Capt. Cyrus O. Palmer, 12th USCHA

[Photo credit: Officers 4th U.S. Colored Infantry, Fort Slocum, April 1865, Library of Congress.]

The Jeffersonian Democrat (Chardon, Ohio)
March 3, 1865

Our Military Correspondence.
FROM THE U.S.C.H.A.
Co. D, 12th U.S.C.H.A.,
BOWLING GREEN, Ky.,
Feb. 22d, 1865.

EDITOR DEMOCRAT: – Although a stranger to you, I made my home the most of my life, before this war, in Old Geauga, and have often read your paper; and, thinking that perhaps the good people of Old Geauga might like to hear from Kentucky, I will devote a few leisure moments to writing you.

Kentucky, as you well know, was one of the States that, like England, were neutral, and, like England’s, her neutrality was only on one side. In the beginning of this Rebellion, the State of Kentucky furnished for the so called Southern Confederacy several thousand men, and, at the same time, proposed to refuse the U.S. forces the privilege of crossing the State for the purpose of defending the honor of our flag and county. But, at this time, her people are pleading how loyal they have been, and begging for our troops to drive their Rebel pests out of the State. The majority here are the rankest kind of Rebels, but are such cowards that they dare not take up arms, and will stay at home and abuse the powers that be, at the same time claiming protection of our Government.

The guerrillas have made sad havoc in some parts of this State, but your humble servant and some few true men have made sad havoc with them. I have been hunting them to most of the winter. We have made some parts of the State too hot to hold them, as we make it a rule to take no prisoners, and such a rule does not set well with them. Kentucky soldiers (Union) speak highly of Ohio. There were some in the chase after Morgan, on his raid through Ohio. They say they were treated like kings. But here a soldier is not thought any more of than a negro, unless he is lucky enough to wear a pair of shoulder straps.

We have had a joyous time here to-day, on the receipt of the glorious news of the capture of Fort Sumter, and the hot bed of treason, Charleston. We fired a salute of 100 guns. If any news from this part of the army is of any interest to you or your readers, I will willingly furnish it. The weather here is very pleasant, quite as warm as you have in May. The farmers are ploughing for their spring crops.

Respectfully yours,
CAPT C. O. PALMER,
Com’d’g Co. D, 12th U.S.C.H.A.


The Jeffersonian Democrat (Chardon, Ohio)
March 31, 1865

Our Military Correspondence.
BOWLING GREEN, KY., March 23d, 1865.

DEAR DEMOCRAT: – Once more I will write you a few lines from the old hills of Bowling Green. War news is very scarce now, as the stern example that has been set for those who will be murderers and robbers, has at last made them think of giving up their poor calling. Many of them have left the State, some for the Rebel army, other for parts unknown.

I have just returned from a short visit to my friends in Geauga County. I found your climate somewhat colder than we have here. I left this town on the 2d inst., and, at that time, we had no need of coats, as the weather was quite warm; but, when I arrived in Painesville, Ohio, I found I needed about all the clothes I could get on to keep warm. But home never needs sunshine and warm weather to make me happy. All it needs is a good welcome, and that is what every soldier gets who visits the northern part of the old Buckeye State. – My heart beat with happy emotions when I saw the snow-capped hills of Old Geauga. None can tell the happiness that a soldier feels when he sees old and well-known faces, after he has been in the field for some time, and his life exposed at all times. He soon forgets all dangers he has passed through, when he feels the influence of kind friends; and I will say here that kindness will kill an old soldier sooner than harshness, for hard treatment he is used to, but kindness he knows but little of in the army.

But perhaps a slight description of this place would not come amiss. It is in a fertile valley, with high hills on each side. On the south-west side, the Barren River coils slowly along. In days of peace, this was one of the prettiest places in the State, but now, like all towns here, it looks cold and barren. But some beauty still remains. – The streets are well paved, and all of the dooryards are well-shaded. The trees are now leaved out, and fruit trees are in bloom. I will send you some of the blossoms. Perhaps they will be a sight to some who have never seen the sunny South.

Respectfully yours,
CAPT. C. O P.,
12th U.S.C.H.A.

 

 

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Black soldiers in the United States Colored Troops