Josiah Robert Peele Ellis Papers, 1977

Manuscript Collection #566

  • Descriptive Summary
    Title: Josiah Robert Peele Ellis Papers
    Creator: Ellis, Josiah Robert Peele
    Johnston, Hugh Buckner
    Repository: ECU Manuscript Collection
    Language: English
    Abstract: Papers include photocopies of transcriptions of correspondence (1863-1864) written by Josiah Robert Peele Ellis of Wilson Co., North Carolina, to his wife Elizabeth Grimes Ellis while he was serving in Company C of the 43rd N.C. Infantry Regiment during the Civil War. The letters were transcribed in 1977 by Hugh Buckner Johnston who also provided supplementary information. Also included are genealogy records for the Ellis and Hill families of Eastern North Carolina.
    Extent: 0.055 Cubic feet, 51 photocopy pages, consisting of transcribed letters, supplementary information, and genealogy.
  • Description

    The transcribed letters and the introduction to the letters prepared in 1977 by Hugh Buckner Johnston of Wilson, N.C., trace the movement and engagements of the 43rd Regiment from November 26, 1863, to November 22, 1864. Johnston also provides eight pages of footnotes identifying the names of people and places mentioned in the letters.

    All of the letters were written by Ellis to his wife Elizabeth Grimes Ellis. He tells of the cold, hunger, and exhaustion experienced in camp and on marches. He describes battles at Batchelor's Creek (near New Bern) and Plymouth, North Carolina, as well as fighting in Virginia around Richmond and at "Modern Ford." He mentions the hanging of seven deserters at Kinston and gives a casualty report on the regiment after a battle in the Richmond area.

    Most of the letters contain instructions to his wife on managing the farm and financial affairs, with frequent cautions to be sparing with supplies, especially corn. Encouraging comments to his children are also included from time to time. Ellis mentions that he could be released from service if he had legal assistance but sees no hope of this happening.

    In his last letter Ellis describes himself as "broken down" by the hardships of the continuing war. The final letter in the collection is from the regiment's surgeon telling Mrs. Ellis of her husband's almost certain death.

    Additional material in the collection includes genealogy records for the Hill and Ellis families of Eastern North Carolina.

  • Biographical / Historical Note

    Josiah Robert Peele Ellis of Wilson County, N.C., was drafted to serve in the Confederate Army in the last months of 1863. He joined Company C of the 43rd N.C. Infantry Regiment, leaving behind his wife and eleven children.

  • Related Collections

    The Confederate letters of Josiah Robert Peele Ellis of Wilson County, North Carolina, Joyner Library, North Carolina Collection, Joyner NC Stacks, E605 .E4X

  • Administrative Information
    Accessions Information

    December 12, 1988, 51 pages, photocopies; Typescript of Civil War letters of Wilson County, N.C., resident (1863-1864) and genealogy. Gift of Mrs. Martha Edwards Croom, Stantonsburg, N.C.

    Acquisition Information

    Gift of Mrs. Martha Edwards Croom

    Access Restrictions

    No restrictions

    Copyright Notice

    Literary rights to specific documents are retained by the authors or their descendants in accordance with U.S. copyright law.

    Preferred Citation

    Josiah Robert Peele Ellis Papers (#566), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.

    Processing Information

    Processed by L. Yoder, February 1989

    Encoded by Apex Data Services

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Sensitive Materials Statement

Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations, the North Carolina Public Records Act (N.C.G.S. § 132 1 et seq.), and Article 7 of the North Carolina State Personnel Act (Privacy of State Employee Personnel Records, N.C.G.S. § 126-22 et seq.). Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection, without the consent of those individuals, may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which East Carolina University assumes no responsibility.

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