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Title: Excerpts from the Letter of Charles P. Mallett to Charles B. Mallett, April 18, 1865 : Electronic Edition.
Author: Mallett, Charles Peter, 1792-1873
Editor: Erika Lindemann
Funding from the State Library of North Carolina supported the electronic publication of this title.
Text transcribed by Erika Lindemann
Images scanned by Mara E. Dabrishus
Text encoded by Amanda Page
First Edition, 2005
Size of electronic edition: ca. 26K
Publisher: The University Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
2005
© This work is the property of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It may be used freely by individuals for research, teaching and personal use as long as this statement of availability is included in the text
The electronic edition is a part of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill digital library, Documenting the American South.
Languages used in the text: English
Revision history:
2005-05-19, Amanda Page finished TEI/XML encoding.
Part of a series:
This transcribed document is part of a digital collection, titled True and Candid Compositions: The Lives and Writings of Antebellum Students in North Carolina
written by Lindemann, Erika
Source(s):
Title of collection: C. B. Mallett Papers (#3165), Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Title of document: Excerpts from the Letter of Charles P. Mallett to Charles B. Mallett, April 18, 1865
Author: Mallett, Charles Peter, 1792-1873
Description: 11 pages, 11 page images
Note: Call number 3165 (Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)
Topics covered:
Education/UNC Enrollments and Finances
Politics and Government/Government and Governing Bodies
War/Civil War
Writings by Non-Students
Editorial practices
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Transcript of the personal correspondence. Originals are in the Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
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For more information about transcription and other editorial decisions, see Dr. Erika Lindemann's explanation under the section Editorial Practices.

Document Summary

Mallett's letter-diary details for his son the occupation of Chapel Hill, NC, by Union forces. The college remains in session as news arrives of Pres. Lincoln's assassination, Gen. Lee's surrender at Appomattox, VA, and Gen. Johnston's surrender to Gen. Sherman near Durham, NC.
Excerpts from the Letter of Charles P. Mallett to Charles B. Mallett , April 18, 18651
Mallett, Charles Peter, 1792-1873



Page 1
Chapel Hill 18th April 65

My Dear Son

[. . .]

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[. . .] I was at Church in the afternoon [Easter Sunday, April 16]. Mr [Andrew] Mickle called out, and when I met him in the street, found that another parolled prisoner

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from Lees Army had come in, and reported the Yankees approaching in force on the town road, which of course produced great excitement The citizens met and appointed a committee to meet them and ask a safeguard;2 between sun down and dark some forty or fifty under a Lieut 3 —came dashing into the village and enquired for Wheelers men—some few seperated from the others and behaved badly, took away some watches &c; but when the Lt was informed he called them off, and returned to the Head Quarters, appointing 8 oclock the next morning to meet the Army, and make our terms. I was on the committee, and if Gov Swain did nothing more on his mission, he procured favorable terms for Raleigh and Chapel Hill. Monday 17. the committee met the column on the Hill were very courteously received by Genl. Atkins who upon being assured that all of Wheelers men had gone, and that no resistance would be made, called a halt, and informed us, that his orders were positive to respect all private property; (provisions and forage excepted)—Seeing many of the men break the lines, I remarked to Genl

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that those men would rush in and pillage before the regular guard could be arranged; he then gave orders to a Michigan Col. to take his Regt with speed into the village and protect every house that desired it; and by the time we came back through the efforts of your Brother and some others guards were soon established and besides the watches and some bacon hams I have heard of nothing to complain of up to the present writing, and whilst I write, my safeguard is indulging in a sound snoring sleep in my large easy chair [. . .]

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Friday morning 21st—fifth day of occupation—I feel provoked to hear the college bell sounding on as though the college was in full blast—a miserable set— not one true man among them and they desire to hand it down in History that the dear Yankees, did not interfere with the regular exercise of the college—when in truth there were not five students here when Wheeler left us. Gov. Swain has over five hundred bus[hels] of corn, and I learn that he has lost nothing. Mr Wright 4 is

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the greatest sufferer I have heard of Mr Mickles deposites have been rifled loosing his coin—silver—watches &c; of his own, and some entrusted to him by others. up to a late hour yesterday no tidings had been received from or of Judge Person.5 Genl. Atkins who is in command is a Gentleman and a Lawyer, and he told Judge [William] Battle yesterday—that he should return home without the slightest evidence of his ever having been south, but his commission that he had not the value of one cent of spoil, and certainly he has used great effort to suppress pillage and wrong, by allowing a guard to the most humble applicant and even to the Doctors woman Judy. I am now feeling anxious about our bacon which has been under ground ten days, could I have foreseen it—I would have left it in the smoke house—where no one has offered to look:   [. . .]

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Sunday, 23d—Seventh day of occupation The College Bell rang for prayers as usual. I know there is but one in the Senior and one in the junior classes,6 and I am credibly informed there is but one other student in college. We will see, (maybe) what the Faculty will publish on the subject. every thing quiet and I hear of nothing wrong in the village. Young Ladies are getting over their fright—and becoming quite sociable—I learn that Misses Fetters7 are walking the streets with them, and

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Miss Ella Swain sent to Carrie8 to borrow her side saddle to write ride out with some officer—Several other Ladies—or I would rather call them women—have been riding out with them. A rumour was current yesterday, that articles had been signed—restoring the Union &c; &c.;9 of course we cannot know yet— Lincoln's death is not believed— Mary's man Sitter has been seen at Durhams. [. . .]

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Tuesday morning, 25th April, 9th day of occupation What can be more ridiculous than the continued ding dong of the College bell for prayers and all the usual recitation hours, when there are now but one Senior and one junior in College—and besides in my usual walks to visit Anna and Mary10 I pass through the campus and between the college buildings, and I can always hear the Yankees at nine pins or some other such game on the several floors and passages—and stories, as well of the [c]ollege buildings as of the Chapel itself. I asked Joe Mickle yesterday to go out and see Miss Mary Smith , which he did and reports things in a better condition, although she has been pillaged of of every thing, all her bed and table linen and towells not one left. having a guard she is in better spirits and more composed and has had supplies sent to her [. . .]

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My guard has just come in—says the camp rumours confirm the death of Lincoln on 14th and that the man escaped, that Andy Johnson refused to accept the terms of capitulation &c; &c;—says that Kilpatrick is to be here to day, for review—and they hope to leave tomorrow. I would much prefer they were here, than 10 miles off, when we should be subject to continued raids. My guard also informs me, (and he believes it) that his captain is to be married before they leave to Miss Fetter —certainly those girls with Beck Ryan and Ella Swain have lain themselves open to much scandel—I have just seen John Patterson, who is immediately from Durhams, where he saw the Philadelphia enquirer of the 17, in which is a full account of the killing of Lincoln which was done by a son of Booth, the Magician—the same paper also announces the death of Sewards son, and that Seward is not expected to recover from his wounds.11 Johnsons terms of capitulation were not accepted, and a flag of truce went up the road yesterday to meet him—I have seen a young man, who went off with the Doctors wagon; he says they

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were safe yesterday morning about twenty five miles from here—and that Wheeler and Johnson are disbanding their men—that the whole country is covered with parties returning home the best way they can—are selling good mules and horses at $15. to $20. each. [. . .]12

Endnotes:

2. The committee consisted of Gov. David Swain , Judge William H. Battle , Professor Manuel Fetter , and merchants John W. Carr, Andrew Mickle, and Charles P. Mallett . Swain had experience with such negotiations, having met with Gen. Sherman in Goldsboro, NC, the previous week to request that Raleigh and the University be spared.

3. "Capt. J. M. Schermerhorn of the 92nd Illinois Cavalry led 12 men into town" (Vickers 72).

4. William A. Wright , a Wilmington lawyer and president of the Bank of Cape Fear, had sought refuge in Chapel Hill, bringing with him watches, coins, silver, gold, and other articles that people had entrusted to him for safekeeping.

5. Probably Richmond Mumford Pearson (1805-78) of Rowan (now Davie) County, NC.

6. Though fourteen students began the year as seniors, only William Curtis Prout (b. 1848) from Williamsboro, NC, completed the year, and only three other seniors returned to Chapel Hill to receive their degrees during the 1865 Commencement. Battle reports that by early June 1865 "No Junior was present at the examination of this year. Five represented the Sophomore Class, and only two Freshmen" (1:748).

7. Sarah Cox and Manuel Fetter were the parents of three daughters: Susan, Catherine (Kate), and Martha.

8. Probably Caroline Eliza Mallett (1842-1929).

9. Gen. Sherman had granted Gen. Johnston terms intended to return both the North and the South to the same relationship that had existed before the Civil War, but on April 24th, Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, meeting Sherman in Raleigh, informed him that the terms were not acceptable in Washington, that Johnston could receive only the same terms offered Gen. Robert E. Lee—that the fighting would stop.

10. Probably Anna Moore Ashe (1795-1880?).

11. The plot to assassinate President Lincoln included a separate attack by John Wilkes Booth's co-conspirators on the home of William Henry Seward (1801-72), US Secretary of State (1861-69). Seward was stabbed, and his son Frederick William Seward(1830-1915) sustained a fractured skull in protecting his father. Father and son both recovered, and the elder Seward accompanied President Andrew Johnson to Chapel Hill for the 1866 Commencement exercises.

12. Mallett continued his letter-journal through April 29, 1865, commenting on the disbanding of Gen. Johnston's army, "a disposition on the part of our servants" to leave, efforts to recover property hidden prior to the occupation of Chapel Hill, and concerns about his sons still with the Confederate army.