Skip to main content

James Craft correspondence

Call Number: RH MS P928


Correspondence from Union soldier James Craft to his wife, Nancy Craft, during the Civil War. The letters express his longing for home, sickness in the camp, and efforts to send money to help Nancy with managing the house.


  • 1862 - 1880


Conditions Governing Access

No restrictions on access.

Conditions Governing Use

Spencer Library staff may determine use restrictions dependent on the physical condition of manuscript materials.

Biography of James Craft

James Craft was born to Anderson and Catherine Craft in Indiana. He eventually married and moved with his family to Long Creek Township in Decatur County, Iowa.

Craft enlisted with the army at the age of 32 on August 15, 1862. He died of disease April 22, 1863 near Saint Louis, Missouri, at Benton Barracks.

History of 34th Regiment, Iowa Infantry

James Craft was a private in Company I of the Iowa 34th Infantry Regiment. The Regiment was organized at Burlington, Iowa, October 15, 1862. The regiment moved to Arkansas on November 22, where they were attached to the District of Eastern Arkansas. The regiment participated in General Sherman's Yazoo Expedition December 22, 1862 to January 2, 1863. In mid-January 1863, the group captured Fort Hindman in the Battle of Arkansas Post. After the battle the regiment was instructed to secure the prisoners, remaining with them as they moved from Chicago, Illinois to St. Louis, Missouri eventually to City Point, Virginia.


.25 Linear Feet (1 document case)

Language of Materials


Scope and Contents

Letters sent from James Craft to his wife, Nancy, about life in camp, homesickness, disease, and payments sent home to help support the farm. Later letters after Craft's death in 1863 are authored by some of his relatives, including Jaimee Craft, Mars Richson, and Dock Cludsin. Also included in the collection are Craft's Bible and some photographs.

Physical Location

RH MS P928

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchase, Charles Apfelbaum, 2002.

Related Materials

Consult library staff regarding the availability of other Civil War era collections, photographs, biographical files, and scrapbooks.

Guide to the James Craft collection
James Craft correspondence
Finding aid prepared by eml, 2014
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Finding aid written in English.
Finding aid permalink
Preferred citation
James Craft correspondence, RH MS P928, Kenneth Spencer Research Library, University of Kansas.

Repository Details

Part of the University of Kansas. Kenneth Spencer Research Library Repository

1450 Poplar Lane
Lawrence KS 66045-7616 United States