Civil War Letters Available Through Electronic Library

The Electronic Library is the new home for a collection of 32 Civil War letters loaned by area physician Dr. Douglas Guthrie for the purpose of digitization, transcription and placement in an online database.

Written by Major John Coleman of the Third Texas Cavalry and his fiancée, Jennie Adkins, the letters are filled with romantic intrigue, eyewitness accounts of key battles, the minutiae of military life and even some humor. Their insights into the morale of a Confederate officer provide researchers with a visceral, first-hand view into the turbulent years of a devastating Civil War.

The letters were scanned at a high resolution and placed online in the Electronic Library’s Digital Collection. They were also transcribed and organized into a chronological "narrative" document for easier reading. The collection features full-text searching, pan and zoom capability and an interactive map displaying letter-writing sites and key battle sites.

The collection is viewable online at

-Eric Ames, Electronic Library