Welcome to our Chatfield Story Website
Edward's Civil War letters comprise one of our nation's best examples of a common soldier's first-hand accounts of the Civil War:
hefty, extensive, detailed, well-written.
Twenty-year old private Edward L. Chatfield...
Ed Chatfield's story became our
5-year project (2005-2009)
Following the war, Thomas O'Dea, (Private Co. E 6th Regiment Main Infantry) sketched / lithographed
a bird's eye view of Andersonville,
revealing the grim horrors there in June of 1864. Edward had his own personal copy.
We had our "to do" list...
* Transcribe and sequence letters and diaries
* Research historical facts; travel
to each location
* Write compelling narrative
* Prepare footnotes, endnotes
* Proofread & correct ad infinitum
* Publish and distribute high-quality book and digital
> Barnes & Noble
An important collection...
Edward served 1862-1864
That old shoe box contained close to 110 stirring letters (some, post-war). Edward's 460 dramatic, on-the-scene
diary-entries supplemented his letters, producing vivid accounts of the Western Theater including:
* Events from the Central Mississippi Campaign
* The Battle of Chickasaw Bayou
* The Battle of Deer Creek and Black Bayou
* The Battle of Vicksburg
* Marches to occupy Nathan Bedford
Of great help to us in "getting the big picture" was the stirring 1913 post-war book
Edward's First Sergeant (and friend), Orderly John J. Kellogg,
brilliantly capturing the mood, circumstances,
and events through the fall of Vicksburg.
It was from Beach and Dennison that we gathered the clues to deduce when and how Chatfield managed to escape
"That old shoe box had been bound by a loop of red yarn, its sides bulging from the treasure within. We were about
to witness Civil War history through the eyes of a common soldier. ~Terry and Peg McCarty 1964
(Book or Digital)
The Chatfield Story: great reviews