James W. McKee Collection: Two Confederate Army Soldier Diaries, 1861-1865


James W. McKee Collection: Two Confederate Army Soldier Diaries, 1861-1865


The James W. McKee Collection: Two Confederate Army Soldier Diaries, held by the Archives of Appalachia [link to www.etsu.edu/archives] at East Tennessee State University, consists of photocopies of typescripts of the diaries of two Confederate soldiers, Finley Patterson Curtis and Rufus A. Spainhour. Both men served in the Confederate Army with the First and Second North Carolina Regiments in the Virginia theater. Curtis' commanders were General Stephen Dodson Ramseur and Brigadier General (?) Warren. Spainhour's commanders included Generals Jubal A. Early, James B. Gordon, Robert E. Lee, G.H. Stewart and (?) Thurston and Brigadier Generals Theophilus Hunter Holmes and Stephen Dodson Ramseur. Spainhour's diary is the more colorful; he covers several notable events (e.g., Gettysburg, the siege of Washington, and Appomattox) and includes sober reflections on the realities of war.

Curtis' diary is a detailed account of his service from 1861-1864 and is divided into four books. His diary ends with an account of a furlough at home. Spainhour's diary is a condensed version of the original by Curtis' son, F.P. Curtis, Jr. A question mark (?) used in the typescript indicates doubt concerning whether the word was copied correctly from the handwritten diary.

The current digital collection contains PDF file surrogates created in 2022 of the complete content of the collection.


McKee, James W. (Person)


James W. McKee Collection: Two Confederate Army Soldier Diaries, Archives of Appalachia, East Tennessee State University




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ETSU Archives of Appalachia: AppMs-0148

Collection Items

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