Alva Sinks letter
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Alva Sinks letter

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Georgia Historical Society
Creator: Sinks, Alva, 1847-1881.
Title: Alva Sinks letter
Dates: 1864
Extent: 0.05 cubic feet (1 folder)
Identification: MS 0732

Biographical/Historical Note

Alva Sinks (1847-1881) was born in Ohio. During the Civil War, he served as a Union soldier in Company B of the 71st Ohio Infantry. He married Ann Macy on January 9, 1867. Sinks died on January 3, 1881.

Scope and Content Note

This collection consists of a letter from Alva Sinks to his father, George Sinks, written from a camp near Atlanta, Georgia, in 1864. In the letter, Sinks writes of fighting from Dalton to Jonesboro, Georgia, of the destruction of the countryside, and of the defenses of Atlanta and impending battle. The letter gives a first-hand account of the Union Army in the Atlanta area. Sinks praises the movements of William T. Sherman's troops and tells of Sherman's orders for all civilians to be removed from Atlanta and the city's transformation into a military encampment. He also mentions General Hood and the Confederate's fortifications. He describes magnificent houses riddles with bullets and how the countryside has been devastated, with no food or supplies left for the Confederate troops and civilians. Sinks also mentions his dislike for the "copperheads," Union men who were against the Civil War and wanted "peace at any cost." The collection also includes an envelope containing a woodcut of Gen. Winfield Scott is enclosed with the letter, as well as another envelope postmarked at Chattanooga.

Index Terms

Atlanta (Ga.)
Georgia--History--Civil War, 1861-1865.
Hood, John Bell, 1831-1879.
Letters (correspondence)
Sherman's March to the Sea.
Sherman, William T., (William Tecumseh), 1820-1891.
Sinks, Alva, 1847-1881.
United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Personal narratives.
United States. Army. Ohio Infantry Regiment, 71st (1861-1864). Company B.

Administrative Information

Custodial history

Material was acquired from a family member of the creator.

Preferred citation

[Identification of item], Alva Sinks letter, MS 732, Georgia Historical Society, Savannah, Georgia.

Acquisition information

Gift of the estate of Mabel C. Sinks, 1953.


Access restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Publication rights

Copyright has not been assigned to the Georgia Historical Society. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Division of Library and Archives. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Georgia Historical Society 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.

Container List

Item 1: Alva Sinks to his father, George Sinks. Camp near Atlanta, 1864 September 20 ( 4.0 p. ). View images: 1 | 2.
Enclosing envelope with woodcut of Gen. Winfield Scott is with letter; also another envelope postmarked at Chattanooga.
Online Inventory Contains Digitized Items