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Poland Historical Society uncovers Civil War letter

February 27, 2019
Dave Smith - Poland Historical Society secretary , The Town Crier

While members of the Poland Historical Society were working on cataloguing items found in the archives at their museum in the Little Red Schoolhouse they came across a great discovery. Over 40 original letters written by and to Isaac Raub and John Nesbitt of Poland while they were serving in the Civil War were discovered. The letters were found in their original small envelopes. Some were written on stationary and mailed in envelopes which had images of earlier Civil War battles or national points of interest. Both Raub and Nesbitt served in Company H of the 105th Ohio Volunteer Infantry which was mustered in at Cleveland in August 1862. The regiment was composed of many local men. It served in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Georgia and was mustered out in Washington D.C. in June 1865.

The letters speak to the difficulties experienced by both the soldiers miles from home and the family left behind in Poland without their spouses, sons, or brothers. Raub died in a Chattanooga hospital on Christmas Day 1863 leaving his young wife and baby. Nesbitt returned to Poland after the war and served as Postmaster of Poland. Among other local Poland men mentioned in the letters are Isaac's brothers, Samuel and John Raub, John Nesbitt's brother, James, Joseph Rummel, Dr. Charles Fowler, George and Peter Spitler, Ira Mansfield, and the Company Captain Robert Wilson who was killed at Perryville, Kentucky.

The letters have been scanned and placed in acid-free plastic sheets for proper preservation. A 13-page summary of the correspondence was written and is available at the Schoolhouse.

Article Photos

Envelope addressed to Isaac Raub while in the hospital near Lexington, Kentucky in 1862 from his wife, Mary Jane Nesbitt Raub of Poland.

The cataloguing effort has taken place over the last several months. Hundreds of artifacts, photos, documents and other items have been examined and sorted into categories. The items have been entered into a computer program which is searchable by keywords. Examples of archive items are Poland School yearbooks, Poland Firemen Directories, Poland families' information, early Poland histories, William McKinley memorabilia, framed paintings and sketches, Baird Mitchell medals, early Poland deeds, newspaper articles, Poland community celebrations, and information on Poland churches, schools, government, and cemeteries. Visitors to the museum will now find it much easier to locate pertinent information because of this endeavor.



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