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Corporal Oscar Overman
Company B, 103rd Illinois Infantry
"I hope and pray as I said above that the coming Campaign will wind it up. Since we have been here, we have received one recruit, namely James Anno, son of Henry Anno, deceased. Jim will make a very good soldier by appearance, ..." Oscar Overman Dec 1863
I hope and pray as I said above that the coming Campaign will wind it up. Since we have been here, we have received one recruit, namely James Anno, son of Henry Anno, deceased. Jim will make a very good soldier by appearance, for he is well and in very good spirits, always ready for duty that is assigned him and we have also Joshua Hall. Again, I think he will stick to us. He seems satisfied and content to stay.
We have heard of the arrest of James Baker . Alls, the commanding officer of our Company received word of it and we may be looking for him in a few weeks. Such fellows we care little about after leaving as they did, but think they will be satisfied to hardly try it again. I would like to know what has become of W. T. Pratt , as I cannot hear anything of him anymore. His soldiering has not been much, but we cannot tell whether he will get clear yet or not. I would think they would feel better if they were with the Company, but I am no judge of their feelings.
I received a letter from Bushnell a few days ago, stating what good meetings they were having. I would like to attend some of them, but circumstances will not admit at present. I have heard of no series of meetings in Hickory. I suppose they have none. Mother wrote her health was not very good this winter. I hope she will recover by spring for I do not want to hear of her being so unwell.
Well, Em, I have been trying to write all the afternoon and now it is about sundown and I have wrote nothing of importance and will try to close by asking a little favor of you. It may seem strange, but nevertheless, I mean it. Before Henry and I sent our likeness, you was repeatedly begging—and now after so long a time, I, poor unworthy me, wish you to grant me the same favor—without any words about it. The first time you can write, enclose the miniature, and all will be satisfactory. Words will be of no use. It will only be the delay the longer and now I will close. Hoping as this leaves me in good health it will find you in the enjoyment of the same. Do not fail, but let me hear from you soon. You may think strange of my writing so, but still I always write my feelings under any circumstances.
P.S. As soon as convenient, let me hear from you and also see the image of yourself. From a sincere friend in the Army—Oscar.
P.S. Look over poor writing for I am in a hurry and am writing under very inconvenient circumstances.
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Submitter: Sherri Cawley
In this letter, Corporal Overman writes to his good friend, Emma Wadsworth, about how much more he appreciates their friendship since he left home for the Army. Corporal Oscar Overman served until the end of the war. He enlisted on August 14, 1862, and mustered into Company B 103rd Illinois Infantry. He mustered out on June 21, 1865. This letter was written less than two months after he mustered out. As if the war wasn't enough, when he returned home to Illinois there was a serious outbreak of Typhoid. His family members were sick and dying.
Oscar Overman and his Regiment sailed on the steamer Rocket from Cairo for Columbus Kentucky, where the Regiment was again placed on cars and at night arrived at Bolivar, Tenn., having made the trip from Peoria, Illinois in 52 hours. The first year's service of the regiment was devoted to marching, guard duty, etc., in northern Mississippi and Tennessee but in November 1863, it participated in the battle of Missionary ridge. Eight companies of the regiment were in the engagement, mustering 237 men, and of this number 1 commissioned officer and 19 enlisted men were killed on the field, and 68 were wounded, 5 or 6 of whom died of their wounds. The regiment began its part of the Atlanta campaign at Resaca, where it lost 1 man killed and several wounded.
Brian Brown, author of In the Footsteps of the Blue and Gray: A Civil War Research Handbook which can be purchased from ABE Books kindly sends the following information:
Oscar F. Overman, B, 103 Ill Inf.
enlisted 8/17/62 at Young Hickory Illinois
mustered in 10/2/62 at Peoria
Age 21, height 5-9; lt hair; blue eyes; fair complexion;
single; farmer born Young Hickory, Illinois.
enlistment in Young Hickory Illinois (Fulton Co.) discharged
6/31/65 at Louisville Ky. with the final rank of corporal
In 1875(?) he applied for and received an invalid's pension,
certificate #136651 In 1909, his widow Charity R. received
pension certificate 676557. She was living in Kansas at the
On the 1860 Illinois census, Fulton County, Young Hickory,
Thomas Shreeves(?) 77 farmer born Maryland
Margaret Shreeves 47 born NC
Oscar Overman 18
Mary Overman 15 born ILL
John Overman 12
Tessa Overman 11 born ILL (This looks like Oscar's
mother has been widowed and remarried)
In the 1870 census of Miami Co., Kansas, St. Marysville,
page 531 I find:
Overman, Oscar 28 farmer ILL
Charity R. 26 OH
Charles 2 KS
Frederick 1/12 KS
Read the Overman Letters:
6 Jan 1863 on Steamer Rocket |
6 May 1863 |