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Civil War Resources in the Special Collections Research Center

The Special Collections Research Center has extensive holdings of manuscripts and rare books dealing with the American Civil War. This guide describes the bulk of those holdings, although it is not a comprehensive list.

Access Tools

Special Collections Research Center Access Tools: There are a variety of tools available to guide you in finding materials in the Special Collections Research Center (SCRC). Don't forget that you also may come into the SCRC in person and consult with the staff member on duty for guidance.

Individual Items

MsV D24 Harriette Cary Diary, 1862.
Kept 6 May-23 July 1862, concerning the occupation of Williamsburg by Union troops following the Battle of Williamsburg.

MsV D29 Robert C. DeCordy Diary, 1863.
Diary, 5 October-21 November 1863, of DeCordy acting as 3rd assistant engineer, U.S.S. Philadelphia, while the steamer was serving in the Union blockade squadron near Charleston, S.C. Volume includes sketches of maps of Charleston, sketches of ships; and newspaper clippings relating to the siege of Charleston.

MsV D26 Laura Lee Diary, 1862-1865.
Diary kept in Winchester, Va. entitled, "A History of Our Captivity," discussing in detail movements of and occupation by Union forces. The volume also includes lists of persons who died during the Civil War. The material can also be viewed on microfilm: Laura Lee Diary, Winchester, VA 1862-1865, in Swem Library’s microforms area, 1 reel, call number E605 .L44. Also see Swem Rare Books F234 .W8 C48 2002 for Winchester Divided : the Civil War Diaries of Julia Chase and Laura Lee / edited by Michael G. Mahon.

MsV Sc15 Cassie Moncure Lyne Scrapbook, ca. 1930-1943.
Most material relates to United States history (especially the Civil War).

MsV Af25 Oversize John H. Lupton Account Book, 1816-1875.
Included in this account book of a merchant and farmer are Civil War notes, 1861-1862, concerning feeding the troops, the Union occupation of Winchester on 12 March 1862, and Stonewall Jackson and his men.

MsV Ap25 Samuel Mething Account Book, 1856-1865.
Memoranda and account book kept at Selma, [Allegheny County, Va.?] which includes records for Confederate states, 1863-1865, concerning iron furnace and slaves.

MsV Sc16 Frank H. Miller Scrapbook, ca. 1862-1865.
Kept by an attorney in Augusta County, [Ga.?] and contains newspaper clippings concerning compulsory military service in the Confederate Army.

MsV Mi12 New York Infantry. 5th Regiment. Monument Commission. Minute Book, 1905-1906.
Minutes of meetings of commission organized to erect a monument to "Duryea's Zouaves" at Bull Run battlefield under authorization of New York State Legislature. Includes black and white photographs of site, monument, gate and commission officers.

MsV Sc27  Scrapbook (Portsmouth, Va.)
Contains newspaper clippings and includes a handwritten note about the evacuation of Portsmouth, Va. and Norfolk, Va. in 1862.

MsV D23 F.N. Walker Diary, 1862.
Kept, 21 January-8 June 1862, while serving as captain of 3rd S.C. volunteers in which he discusses what he is reading; news he hears of battles and marching from Manassas, Va. (including a visit to the battlefield of First Bull Run) to the vicinity of Yorktown and Williamsburg, Va. Online at

SC 00589 J. Andy Wallace Pass, 1863.
Wallace Military pass, 30 June 1863, for [?] issued by order of S.D. Bruce and signed by J. Andy Wallace, lieutenant and provost marshall, Clarksville, Tenn.

MsV Ap39 William Edward Wiatt Account Book, 1856-1881.
Kept while serving as a chaplain in the 26th Virginia Infantry Regiment. Includes records of books lent to soldiers. (Wiatt's diary has been printed as Confederate Chaplain William Edward Wiatt. Lynchburg: H.E. Howard, 1994. E 635 W52 1994

SC 00598 Thomas J. Woodward Letter to his Sister
Written, 28 February 1865, on board the ironclad Atlanta, James River, to his sister concerning fighting along the James River.

MsV D22 Asa John Wyatt Diary, 1861-1862.
Diary, 19 June 1861-29 July 1862, detailing marches of the 21st Virginia Infantry Regiment in the spring of 1862 (the latter as part of Jackson's Valley Campaign). Includes information concerning the Battle of Kernstown although Wyatt was not a participant. Typescript available and also printed in Lucille Rebecca Douglass Wyatt, The Wyatt Family Records (Richmond: Dietz Press, 1957). Also online at