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United States. Army. Ohio Infantry Regiment, 21st - MS 562: Transcripts

Transcripts - Box 13: J. H. Bolton

August 14, 1888

Findlay, Ohio August 14th 1888

Col A. W. McMahan

Toledo O.

Your esteemed favor came to hand some time ago requestion me to state to you what I know about the 26th Tennessee (rebel) Regiments colors captured by our troops at the Battle of Stone River.

Pressing business engagements and more or less absence from home prevented me from sending you a prompt reply, consequently your letter remained unanswered, but I will now relate to you briefly my recollections although the lapse of over a quarter of a century may have left its mark upon my memory as regards distance \r & c but the statement I here send you regarding the capture of the flag is a true one in every respect.

On the second day of January 1863 after we had crossed the river and were driving the rebels up the hill through the woods under a heavy fire, and a moment before our regiment (21st O. V. I.) captured the rebel battery, whilst advanceing we were passing over large numbers of dead and wounded of both federal and confederate, and about a hundred yards as near as I can recollect to right of the rebel battery captured by our regiment and only a short distance in the woods before we entered the open field (corn field) is as near as I can describe the location where while we were advanceing under a brisk fire, I saw laying on the ground before me a dead rebel with a flag by his side. I picked up the flag and saw it belonged to the 26th Tennessee Regt and intended to bring it with me, but at once comprehended, that it was impossible to use my musket and carry the flag with me, so I hurriedly threw it down by the side of the dead rebel where I had found it, and proceeded along with the Regt until we came to a halt out in the open field, when I returned to get the flag, but when I got there it had been taken away by some one else, there is no quesiton but the color bearer fell from a shot fired by some one of our regiment but who fired that shot will undoubtedly never be known. I will here add that I honestly believe that no one person in particular is entitled to the credit of capturing that flat, but one thing is certain that the credit for the capture of it belongs to the 21st Regiment Ohio Vol Infy

Trusting the above narrator regarding my observations and knowledge of the capture of this flag may be of some advantage to you in your history I remain

Yours Truly

J.H. Bolton

May 30, 1889

Findlay Ohio May 30 - 1889

Col A. W. McMahan
Dear Sir

Please accept thanks for "Daily Commercial" containing your article in reply to certain errors contained in last Saturdays Commercial Gazette written by Genl Boynten and quoting Lieut Vance quite freely. Mr. Vance was in my office a late hour yesterday evening and informed of your corrections and expressed himself as being highly pleased in having the responsibility placed where it properly belongs.

It looks now as if history would eventually give the credit for the heroic deference of that historic hill on the eventful sunday afternoon Sep 20, 1863 to the regiment that above all others held the key to the position and defended the same with a valor and heroism scarcely equaled in the annals of history. Permit me here to say your article is well put in the right time and place and goes far towards correcting the false claims of other to the honors achieved by the old veterans of the 21st Ohio on the historic field of Chicamauga.

With many regards
I remain Yours & c
J. H. Bolton

July 10, 1889

[Letterhead]J. H. Bolton's
Old Reliable
Real Estate and Fire Insurance Agency
313 S. Main St.,
Findlay, Ohio, July 10th 1889

Col A. W. McMahan

Dear Sir

Your favor of the 8th has just been received and in reply will briefly say that I will endeavor to see a number of the members of Co. B and get all the information I can regarding the different parties named in your list.

Sergeant Phillips Willich at present resides in Bluffton Allen Co. Ohio and will also send him a copy of your list and request him to give us all the information he can and soon as the same is received will send it to you.

I wish to add a few words here in reply to your former letter written some time ago. That there certainly is a greater effort on the part of Gen Boynton & others to get the top of Snod Grass Hill since the battle on that eventful Sunday than Gen Longstreet made when he attacked us and I know that I shall never question the fighting qualitites of Longstreet's command, but if Gen Boynton keeps on he will be on top of the hill. Gen Longstreet made a devil of a mistake in not securing Boynton's services, long before the battle took place, because he undoubtedly would have "quilled" us out of our position and took the place.

I will further say that when the time comes that you see fit to open up your historical battery, about one good "broad side" volley will knock out their frail false bottomed craft and leave them afloat without a rudder to steer them ashore.

But right here I am reminded of the remark in your former letter about the shot gun and pen both being rather dangerous weapons and think if more prudent to take heed and not say too much.

Trusting this may find you well, I remain as ever
Yours Resepectfully,
J. H. Bolton

September 7, 1889

[Letterhead]J. H. Bolton's
Old Reliable
Real Estate and Fire Insurance Agency
313 S. Main St.,
Findlay, Ohio, September 7th 1889

Col McMahan

Dear Sir

I sometime ago sent Sergt Willich your list of names with request to furnish such information as was desired; but up to the present time I have not heard from him, consequently I got the information contained in the answer to your queries on the enclosed sheet, from Robert Timmerman, who was a member of Co "B" and a veteran, was with us clear through all the campaigns and I believe the information is very near correct.

The answers to your queries are those of Mr Timmerman. I noted them after the respective names on the sheet you sent me which I return herewith for your convenience.

Yours respectfully
J. H. Bolton

September 12, 1889

[Letterhead]J. H. Bolton's
Old Reliable
Real Estate and Fire Insurance Agency
313 S. Main St.,
Findlay, Ohio, September 12th 1889

Dear Colonel,

Your favor of the 11th just at hand and will briefly state that the post office address of Capt. J. L. Keller is "Jeneria, Hancock Co Ohio where he resides on a farm and we seldom succeed in interesting him in any of the old veterans. In regard to Co. "D" Lieut Christian B. Sholty belonged to "D" from some time in Feb, "64 if I mistake not, and was with the company until mustered out. He resides near McComb Ohio on a farm and I believe he could furnish you valuable information regarding the members of Co "D."

The old french sergeant Celestine Crochard of "D" is living on a farm near "Pandora," Putnam Co. Ohio and as he was one of the old stand by veterans of that Co. I have good reasons to believe that a line addressed to him would prove an advantage to you in secureing information relative to members of that Company.

Wishing you success in your historical enterprise I remain Yours Respectfully

J. H. Bolton

MS 562: Introduction | Transcript List
MS 562 Series Description: MS 562: Introduction | 86th O.V.I. Records | Arnold McMahan Papers
MS 562 Abstracts: Part 1 (McMahan Correspondence) | Part 2 (Box 12) | Part 3 (Box 13) | Inventory
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