Our nation’s Civil War had been raging for just six months when William R. Jackson joined the Third Ohio Volunteer Cavalry as quartermaster. His wife, Julia, joined the ranks of women on both sides of the conflict who prayed fervently that they would not see their loved ones’ names on the growing lists of casualties. As with most soldiers and their families, handwritten letters were to be their main contact during those four long years of war. As the Third moved further south into “Dixie,” William and Julia’s letters increased in frequency. It was these carefully folded pieces of paper, each still in its original envelope, that were found decades later tucked away in a closet. Realizing her ancestors’ letters were not just historically significant but also a wonderful human interest story, the editor resolved to transcribe and share them with others.
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