Michigan in the Civil War

Corden, John, 1821-

John Corden, from Milton Chase papers

Fifty-five letters (1861-1865) written to his wife while he was serving in Company F, 6th Michigan Infantry, as captain in the Mississippi campaign. In 1864 he was promoted to major and then lieutenant colonel. His letters tell of the treatment accorded the regiment on the way to Baltimore and in Baltimore; life in Camp McKim; and of food, the weather, and the health of the men. There is an account of life on board the ship Constitution bound for Ship Island and descriptions of Ship Island, the entry into New Orleans, the shelling of Grand Gulf, the capture of Castle, the chief of the guerrillas, treatment of the occupying troops by the citizens of Baton Rouge, General Williams' ouster of the regiment from their quarters in favor of a Connecticut regiment, the battle of Baton Rouge, a march through a swamp and a skirmish, the siege of Port Hudson, and the destruction of the ship Clara Bell. Corden speaks warmly of Captain Eli A. Griffin.

One letter from Seymour Howell to Corden tells of a minstrel show to celebrate Christmas in 1864. Corden was from Saline, Mich.