Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Company I 46th Regiment Indiana Volunteer Infantry: William F. Schofer Archive. Thirty-seven letters from Union teamster William F. Schofer to his wife and one letter written to him by his sister. He served with the 46th Regt. Ind. Infantry which fought primarily in Kentucky, Arkansas and Louisiana. Their significant engagements were Island No. 10, Port Gibson and Vicksburg. All but one date from 1861 to 1863, the sold exception being written January 28, 1866 from Camp Wickcliffe, Kentucky (dated mistakenly, likely written in 1862). Sixteen are written on patriotic stationery. The locales include: Camp Oakland in Louisville, Paducah, New Madrid, Helena, Camps Benton, Ruddle & Nelson, Vicksburg and on board a variety of steamers traveling the waters of the Mississippi. In part: "... the boys are all lively they are just itching for a fight we are now encamped on a secessions farm he is a general in Southern army... but now we are landed and we think we shall make the Rebbe devils git out of misarie and that before long to for the calculation is to have sixty thousand troops in the vicinity... the Rebels attacked our gun boats and sank two of them but they are raised and taken to Cairo to be repaired... We have had a hard fight on the first day of this month [May 1863] at Port Gibson. We fought two hours and fifteen minutes... on board Steamer Volunteer in Talahatchie on our road to Vicksburg to take them in the rear... Mr. George Martin had better enlist again if it pleases him to think the dam niggers are agoing to be set free. We never came out to fight to free negroes... We can not take vicksburg or Richmond and that looks very strange. We have been fighting 16 months... we have burnt most all the rails in Madrid County... when we first came in here the men stole hogs, calfs, sheep and any thing else they wanted but now they have put a stop to it... [two page description of a skirmish in which General Pope miscalculated and Union troops were attacked by Rebel gun boats]... our fife and drums are playing dixeys land for we are... not far from the enemy and we expect to have a brush with them soon... [at] Island No. 10... they throwed away their guns pistols knives and knapsacks and every thing they had for they run like Sam Hill. They were more scared than hurt but after all their runing we took 2500 prisoners... We have been up White River had a fight and took St Charles a small town in Arkansas and we lost quite a number of men on account of a ball entering the gun boat... they caught Mr Bushwacker that night and handed him over to the brother of the man killed and they tell me they tied him to a tree and shot him they say & made mincemeat of him." Apparently, at some point, Schofer was taken prisoner, then paroled. His superiors were unaware of this, believing him to be on "Detached Service". He was subsequently arrested, placed in irons in the guard house, but then sent back to his regiment. He mustered out on December 14, 1864. He had chronic health problems (ague) during the war, as well as difficulties handling money. He worked both as a teamster and a cook. Many of his letters to his wife deal with his health, the desire to go home, the delays in getting paid and the chronic lack of funds - the typical stuff.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    December, 2015
    12th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 389

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    25% on the first $100,000 (minimum $14), plus 20% of any amount between $100,000 and $1,000,000, plus 12% of any amount over $1,000,000 per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2021 May 19 Manuscripts Signature Auction - Dallas.

    Learn about consigning with us

    Heritage has gone above and beyond my expectations in handling all of my transactions in a thoroughly professional manner. I would not hesitate to recommend them to anyone worldwide for the exemplary auction and valuation services they provide.
    Richard H.,
    Corsicana, TX
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search