36th Illinois Infantry

Join the 36th Illinois in conjunction with 40 Rounds, the Independent Rifles and Mess #1 at the Last Letter Home immersion event, May 14th-16th 2021. We will focus on the events near Dallas Ga in May of 1864 and portray the 24th Wisconsin opposed by the 16th Louisiana and Austin’s Bttn. Sharpshooters.
Join the 36th Illinois in conjunction with 40 Rounds, the Independent Rifles and Mess #1 at the Last Letter Home immersion event, May 14th-16th 2021. We will focus on the events near Dallas Ga in May of 1864 and portray the 24th Wisconsin opposed by the 16th Louisiana and Austin’s Bttn. Sharpshooters.

BACKGROUND

In May of 1864 the Campaign for Atlanta was in full swing. As Sherman advances toward Altoona, it becomes apparent that the Confederates are well dug in and it will be a costly fight. Making a flanking movement toward Dallas Ga., Joseph Johnstons’ Confederates are forced to redeploy on a line stretching from Dallas to the east on an 8-mile line past New Hope Church and Pickets Mill. On the 25th, the Federal 20th Corps makes an attack on the Confederate positions at New Hope Church and are repulsed. The Federal 4th corps that has been rushing to support this attack is slowed by the wounded choking the roads but arrives late that night and begins to entrench. The fighting along this line went on for over a week and is not included as part of the battles of New Hope Church or Pickets Mill. The men writing from the rifle pits simply wrote NEAR DALLAS.

Letter of Pvt. John Green Co. F 36thIllinois Camp of the 36thIll Vols

Near Dallas Dear Friend Susanna H

I take a few leisure moments to let you know that I am well after three weeks of hard campaigning. The enemy has been in retreat and with the help of God we shall win our cause for it is just. We are very near the Rebs and we have dug us good rifle pits. We have been under fire for days but whenever there is a pause in the fighting we are close enough to the enemy lines to talk to them. We have had many men wounded also and they are under treatment at the Division Hospital about one mile to the rear of the line of battle. Lt. Southworth was recently wounded in the arm but he is recuperating well, at least the surgeon said that he will recover. This close quarters with the Johnnies is really bad for the nerves and there is a lot of sickness in the Camp mostly diarrhea but also nervous exhaustion. God willing soon this terrible ordeal will be over and we all can come home to our loved ones. I am tired of the fighting as I have had enough. Remember me to all my friends. I remain your devoted admirer.

John Green Co. "F"
Private John F. Green was killed during the fight Near Dallas, likely the same day he wrote this LAST LETTER HOME.

EXPECTATIONS

What to expect at Last Letter Home. This Event will be a roughly 36 hour non stop recreation of a small part of the Atlanta campaign. We will be holding a lot of the details of this event close to our chest so keep an eye out for hints here in there ,but really we want you to be able to experience this with fresh eyes so don't expect to many spoilers. We are arranging horse drawn supply, fortifications, rations, wet plate photographers and tons more little details just for you. If you show up with the right uniform, equipment, and attitude you are gonna have a great time.

REGISTRATION

Registration for The Last Letter Home is open as of Friday the 15th of May 2020. In order to attend the event, you will need to be able to achieve the modest impression guidelines, follow some basic rules set by the organizers (and supported by the community at large), and be completely registered. What does it mean to be completely registered? You must complete the sign up in the registration form (follow this link), and pay the registration fee via Paypal.

Please look to the Facebook group - Last Letter Home Immersion Event 2021 for updates and additional photos, as well as links to other Facebook groups for the battalions and companies. We are gonna put on one hell of an event for you and raise some preservation money while we do it. Send your pard her to get Registered!

UNIT HISTORY

24th Wisconsin Infantry Regiment

This regiment, known as the ''Milwaukee Regiment,'' was organized at Camp Sigel, Milwaukee, and was mustered in at various dates from Aug. 15 to 21, 1862. It left the state Sept. 5, and reached Covington, Ky., on the 11th, whence it was sent to Louisville and assigned to the 37th brigade, 11th division.

It was first in action at the battle of Perryville, and of its conduct the brigade commander said: ''The 24th Wis. went forward with cheers and soon engaged the enemy's right, pouring in and keeping up a cross-fire which made sad havoc among them. This was the first brigade to break. * * * Both officers and men behaved with coolness and deliberation, marching to the front with the steadiness of veterans.''

The regiment proceeded to Crab Orchard and Bowling Green, reached Edgefield, near Nashville, on Nov. 8, and moved to Mill creek on the 22nd. It was engaged in the battle of Stone's River, losing 175 in killed, wounded and prisoners, after which it encamped at Murfreesboro until June.

In July and August it marched to Cowan, Tenn., and Bridgeport, Ala.; participated in the battle of Chickamauga, sustaining a loss of 105 in killed, wounded and missing; took an important part in the storming of Missionary Ridge, making the ascent under a heavy fire and carrying the enemy's position on the crest of the ridge, assisted in raising the siege of Knoxville, Tenn., and was then on guard duty until Jan. 15, 1864.

On the following day it dislodged the enemy from a piece of woods near Dandridge, and was then assigned to duty at division headquarters until May, when it joined the Atlanta movement.

On this campaign it was in action at Resaca and near Adairsville; was under fire at Dallas for 11 days; took part in the operations in front of Kennesaw Mountain; fought at Peachtree Creek, and was then on railroad, guard and garrison duty until Nov. 1.

It was with Gen. Thomas through Tennessee and Alabama during the fall, fought valiantly at Franklin one of the severest battles in which the regiment had been engaged and Gen. Stanley said: ''I will not absolutely say the 24th Wis. saved the battle of Franklin, but they had a great deal to do with saving it.''

It participated in the battle at Nashville in December and spent the remainder of the winter at Huntsville, Ala. It was mustered out at Nashville June 10, 1865.

Its original strength was 1,003. Gain by recruits, 74; total, 1,077. Loss by death, 173; desertion, 71; transfer, 138; discharge, 289; mustered out,406.

16th Louisiana Infantry Regiment

16th Infantry Regiment, organized during the fall of 1861 at Camp Moore, Louisiana, contained men from East Feliciana, Caddo, Livingston, Rapides, Bienville, St. Helena, and Avoyelles parishes. After fighting at Shiloh and Perryville, the unit was assigned to General D.W. Adams' and Gibson's Brigade, Army of Tennessee.

It was consolidated with the 25th Louisiana Regiment from December, 1862 until the late summer of 1864. The unit participated in the difficult campaigns of the army from Murfreesboro to Atlanta, moved with Hood to Tennessee, and shared in the defense of Mobile.

The regiment lost 14 killed, 48 wounded, and 27 missing at Shiloh, then the 16th/25th lost 37 killed, 159 wounded, and 17 missing of the 465 engaged at Murfreesboro and thirty-five percent of the 319 at Chickamauga. In December, 1863, it contained 265 men and 116 arms.

During the Atlanta Campaign, May 8-28, 1864, its casualties were 11 killed, 47 wounded, and 5 missing. During November, 1864, the 16th had 115 officers and men fit for duty. It surrendered with the Department of Alabama, Mississippi, and East Louisiana.

The field officers were Coloenls daniel Gober and Preston Pond, Jr.; Lieutenant Colonels Robert H. Lindsay, Enoch Mason, and W.E. Walker; and Majors Robert P. Oliver and Frank M. Raxsdale.