sic] my horse & boy so I can mount at a moments warning - Those nice things, which [you] perhaps for me came are very nice now as I [an invalid]. [It] paid me for bringing him down - The county here is mountainous - and is the soil with small oak trees - tis rather a poor soil & scare [sic] of water - The inhabitants are mostly of a poor class - & now the army makes them poor indeed - Suppose the farther South we go the [better] people we will find - Many are [loyal] to [our] government - some are enlisting on the 92 Ill - There has been no rain here for a period of 8 weeks so you can imagine how dusty the roads are Where so many thousand troops are passing If you want to keep posted in regard to the 92 - you keep a look out for the Freeport Journal as a member of the Regt corresponds for it - I just recd a letter from Mother - She was well and said she hoped my dear wife was too - I do not think there will be a general Battle this side of Rome Ga - this morning I could distinctly hear skirmishing in the front - but we may have quite a fight - but the Rebs will not make a big fight North of Rome Ga
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now Sis you must look on the map & see where these places are - How are you getting along my dear - I cannot send that colored girl until we come North or until some one does from the Regt [sic] - I hope you are all prospering - finely - that your ma will arrange it so that she need not work so much I will wait a little longer & then finish the letter - If this army is successful in fighting or capturing many of his forces I think the war will close the coming winter - but a great battle in my opinion must be fought at Rome or near there before the contest closes or this campaign ends - My dear you must try and keep good health - be careful of you [sic] self on my account if on no one else's will you? - Give yourself no uneasiness concerning me for you know I always take good care of myself I am cirtain [sic] that I will come home home again to be with my sweet wife My Bro is well – he went out this morning in charge of the company - my men are most all well - tell Mrs Bigger - Company is well
Dear wife how frequently I've thought of you since returning - well good bye many kisses - your affct Husband C.T. Dunham
Mrs Sadie D.

Original Format



Christopher Theodore Dunham, “Christopher T. Dunham to his wife Sarah E. (Sadie) Cummings written September 16, 1863 while camped near Pond Spring, Georgia.,” Midway Village Museum - Digital Collections, accessed July 16, 2024,