top of page

4 page letter in ink from Samuel B Clayton of the 114th Pa Vols known as Collis's Zouaves after their Colonel.  Great content on the Battle of Fredericksburg!


Simon B. Clayton

Residence was not listed; 23 years old.

Enlisted on 8/7/1862 at Philadelphia, PA as a Private.

On 8/7/1862 he mustered into "I" Co. PA 114th Infantry 
He died of disease on 4/7/1863 at Potomac Creek, VA
Promotions:  * Corpl 


Camp Pitcher
Dec. 19, 1862

Dear Brother,

I take my pen in hand to write you a few lines to let you know that I am well and I sincerely hope these few lines may find you and your family the same.  We have fell back on this side of the river but I don’t know what is causing for we held the Rebs at bay just as we please.  General Burnside returned his greatest thank to General Robinson for saving Randolfs Battery and also to Colonel Collis for if it had not been for our Regt. the battery would have been in the hand of the Rebs. I tell you what, it is when we went in they threw grape shell and the bullets as fast as they could but it was of no use for we went like that many fool dogs.  We laid right in front all of Saturday afternoon and allday Sunday until Monday morning about day light when we was relieved and on Saturday as we went in just before we got up to the battery.  We was ordered to throw off our knapsacks of which we done and while we was fighting, the Rebs, the 141 Regt. was going through our knapsacks.  They took my shirt, drawers and towel and woolen blankets and gum one to but I was lucky enough to get my gum blanket back and about 2 o’clock on Saturday morning the Colonel come around and told about 10 off us out of a company to go back and see if we could get our knapsack but when we got down there, the knapsacks was minus but the staff of general Birney was laying there with as many as 7 or 8 blankets on them.  And they would not leave us have any of them and the General came around and I said to him it is to pledged bad for us to have to lay up there in the mud about 4 inches deep without any blankets and here these fellow lays with about 6 or 8 blankets on them.  And he said to me what are you hunting and I said I am hunting my blanket and he told me to take one and I clinched hold one of the blankets which was one worn of the staff oilers and gave it a jerk and fetched it off him.  He pretended to cus a little but I did not pay much attention to him.  We lose everything that we had.  I lost my portfolio which had all my writing appear and postage stamps in.  No more at present.  

I still remain your affectionate brother,

S.B. Clayton 
To E. Clayton


Letter from a Collis Zouave 114th PA Vols Fredericksburg

    bottom of page