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 CIVIL WAR ERA LETTERS OF THE JOHN MILTON
CANNON AND ELLENDER MALINDA RICH CANNON FAMILY

John Milton Cannon married Ellender Malinda Rich in 1846 in Georgia. They had four daughters and four sons ranging in age from 2 1/2 months to 15 years when John Milton enlisted as a Private in the 8th Confederate Battalion, Company B in the Georgia Volunteer Infantry, Calhoun, Georgia. Between December 12, 1862, and May 1, 1864, he wrote 28 letters back home to his wife and children. Malinda also wrote 5 letters to her husband. There are also 7 letters written by other family members to John Milton and Malinda's family; these were written by a brother(J. W. Cannon) and by nephews (James D. Rich and W. R. Rich). The original letters were preserved by Malinda Cannon as she and her children moved to Texas. Malinda died in Jones County, Texas, in 1891. After that time, the letters were preserved by various family members, including Cleo Post Cannon Hughes, John and Malinda's granddaughter who lived in Stamford, Texas. Cleo and a much younger cousin, Sue Lewis, collaborated on a book listing all the descendants of John and Malinda in about 1970. Included in the book were copies of 3 of John's letters home, as well as very brief excerpts from most of his other letters. During this collaboration, copies of 40 letters were made for Sue Lewis, who now lives in Lubbock, Texas. She has safeguarded these copies for 35 years, and now has graciously loaned these to me so that they may be scanned and electronically preserved for study. In addition to the 40-plus letters which are on this site, three of the letters excerpted by Cleo Hughes are missing for now. These are letters written by John M. Cannon on December 16 and December 20, 1862, from Secessionville, South Carolina, and on April 24, 1863, from Camp Lerner, South Carolina. Scanned images of Cleo Cannon Hughes' "Excerpts from letters..." are also on the site. The details of the scanned images as viewed on a computer screen are actually easier to discern than on the paper images. The images are JPEG's which are mostly in gray scale. The dots per inch and compression were varied some from image to image because of the varying clarity of the originals. The native size of the image is usually larger than the computer screen can display. Your image viewer may shrink the image to fit on the screen. If you wish to see all of the detail of the image, make sure to view it at its native (actual) size.

The file name of each image indicates the date of the letter. Letters sent by John Milton Cannon are indicated by date and page only, with no personal name as part of the file name: Mar15,1863-p2 indicates a letter sent by John on March 15, 1863, page 2. Some letters are slightly too long for my scanner, so a second image is shown to include the end of the page which was missed. This second image is designated by a ' at the end: Mar17,1863-p2' indicates the second image of page 2 of the March 17, 1863, letter from John. Letters from Malinda Cannon to John Milton Cannon are indicated by the name Malinda after the date: Oct30,1863-Malinda-p3 indicates a letter sent by Malinda on October 30, 1863 page 3. Letters sent by other family members are similarly indicated by the name of the sender after the date: Jul7,1862-JD&WRRich-p4 indicates a letter sent by J. D. Rich and W. R. Rich on July 7, 1862, page 4.

The transcriptions and translations of the letters are a joint project of Lynn Cannon Pollak and Joe R. Cannon.  Lynn is a great-great-granddaughter of Bird Cannon, a brother of John Milton Cannon.  Lynn also prepared the footnotes and provided the information for the brief biography of William A. "Tip" Powell.  Lynn's contributions to this project have been invaluable.


A listing of the letters is located below: Letters from John Milton Cannon to Malinda Cannon identified by date and location:

1. December 12, 1862 Charleston, S.C.
2. January 5, 1863 Secessionville, S.C.
3. January 10, 1863 Secessionville, S.C.
4. January 18, 1863 Secessionville, James Island, S.C.
5. January 26, 1863 Secessionville, James Island, S.C.
6. February 9, 1863 Secessionville, James Island, S.C.
7. Unknown month 18, 1863 Secessionville, James Island, S.C.(According to Cleo Hughes and Sue Lewis' book, the letter was written February 18, 1863)
8. March 1, 1863 Secessionville, S.C.
9. March 15, 1863
10. March 17, 1863 Secessionville, S.C.
11. April 7, 1863 Secessionville, James Island, S.C.
12. April 12, 1863 Secessionville, James Island, S.C.
13. Unknown month 15, 1863 Secessionville, James Island, S.C.
14. April 20, 1863 Secessionville, James Island, S.C.
15. May 1, 1863 Secessionville, S.C.
16. May 24, 1863 Camp near Canton, Mississippi
17. June 2, 1863
18. June 21, 1863 Camp near Vernon, Mississippi
19. June 26, 1863 Camp near Vernon, Mississippi
20. July 28, 1863 Camp near Morton, Mississippi
21. August 11-12, 1863 Camp near Morton, Mississippi
22. August 17, 1863 Camp near Morton, Mississippi
23. September 3, 1863 Camp near Tyners Station, Tenn.
24. October 7, 1863 Camp near Chattanooga, Tenn.
25. November 2, 1863 Camp near Chattanooga, Tenn.
26. January 10, 1864 Camp near Dolton (Dalton?), GA
27. April 17, 1864 Camp near Dolton (Dalton?), GA
28. April 27, 1864 Camp near Dolton (Dalton?), GA
29. May 1, 1864 Camp near Dolton (Dalton?), GA
30. Unknown Date

Letters from Malinda Cannon to John Milton Cannon arranged by date:

1. August 10, 1863
2. August 17, 1863
3. October 16, 1863
4. October 30, 1863
5. November 13, 1863

Other letters addressed to John Milton Cannon, and extended family:

1. January 31, 1862 Savannah, GA James D. Rich to ("Dear uncle") J.M. Cannon also, note to William Powell

2. April 26, 1862 Camp Smith, Savannah, GA J.W. Cannon ("Wiley") to "Dear Brother and Sister"

3. June 8, 1862 Camp Smith near Savannah, GA W.R. Rich to Mr. J.M. Cannon ("Deare uncle")

4. July 7, 1862 Camp Beaulieu, GA J.D. Rich to ("Deare Cosin") Huldah Cannon & W.R. Rich to ("Deare Cosin") Huldah Cannon

5. July 27, 1862 Camp Beaulieu, Savannah, Chatham Co GA J.W. Cannon (Wiley) to ("Dear brother and sister") J.M. Cannon,
Melinda Cannon and family

6. October 26, 1862 Camp Lamar, S.C. W.R. Rich to ("Deare uncle") J.M. Cannon

7. March 15, 1863 Camp Lamar, S.C. W.R. Rich to ("Brother") J.D. Rich W.R. Rich to ("Cosin") W.A. Powell ("Tip")


Prepared by Joe Ronald Cannon (Great Grandson of John Milton Cannon and Ellender Malinda Rich Cannon)

Joe Ronald Cannon
3304 State Highway 351
Abilene, TX 79601
joe@cannoncivilwarletters.com
 

 

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