Domestic and International War Correspondence

Personal diaries and daily journals were used by Methodists to record impressions and perspectives of the war. These entries evidence surprise, suspicion, shock and the mundane of the conflict. The writings also demonstrate how communication was not as instantaneous in the mid-19th century when compared to today’s social media dissemination and breaking news accounts. The writings in this case were scribed by ministers, missionaries and soldiers. They range geographically from Pennsylvania to Mississippi to India.

Diary entry of Reverend Thomas Armstrong Cass, April 13, 1861

Diary of Thomas A. Cass


“took supper at Brother H. Middlesons – discussed of the capture of Fort Sumpter…”

Thomas A. Cass was a minister with the Methodist Episcopal Church, South

Diary entry of Reverend John Lanahan, April 29, 1861

Diary of John Lanahan


“In 10 days there will be more than 30,000 soldiers located in the District of Columbia. The Government is arresting all suspicious characters here. One man was shot dead yesterday by the military who went to arrest him – he resisted and discharged a pistol at the officer of the square.”

John Lanahan was a minister with the Methodist Episcopal Church

Diary entries of Reverend Frederick Krecker, July 3, 1863 and May 18, 1864


“I visited a minister of friends in Christ. The great battel at Gettesburgh is still raging; many have fallen on both sides. Our army took thousands of prisoners. In the evening I took the cars, rode to Landsdale, took supper at Br. Neinhafers, then rode home.”

Frederick Krecker was a minister with the Evangelical Association

Diary entry of Reverend Ira Taylor Walker, May 7, 1864


“The war news is very exciting – our armies are all in motion. God give them victory and may it be the last campaign of the war. God go with our armies.”

Ira T. Walker was a minister for the Methodist Episcopal Church

“During the last 10 days there have been terrible battels fought between the Union and the Rebel forces in Virginia. G. Grant against Lee. Thus far the army of the Nation has been triumphant, and drove the Rebels further South. Over 20,000 of our brave soldiers have been either killed, wounded, or made prisoners.”

Frederick Krecker was a minister for the Evangelical Association

Domestic and International War Correspondence