LEE, JOHN FURMAN, 1842-1910.
John Furman Lee papers, 1863-1864

Emory University

Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library

Atlanta, GA 30322



Permanent link: http://pid.emory.edu/ark:/25593/8zjv9

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Lee, John Furman, 1842-1910.
Title: John Furman Lee papers, 1863-1864
Call Number:Manuscript Collection No. 431
Extent: 1 microfilm reel (MF)
Abstract:Microfilm copy of the diary of Union soldier John Furman Lee of Woodbridge, New Jersey, who served in Company H, 5th New Jersey Infantry Regiment.
Language:Materials entirely in English.

Administrative Information

Restrictions on Access

Unrestricted access.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

All requests subject to limitations noted in departmental policies on reproduction.


Loaned for microfilming 1964.


[after identification of item(s)], John Furman Lee papers, Manuscript, Archives and Rare Book Library, Emory University.


Processed by MRD, April 1964.

Collection Description

Biographical Note

Sergeant John Furman Lee (1842-1910) was a life-long resident of Woodbridge, New Jersey as was his wife, Augusta (Coddington) Lee (1845-1913), whom he married on June 20, 1886. Lee joined the Union army some time before May 1862 when he was at Williamsburg, Virginia. Lee was taken prisoner at Gettysburg and was confined for a while in Libby Prison. In November 1863 he joined, or perhaps returned to, Company H, 5th New Jersey Infantry Regiment and left the service in late August, 1864 and was probably mustered out in September, 1864.

Scope and Content Note

The collection consists of a microfilm copy of a diary of Sergeant John F. Lee with entries between November 24, 1863, (at Washington, D.C.) and August 29, 1864, (City Point, Virginia). A typed copy of the diary is filmed immediately after the original. Also included on the film are daguerrotypes of John Furman Lee and Augusta Coddington, whom he married after the war.

According to the diary, Sergeant Lee stopped at Washington and procured a pass to his regiment at Brandy Station where it remained until May 1864, taking part in engagements and skirmishes in the Mine Run campaign. Lee mentions lying "in line of battle until dark near Raccoon Ford" on November 27; being on "the plank road" near Fredericksburg on November 30; and crossing the Rapidan on December 2. On March 20, he was sent to Parole camp at Annapolis, arrived there March 22 and was quartered "in the 2d Batallion." On March 26 mentions 600 more prisoners coming "up from Bell Isle." On April 3, he heard "preaching in the chappel by a nigger minister" and on April 4, went to work in the Hospital. On April 30, he "was mustered as a Sergeant." On May 6 he states: "Two years ago yesterday had our first fight with the Rebs at Wmsburg." Lee left Annapolis on May 15, and went from Alexandria by boat part of the way and then marched to Fredericksburg and encamped on May 23, and reached his regiment on May 26. They "recrossed the North Anna River" on May 27, and the Pamunkey on May 28, and engaged in skirmishes. On May 31, he mentions being "wounded in the hip" but marched about 2 miles the next day and engaged in fighting intermittently for several days (June 2-11).

On June 14 they crossed to South side of James River and engaged in fighting June 16-19. On June 20, were "relieved this evening by colored troops." Fighting again June 22-26. On July 2, he writes: "Drew Clothing. Made out Clothing Returns, started to dig a well. Received a letter from Gussie Coddington." On July 27, crossed James River and had skirmish and recrossed James and Appomattox next day. On August 9, writes "Nearly all the ammunition at City Point blew up today. Killing and wounding about 300 persons." On August 12, moved to City Point. On August 25, mentions heavy fighting on the Weldon Railroad. On August 28, 1864, "turned in our arms and equipments at the ordnance dept." Throughout Lee mentions receiving and writing letters, picketing and fighting, receiving supplies, performing clerical duties for his own and other companies, such as: making out pay rolls, muster rolls, casualty lists, clothing returns, descriptive rolls, and copying orders. He comments on the weather, visitors to camp, inspections, leaves and recreation, pro-motions and transfers, false alarms and rumors.

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