Sergt. Hiram Hilts

Submitted by Dianne Thomas

This letter is from the Civil War Pension file of  Sgt. Hiram G. HILTS, son of James & Margaret, who was of Manlius, NY.   This is a letter to the parents of Hiram, informing them of his death, and signed by James Goodfellow.

Hiram was killed and is buried at Gettysburg (a pic is also attached).  He was with the NY Vol.  122nd, Co. C.  He was unwed and was the only fiscal support of his parents from the monies he earned in the military.



Re: Pvt. HIRAM G. HILTS  1863
122nd , Company C.  NY Vol. Inf.
Buried at Gettysburg National Cemetery  (status was as a Sgt)

A copy of this letter was found in the Pension Files of Hiram HILTS, son of James & Margaret HILTS of the Dewitt, NY area.   His parents and family moved westward after his death.


July 4, 1863
Camp on the Battlefield near Gettysburg


Dear Friends,

I take this opportunity to write you a few lines to let you know how we get along down here.  We came here on the 2nd day of this month and yesterday we were led into battle.  We are very well, what are alive.  We had two killed in our company and three wounded and it is my painful duty to inform you that Hiram was among the former.  We had to pass over an exposed place on our way to the Breastworks.  We had not been in the works but a short time before he was killed.  He was shot in the head.  But I did not know it until we were coming away.  He was carried from the field as soon as I fount it out.  He must have died immediately.  We have burried him as decently as circumstances would admit.  The whole Company would have volunteered to have him embalmed and have him sent home but it was as much as could be done to carry the dead and wounded from the field.  This is a sad 4th of July for us in one sense and glorious in another.  Sad for the loss of so many dear comrads, glorious for the decisive victories we have gained on the enemy at this place.  I have all of his things, except his Diary.  I will send you a bill of money that he had & a Silver half dollar.  And I will send the rest of them at the first opportunity.  The half dollar, Tom Gregory gave him as he was coming away from Syracuse.  We have lost seven killed  & thirty three wounded in our Regiment, among the killed is James Wickham.  The other one killed in our company is Patrick Fanning of Oran.   The wounded are Hiram Agan of Fayetteville, James Miles of High Bridge & Charles Williams of Oran.  It is thought that this will be the last decisive battle fir the Rebels.  Before we went into battle, Hiram appeared to feel happy and that if it was his fate to fall it would be in a good cause.  You must not take this too hard, for some must die and it is the ones that are courageous and the Boldest in the fight.  Give my respects to all and answer this as soon as you can.

Yours & in haste
JAMES GOODFELLOW


hiram hilts


Submitted 2 March 2002