64th Ohio soldier writes about Franklin battle

Note: the 64th Ohio (at Franklin) was part of Wagner’s Division, 3rd Brigade (Col. Joseph Conrad), Stanley’s 4th Corps.

Sarah V. Elder Dicken Papers
Transcripts of Correspondence, September – December 1864

Camp Near Columba Tenn
Dcmber 21st/64

Mr L. Cessna

Dear Sir with my wife requested I shal tri to drop you a few lines too let you know that I am well & feel prety well on this campagne that is in progress at this present time & with the ide of Jeneral Hoods retreate towards the tennasee river well now there I shal tri too tell you a litle of our retrie from Pulaki too Nashville Tenn we had a prety good road too gow on that was some thing shre they mad us make quick time of it we travelled a bout 20 or 25 miles prday the distents between Nash & Pulaki was 75 miles we got a long as far as too spring hill firste till the Johneys trid too flank us there we had a quite a dandy old fight there with the mounted infantry the rather flanked us they on the a count of there haven a bout 6 too wone of us then dooring the knight we fell back too Franklin there we had another trille of it that is a trile that proved a perfect slater too the Johnneys all though we had a good maney of our very bravest boys killed then we had old Peter Sarge killed thare & a great maney others killed that well this ends this. then we lit out for Nashville then we went in too camp there for a few days & all this time the Johnneys tride too get in their town thru old Jeneral Hood told these men that if they would take the sity that he would dress them all in the darnd Yankeys clothe that is all officers uniforms there four they fought like tiger but Jeneral Thomas took them on the flank which did knot aggee with ther system. the fight commenced on our write flank on the morning of the 18 & we flanked theme out of there works on that side the uncore while our lines war 7 mils long there four we had 2 days prety hard fighting sow hard that the first to charge that we made on the firste day we gave back for a bout 1 hour thin hour darkess made a desperate charge on there lefte of them we wated in & gobleed a bout 5 thousand of them then they began too lite out of there hideing plases & know we have bin after them for a few days & have bin taken prisners every day untill too day But our cavlery is after there prety keen in all of the prisners that we had taken will amount too a bout 12 or 15 thousand But I cannot tell anything to the the sertenty a bout that for (—-) have the papers thare & they can tell you the beste a Bout that therfour I will leave that subject with them & You too get a long with as well as you can well as for a chap too tell you a bout those 3 battles I was in them all But wone & than wone was at franklin

the wreason that I was knot in that Batle was this I was on guard the knight befour at spring hill & the regment left me in the rear too guard them too Franklen the teemes there I got threw before the fight commenced there four you can see that I was knot in too it but they all said that was the hardest fight of the 3. I was a litle sorrow that I was knot their But I looked on & wished our men well & I think that it was granted by the old gentleman that is a looking on with a long eye & says gow in yankeys the day is hours, yet all though the time of retreite that we just have ben a gowing there befour we gained the day over Jeneral Hood I thing that he is a litle demoralised I think that if thay would chase us like we have chaste them I think that but little fighitng they would get out of those yankeys of this department well I think that this will suffice for the firste leter knot knowing the sircumstances of your sittuation I think that I will half too close all though perhaps I did knot give you but little satisfaction about hour march & times that we have had all though I think that I could give you a prety good histry of it Bt time will not admitt it I will do bete the next time thus I will close I hope that those few lines will knot demoralise you sow that you will knot forget too write too me then I will close hoping too hear from you all soon but tell Tip too drop a line too me this is all \r & parley done

write soon

I Still remain yours as ever

JH Dicken

Directions & inspections
Co Your leters too
Co A 64 Ohio OVI
3 Brigade 2 Division
Harney Corps
VIA Nashville

At the time of the Civil War Joshua Dicken served initially with the 3 month service of Co.H, 21st Ohio Volunteer Infantry. Then in Sept. 1861 he joined Co.K, 49th O.V.I, (being discharged on disability the following year). He was later drafted at the age of 26 on Sept. 29, 1864 for 1 year service with Co.A, 64th O.V.I.


Edited section of his letter related to Franklin (correcting grammar and spelling):

…. we got along as far as Spring Hill first till the Johnny’s (Johnny Rebs) tried to flank us there. We had a quite a dandy old fight there with the mounted infantry. They flanked us there on account of them having about six to one of us. Then during the night (Nov 30th) we fell back to Franklin where we had another thrill of it, that is, a thrill that proved a perfect slaughter to the Johnnies, although we had a good many of our very bravest boys killed. Old Peter Sorg was killed there and a great many others killed.

– Joshua Dicken, Co.A, 64th O.V.I. Written on December 21st near Columbia, Tenn., just five days after fighting in the battle of Nashville, and three weeks after fighting at Franklin.

In his original letter Dickens says that Peter Sarge was killed. The correct name is Peter Sorg. Sorg was 43 years old when he enlisted on 9/27/64. He was a member of Company A, with Dickens.

Reference notes:  Jacobson, Sword nor McDonough refer to Dickens or this letter.

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