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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Immediate Source of Acquisition
  • Arrangement
  • Biographical / Historical
  • Preferred Citation
  • Content Description
  • Conditions Governing Use

  • Contributing Institution: Center for American War Letters Archives
    Title: William O. Gott Civil War correspondence
    Creator: Gott, William O., Private
    source: Gordon, Stephanie H.
    Identifier/Call Number: 2020.064.w.r
    Physical Description: .03 Linear Feet (one folder)
    Date (inclusive): 1849 - 1930
    Abstract: This collection contains three letters from Pvt. William O. Gott, USA to Maggie, and two letters that Maggie sent to William, during the Civil War. William and Maggie married after the war, and the collection includes a transcript of their daughter Ada Louise Gott's record of baptism. There is also a photocopy of a condolence letter from representatives from the Hackensack branch of Grand Army of the Republic that was sent to Ada Louise after her father's death in 1887, and his 1849 certificate of baptism.
    Language of Material: English .
    Container: Civil War 6
    Container: 20
    Container: 1

    Conditions Governing Access

    This collection is open for research.

    Immediate Source of Acquisition

    Gift of Stephanie H. Gordon


    This collection is organized chronologically and by type of material.

    Biographical / Historical

    Private William Oscar Gott, United States Army (1840 - 1887) was born in Westchester County, NY to parents Isaac D. and Eliza A. Gott. The family was living in Hackensack, NJ by 1860. Pvt. Gott, who went by his middle name, joined New Jersey 22nd Infantry, which was comprised of volunteers from Bergen County and mustered in Trenton on 22 September, 1862 for a nine-month term of service. Gott's regiment endured difficult marches in Virginia, but saw little action on the battlefield. No officers or enlisted men in the 22nd were killed, but one officer and thirty enlisted men died from disease or accidents. Pvt. Gott was hospitalized for at least one month before mustering out in June of 1863. He married Margaret ("Maggie") sometime thereafter, and found work as a bookkeeper. The couple had two children: Ada Louise born in 1865 and William ("Willie") in 1868. The family lived in Westchester County, NY in 1870. It appears that Maggie died sometime between 1870 and 1880, and young Willie might have died too. The 1880 U.S. census shows only teenage Ada living with her paternal grandparents in Lodi, NJ. Oscar Gott's 1887 death certificate indicates that he was a widow. He was buried at Maple Grove Park Cemetery in Hacksensack, NJ.

    Preferred Citation

    [Item title / description; Box "n" / Folder "n"], William O. Gott Civil War correspondence (2020.064.w.r), Center for American War Letters Archives, Chapman University, CA.
    For the benefit of current and future researchers, please cite any additional information about sources consulted in this collection, including permanent URLs, item or folder descriptions, and box/folder locations.

    Content Description

    This collection contains three letters from Pvt. William O. Gott, USA to Maggie, and two letters that Maggie sent to William, during the Civil War. Also included are baptismal certificates and a photocopy of a letter.
    There are three letters that Pvt. William Oscar Gott of the New Jersey 22nd Infantry sent to "friend Maggie" dated November 1862, February 1863, and April 1863. The earliest letter was sent from "camp on the Upper Potomac." The other two letters were sent from "camp near Bell Plains." Gott complains in February about marching through deep mud, sleeping on the ground, and bitterly cold weather. He writes in April that he has been sick and in the hospital for a month. He also asks, "What do you think of the conscription act[?]"
    There are two letters that Maggie sent to William. One dated 14 October 1863 requests that William pick her up that evening to attend a surprise party together. The other letter, addressed to "Dear Husband," was sent on 7 July 1868 from Woodridge, NJ, where Maggie went to receive medical attention. In this letter, Maggie informs William about the status of her health and the well-being of their two young children, who were with her. She writes, "I suppose Willie will be spoiled if he stays here much longer for he begins to show it now he must be tended all the time and we have to take him or he will scream at the top of his voice. and just as soon as he is takn he will laugh and play right away."
    This collection also includes two baptismal certificates: William Oscar Gott's 1849 certificate from St. Ann's Church in Morrisania and a 1930 official transcription of Ada Louise Gott's 1866 certificate from St. Mary's Church in Mott Haven. Morrisania and Mott Haven were originally part of Westchester County, NY.
    Lastly, there is a photocopy of an undated condolence letter from representatives of the Hackensack branch of Grand Army of the Republic, a fraternal organization, sent to "Miss Gott--Daughter of Wm. O. Gott" about her father's death. The letter extends "heartfelt sympathy" to "the orphan and relatives" on the part of Major General James B. McPherson. It is signed by John G. Fream and S. Van Weterring.

    Conditions Governing Use

    There are no restrictions on the use of this material except where previously copyrighted material is concerned. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain all permissions.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Correspondence -- American Civil War
    Gordon, Stephanie H.