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Guide to the Isaac C. Pugh papers
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Processing History
  • Biography
  • Collection Scope and Content Summary
  • Collection Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Isaac C. Pugh papers
    Date (inclusive): 1846-1872, undated
    Date (bulk): 1861-1864
    Collection Number: 266
    Creator: Pugh, Elvira E.
    Extent: 1.0 linear feet (2 document boxes)
    Repository: Rivera Library. Special Collections Department.
    Riverside, CA 92517-5900
    Abstract: The Isaac C. Pugh papers are primarily composed of letters written between members of the Pugh family, correspondence which provides insight into the lives of Union soldiers during the United States Civil War and those left behind on the home front. The bulk of the material is letters written by Isaac C. Pugh to his wife, Elvira E. Pugh, from the years 1861 to 1864. The papers also include letters by Pugh's son Isaac R. Pugh, commonly referred to as Rinaldo, and Elvira E. Pugh, the two most frequent correspondents after Isaac C. Pugh. Letters written by other family members, documents of the period, and contemporary press clippings regarding the United States Civil War are also contained within the papers.
    Languages: The collection is in English.

    Access

    The collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    Copyright has not been assigned to the University of California, Riverside Libraries, Special Collections & Archives. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Head of Special Collections & Archives. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Regents of the University of California as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the researcher.

    Preferred Citation

    [identification of item]. Isaac C. Pugh papers, Collection 266. University of California, Riverside Libraries, Special Collections & Archives, University of California, Riverside.

    Acquisition Information

    The Isaac C. Pugh papers were purchased in 1969.

    Processing History

    Processed by Sara Seltzer, 2008.

    Biography

    Isaac C. Pugh of Decatur, Illinois, was in an advantageous position to report on the United States Civil War. From his vantage point as Colonel of the 41st Regiment of the Illinois Volunteers, he could see events as they were planned and report on them as they occurred. These reports were contained in the letters he sent to his wife, Elvira, and sons back home.
    Isaac C. Pugh came to Decatur from Shelby County, Illinois in 1829. He set up the first store in Decatur and was appointed postmaster for the town. Pugh served as a Master in Chancery from 1830 to 1860, as well as a county commissioner. He married the daughter of Jerome Gorin, the chief banker and landholder in Decatur, and had 11 children. His sons B.G. (Bartly) and I.R. (Rinaldo) Pugh served under their father's command at different intervals during the United States Civil War.
    Pugh volunteered as a second lieutenant in the Black Hawk War and was promoted to company commander and captain by the war's end. Afterward, he was a first lieutenant and second in command in the Decatur Rangers, an organization responsible for combating Indian attacks. In the Mexican War, he commanded a Decatur company and participated in the bombardment of Vera Cruz. At the battle of Cerro Gordo, Pugh captured $25,000 and General Santa Anna's cork leg.
    In 1853 he was elected county treasurer, and in 1858 he resigned to practice equity law. In April of 1861, he was one of the first to volunteer for the 8th Regiment of Decatur volunteers, and was elected captain of "A" Company. After three months, Pugh re-enlisted and was elected Colonel of the 41st Regiment of the Illinois Volunteers. He participated in, and survived, some of the most definitive moments of the United States Civil War, including the battle of Fort Donelson, the siege of Vicksburg, and the battle of Shiloh (Pittsburg Landing). Colonel Pugh was promoted to the rank of Brigadier General for his meritorious conduct, and was mustered out of the service on August 20, 1864.
    Pugh returned to Decatur, Illinois in August of 1864 and ran for Illinois state representative, a position he held from 1864 to 1866. He later served as mayor of the city of Decatur. Pugh died in 1874 at the age of 69.

    Chronology

    1829: Isaac C. Pugh moved to Decatur, Illinois.
    1830: Pugh began his tenure as a Master in Chancery for Decatur, Illinois, a position he held until 1860.
    1853: Pugh was elected treasurer of Macon County, Illinois.
    1858: Pugh resigned from his position as county treasurer.
    1858: Pugh opened a private practice in equity law.
    1861: Pugh joined the 8th Regiment of Decatur volunteers to fight in the Civil War and was elected captain of "A" Company in April.
    1861: Pugh re-enlisted and was elected Colonel of the 41st Regiment of the Illinois volunteers in July.
    1863: Pugh participated in the Siege of Vicksburg in Vicksburg, Mississippi.
    1864: Pugh was promoted to the rank of Brigadier General.
    1864: Pugh returned to Decatur, Illinois after leaving the United States Military on August 20th.
    1864: Pugh was elected Illinois state representative, a position he held until 1866.
    1874: Isaac C. Pugh died at the age of 69.

    Collection Scope and Content Summary

    The Isaac C. Pugh papers are primarily composed of letters written between members of the Pugh family, correspondence which provides insight into the lives of Union soldiers during the United States Civil War and those left behind on the home front. The bulk of the material is letters written by Isaac C. Pugh to his wife, Elvira E. Pugh, from the years 1861 to 1864. The papers also include letters by Pugh's son Isaac R. Pugh, commonly referred to as Rinaldo, and Elvira E. Pugh, the two most frequent correspondents after Isaac C. Pugh. Letters written by other family members, documents of the period, and contemporary press clippings regarding the United States Civil War are also contained within the papers. Microfilm copies of the correspondence are available in positive and master negative forms.

    Collection Arrangement

    This collection is arranged into three series. Series 1 is divided into nine sub-series. The series and sub-series arrangement is as follows:
    • Series 1. Correspondence, 1846-1872, undated.
    • Sub-series 1.1. Correspondence 1846, 1846.
    • Sub-series 1.2. Correspondence 1858, 1858.
    • Sub-series 1.3. Correspondence 1861, 1861.
    • Sub-series 1.4. Correspondence 1862, 1862.
    • Sub-series 1.5. Correspondence 1863, 1863.
    • Sub-series 1.6. Correspondence 1864, 1864.
    • Sub-series 1.7.Correspondence 1865, 1865.
    • Sub-series 1.8. Correspondence 1872, 1872.
    • Sub-series 1.9. Correspondence undated, undated.
    • Series 2. Documents, 1861-1862, undated.
    • Series 3. Press clippings, undated.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.

    Subjects

    Pugh, Isaac C., d. 1874.
    Pugh, Isaac R., b. 1843.
    United States. Army. Illinois Infantry Regiment, 41st (1861-1864).
    United States.
    Civil War.
    Vicksburg (Miss.).

    Genres and Forms of Materials

    Clippings (information artifacts).
    Correspondence.
    Documents.