Ashley Carpenter, Warrenville’s First Civil War Casualty

The following excerpts taken from Ashley’s mother, Sarah Warren Carpenter’s notes written in 1895 will fill in the gap between his last entry and his death on November 30, 1862, in Scottsville, Kentucky.

“In ’62 our oldest son Ashley and a boy that had lived in our family 12 years, Robert Corlet, 4 years older than our son, enlisted.  We hoped then the war would soon be over –the regiment was first in Chicago, then at Dixon and then back to Chicago –before leaving Dixon our son was sick so he obtained a furlough and came home for a few days, then they were sent to Kentucky –he had only been from home 2 months –when Ashley was taken sick from hard marching and exposure.  We received a letter from the physician and surgeon of the 105th, Dr. Potter with whom we were well acquainted, saying Ashley is sick –we obliged to push on south, I leave him in the hands of a good physician –and whatever the result, Ashley is all right –he has the confidence and respect of the whole regiment, and is every inch a hero –We soon received a dispatch sent to his brother Philo Carpenter –whose son brought it to us at 11 oclock at night –and at 2 o’clock that morning he was on his way to Chicago hoping to take the morning train south –but could not get his passes and his money changed in time, so had to wait till the evening train –when he arrived at Bowling Green he hurried on to Scottsville as fast as possible, he found Ashley just alive, but past speaking –though they thought he knew he had come had been looking very anxiously for him.  They started as quickly as possible expecting to travel all night, hoping to meet the morning train at Bowling Green but there was a severe thunder storm in the night and they had to stop at the house of a rebel –they arrived in time but it was because the train was delayed 2 hours–the young friend that took care of Ashley was left at Bowling Green sick he only lived 2 weeks–On arriving at Chicago was met by friends, took him to the undertakers and the next forenoon about 40 of our relatives went to see the remains–my husband had three sisters and a brother and I had three sisters living there at that time.  (my husband came home that night and the next afternoon two of my sisters came out with the remains, funeral Friday.  Ashley was the first one of our regiment to be brought home and in a very short time 14 soldiers were laid in our little cemetery at Warrenville.  There was a great many palliating circumstances connected with our son’s sickness and death.  Two of the Captains took great pains to find him a nice place; they got him in to a good union family, merchant in the place, members of the Baptist Church, and their names were Carpenter.  They had 5 sick soldiers at the time they gave him the parlor and took excellent care of him–my husband became very much attached to them–and before the war closed they came up and made us a visit, and we visited them–we corresponded with them as long as they lived, and do yet with the family.  Robert went all through the war and came to us with consumption, lived 5 months.”

Civil War Diaries, September 4, 1862

Ashley Carpenter Diary Entry:

Sept. 4  Father, mother, and Sarah Jane were in Dixon at three o’clock in the morning.  Fathers voice woke me with joy at four o clock in the barracks.  Recd $17.00 first months pay in advace.

Charley Cooper called here on his way Home from Iowa—glad to see his.

Father, Mother & Jane returned at eleven o’clock Col J.M.Warren was with them.  I awaited in the depot with Wray until they departed.

The cars were filled to overflowing, even freight cars were fraught with furloughed soldiers.”

Hiram Leonard Diary Entry:

4th Thursday  fine weather for the season.  I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 by Hoyts & got home at 9, & went to bed about 10 nearly sick, soldiers at camp Dixon all the week.”

Civil War Diaries, September 3, 1862

Ashley Carpenter Diary Entry:

“Sept. 3  Formed for drill in the morning.

At ten oclock an order came for us to leave Camp for Louisville K.Y.

The highest pitch of excitement prevailed among the boys in view of not seeing Home.  Signed ten muster rolls which consumed the afternoon & evening.”

Hiram Leonard Diary Entry:

3rd Wednesday  rather fine weather for the season.  I did my choars was at the office all day & a choaring round home, came home by Hoyts about 8 & got home at 9 & went to bed about 10 nearly sick.”

Civil War Diaries, September 2, 1862

Ashley Carpenter Diary Entry:

“Sept. 2  Went down into town & received the mail for Capts. [Seth F.] Daniels, [Amos C.] Graves & [Capt. Theodore S.] Rogers [of Naperville].

At ten went down to Camp Fuller & were mustered into the service as a regiment, & the field officers were appointed.  Gen. Fuller made an appropriate speech that was received with applause.

At ten oclock in the evening I was detailed as sergeant of the guards.  Passed a sleepless night.”

Hiram Leonard Diary Entry:

2nd Tuesday  rather fine weather for the season.  I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 by Hoyts got home about 9 & went to bed about 10 nearly sick. [in margin] 105. Regiment mustered in to the Servis at Camp Dixon.”

Civil War Diaries, September 1, 1862

Ashley Carpenter Diary Entry:

“Sept. 1  Nothing of interest occurred in the morning.  In the afternoon we drilled 4 hours & then went one mile to Camp Fuller to be mustered but it being to late we returned to go again in the morning.”

Hiram Leonard Diary Entry:

September 1st Monday  rather a fine day for the season.  I did my choars was at the office all day & in evening came home about 8 by Hoyts came home at 9 & went to bed about 10 nearly sick.”

Civil War Diaries, August 31, 1862

Ashley Carpenter Diary Entry:

“Aug. 31  The morning dawned heralded by a shower.  Attended divine service in the morning at Baptist Church and at the Methodist in the evening & spent the night in a ware house on a pile of corn.”

Hiram Leonard Diary Entry:

31st Sunday  A cloudy damp day with several showers during the day & some thunder.  I did my choars went to the office after breckfust came back about 9 & choared round the house wrote some etc called at Hoyts & Wrays in evening came home about 9 & went to bed about sick, Wrays wife & sister came over about noon & picked up things a little & put them away so as to clean house to moove in when Wray comes back.”

Civil War Diaries, August 30, 1862

Ashley Carpenter Diary Entry:

Aug. 30  Boarded at Hotel & slept in cars.  Drilled 4 hours & quartered in the I.C.R.R. sleeping on a pile of corn.”

Hiram Leonard Diary Entry:

30th Saturday  rather a fine hot day but some cloudy.  I did my choars & started for Batavia about 9 with Wrays horse & Wellmans buggy got there between 10 & 11, came back & took dinner at Carpenters called at Yorks about & left about 3 & got home about 4 choared round the house & went to office about 5, eat supper about 6 did my choars was at the office in evening came home by Hoyts about 8, got home about 9 & soon went to bed nearly sick.”

Civil War Diaries, August 29, 1862

Ashley Carpenter Diary Entry:

“Aug. 29  Went to Camp at Dixon”

Hiram Leonard Diary Entry:

29th Friday  rather a fine hot day but cloudy some.  I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 by Hoyts & got home about 9 & soon went to bed tiard & sick & lonesome the soldiers all left for camp at Dixon & Wray with them it was a solem lonesom time, they say it was the most trying seen that has ever been seen in this country when they were all at Wheaton & when they left, said by some, that there were more tears shed than on any occasion in the same length of time.  Left Wheaton at 11 oclock.”

Hiram E. Leonard Diary, May 15, 1861

15th Wednesday fine cool weather & getting quite dry on top of the ground. I did my choars was at the office all day & in the evening came home about 9 & went to bed nearly sick. F Pollard & wife went to Dixon to see drilling.”

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Hiram E. Leonard Diary, May 7, 1861

7th Tuesday rather fine cool weather for the season I did my choars was at the store all day & in the evening came home about 9 & went to bed tiard & nearly sick with a cold. Naperville company went to Aurora to go to Dixon to drill.”