Contents and Arrangement

Waterhouse, Frederic A., 1856 August 11-1864

1 box

Collection Overview

Collection Description & Creator Information

Scope and Contents

This group of letters centers around Frederic A. Waterhouse, a young man from Pennsylvania who served with Union forces in the American Civil War. The majority of the letters are between Frederic, his father (E.G. Waterhouse), his mother, and his sister (Lucretia). A few of the correspondents are other family members or friends. The letters vividly trace the impact of the war on one family. The letters follow Frederic's army career from a short-lived stint in the field, to an illness that left him unfit for fighting, to his reassignment to the "invalid corps" and the army's decision to put him in charge of a hospital ward. Frederic's letters from the field and the hospitals describe common war themes: lack of food and clothing, horribly injured men, the desire for the war to end, etc. The letters from the family to Frederic highlight their constant fear for his safety and health, and their attempts to comfort him by sending news from home. The final two letters were written to Frederic's father, informing him that his son was mortally wounded to the head and died November 1, 1864, only a month after rejoining his regiment in the field. The final folder includes 12 of the original envelopes in which the letters were sent.


The collection is arranged alphabetically by name of originator and/or subject; in the Miscellaneous and Provenance Files boxes (Boxes 43-44) the material is arranged alphabetically under the subject (ex.: "Washington, George.").

Collection History


No appraisal information is available.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Rebecca Garcia during the period of November 2007 - October 2008. Finding aid written by Rebecca Garcia in 2008.

During 2022, restrictions on original materials, including items related to George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Abraham Lincoln, were lifted as part of a restrictions review project.

Collection title revised to provide more information about the collection by Faith Charlton in 2022.

Access & Use

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Single copies may be made for research purposes. To cite or publish quotations that fall within Fair Use, as defined under U. S. Copyright Law, no permission is required. For instances beyond Fair Use, it is the responsibility of the researcher to determine whether any permissions related to copyright, privacy, publicity, or any other rights are necessary for their intended use of the Library's materials, and to obtain all required permissions from any existing rights holders, if they have not already done so. Princeton University Library's Special Collections does not charge any permission or use fees for the publication of images of materials from our collections, nor does it require researchers to obtain its permission for said use. The department does request that its collections be properly cited and images credited. More detailed information can be found on the Copyright, Credit and Citations Guidelines page on our website. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us through the Ask Us! form.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

For preservation reasons, original analog and digital media may not be read or played back in the reading room. Users may visually inspect physical media but may not remove it from its enclosure. All analog audiovisual media must be digitized to preservation-quality standards prior to use. Audiovisual digitization requests are processed by an approved third-party vendor. Please note, the transfer time required can be as little as several weeks to as long as several months and there may be financial costs associated with the process. Requests should be directed through the Ask Us Form.

Credit this material:

Waterhouse, Frederic A.; Andre De Coppet Collection Concerning United States History, C0063, Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library

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Storage Note:
  • Firestone Library (hsvm): Box 39