Franklin

Letters and family history, 1861-1963.

Author/Creator:
Cowan, Henry Inch.
Publication:
1861-1963.
Format/Description:
Manuscript
102 items (197 leaves).
Arrangement:
15 folders.
Subjects:
Cowan family.
Dix, John A. (John Adams), 1798-1879.
Humphreys, A. A. (Andrew Atkinson), 1810-1883.
Rush, Richard Henry, 1824-1893.
United States. Army. Pennsylvania Cavalry Regiment, 6th (1861-1865).
United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865 -- Participation, Irish.
United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865 -- Letters.
Local subjects:
Boggs, G. W.
Form/Genre:
Genealogies.
Letters.
Manuscripts -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia -- 19th century.
Biography/History:
Henry Inch Cowan was born on October 20, 1846, to Irish immigrants Henry Cowan and Catherine Benning. He enlisted to fight in the Civil War, was imprisoned in a hospital captured by Confederates, and served as a scout toward the end of the war. After formal discharge from service, Henry Inch Cowan worked as a commission merchant and volunteer firefighter. He moved to New Orleans, where he died of yellow fever on September 21, 1867.
Summary:
Contains Civil War letters from Henry Inch Cowan to his father, Henry Cowan, and mother in Philadelphia, dated December 1861 through July 1865. Describes Cowan's enlistment with Company K, the 6th Pennsylvania Cavalry Regiment. Letters detail the regiment's movements through numerous sites: Meridian Hill; Fort Monroe; Hampton, Va.; Frederick, Md.; Warrenton; Belle Plain, Va.; Camp Buford, Md.; Louisville, Ky. Contains brief accounts of engagements near Williamsburg, Hanover Court House, and Pekin Creek. Includes story of Cowan's hospitalization with typhoid fever near Cold Harbor, the loss of the hospital to Confederates, and the recapture of the hospital by Union troops. Includes Cowan's experience as a scout near war's end.
Folder 4 includes items related to Cowan's hospitalization with typhoid in 1862 from William L. Moss, Charles M. Ellis, Charles Humphreys to A. A. Humphreys, E. Dale to S. M. Felton (with reply), George M. Stroud to G. W. Boggs, and a letter to Major General John A. Dix with endorsements signed by Geo. M. Stroud, Edward Gratz, William D. Kelly, John P. Verree, and Charles J. Biddle regarding permission for Henry Cowan to visit his son. Also includes a letter written by Herbert S. Gee on behalf of Henry Inch Cowan.
Includes correspondence between Henry Cowan and F. Oertling regarding the death of Henry Inch Cowan in 1867. Includes Henry Inch Cowan's furlough and re-enlistment papers, final certificate of discharge dated August 1865, Cowan's death certificate, and receipts for burial. Contains Cowan family genealogy and a compilation of the life of Henry Inch Cowan by his nephew Henry B. Cowan. Also includes a school composition by Henry Inch Cowan prior to enlistment in the war.
Notes:
Some envelopes are patriotic covers, printed by Magee, Chestnut St., Philadelphia, and include a portrait of Lt. R. H. Rush, flags, and patriotic emblems (stamps have been cut out).
Penn Provenance:
Gift of Henry B. Cowan, Class of 1912.
Contributor:
Biddle, Charles J. (Charles John), 1819-1873.
Cowan, Henry, recipient
Cowan, Henry B., compiler.
Dale, E.
Ellis, Charles M.
Felton, S. M. (Samuel Morse), 1809-1889
Gee, Herbert S.
Gratz, Edward, d. 1869.
Kelly, William D.
Stroud, George M. (George McDowell), 1795-1875.
Verree, John P. (John Paul), 1817-1889.
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