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A. S. Williams III Americana Manuscript Collections

Guide to A Georgia Soldier in the Civil War, 1861-1865 W.0083

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Publication:

University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

Box 870266
Tuscaloosa, Alabama, 35487-0266
205.348.0500
archives@ua.edu

November 2013

Creation:

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2014-01-02T10:55-0600

Language Usage:

English

Description Rules:

Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Collection Title:

A Georgia Soldier in the Civil War, 1861-1865

Unit ID:

W.0083

Repository:

University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

Quantity:

0.1 Linear feet

Dates:

1929

Location:

The A. S. Williams III Americana Collection, Amelia Gayle Gorgas Library, The University of Alabama

Abstract:

Contains an unbound manuscript of Robert Duncan Chapman's published Civil War memoir.

creator

Chapman, R. D., 1839-1934

creator

Williams, A. S., III

Acquisition Information:

Gift of A. S. Williams III, 2010

Access Restrictions:

None

Processing Information:

Processed by

Haley Aaron, 2013

Preferred Citation:

A Georgia Soldier in the Civil War, 1861-1865, A. S. Williams III Americana Collection, University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

Related Archival Materials note

The A. S. Williams III Americana Collection also holds a published copy of Chapman's Civil War memoir.

Scope and Contents note

This unbound, sixty-eight page manuscript of Robert Duncan Chapman's Civil War memoir, A Georgia Soldier in the Civil War, 1861-1865, describes his war experiences from his enlistment in August 1861 until 1865 as a member of the Fifty-fifth Georgia Infantry.

Chapman describes his capture at the Battle of Cumberland Gap and his subsequent imprisonment at Johnson's Island, Ohio. Chapman was a prisoner at Johnson's Island for five months when he staged an escape and impersonated a book salesman to avoid recapture.

Chapman's memoir was first published in 1922. The memoir was published again in 1929 and included an updated postscript written by the then ninety-year-old Chapman. The manuscript contains the postscript written in 1929 and some minor handwritten edits.

General note

Title on Spine: A Georgia Soldier in the Civil War, R. P. Chapman.

Biographical/Historical note

Robert Duncan Chapman was born on December 8, 1839, in Houston County, Georgia.

During the Civil War, Chapman enlisted in Company E of the Fifty-fifth Georgia Regiment. Chapman was captured by Union troops at the Battle of Cumberland Gap. After escaping and being recaptured by Union forces, he was imprisoned at Johnson's Island between September 1863 and February 1864, when he staged a second successful escape. Reunited with the remnants of his regiment, Chapman served as the adjutant at post at Andersonville Prison, Georgia, from June 15, 1864, to October 15, 1864.

Shortly after the end of the war, Chapman moved to Cuthbert, Georgia, where he worked at Baldwin, Redding and Co., a general merchandise firm. In 1867, Chapman married Eugenia Alice McNeil. The couple had one son, William McNeil, and two daughters, Martha Carrie and Lollie Dee. In 1871, Chapman moved to Texas with his wife and son. They lived in Nacogdoches and Houston, where he served as an officer in the local and state United Confederate Veterans camps. He died on August 7, 1934, in Dallas, Texas.

Source(s)

Williams, A. S., III (local)

Georgia--History--Civil War, 1861-1865 (lcsh)

Manuscripts for publication (aat)

United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Personal narratives, Confederate (lcsh)

United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Prisoners and Prisons (lcsh)

manuscript Item 1 Box W0083.01