Herman Haupt Manuscript Reminiscences
Scope and Content
This collection contains a manuscript draft written by Herman Haupt, who served as the chief of construction and transportation for the Union Army's military railroad system during the American Civil War. The draft formed the basis of Reminiscences of General Herman Haupt, self-published in 1901.
Haupt's reminiscences focus on his service as chief of railroad construction and transportation. They include Haupt's memories of personal interactions with President Lincoln, his cabinet, and the commanding generals of the armies of the Union. Not included here is the biographical sketch, written by Frank Abial Flower, that appears in Haupt's published reminiscences.
The 349-leaf draft differs markedly from the published book, containing a number of passages--some short, others more significant--that do not appear in the latter. The original preface and introduction, for example, were omitted from the book. At the same time, the manuscript itself is incomplete. Most noticeably, the manuscript lacks the section corresponding to pages 231 to 289 in the book. Meanwhile, a set of unnumbered leaves, perhaps from an earlier draft, corresponds roughly to chapter 21 in the published work, though this set of leaves also includes the final page of what would become, in the book, chapter 23.
Inserted within the draft are Civil War correspondence, telegraph messages, reports, and general orders (originals and typescript copies). Among the correspondence--and comprising the final leaf of the draft--is an 1889 letter from Robert Todd Lincoln.
- ca. 1889
- Haupt, Herman (Person)
Language of Materials
The materials in the collection are English.
Conditions Governing Access
The collection is open for research.
Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use
The copyright status of this collection is unknown. Copyright restrictions may apply. Contact Special Collections and University Archives for assistance in determining the use of these materials. Reproduction or digitization of materials for personal or research use can be requested using our reproduction/digitization form: http://bit.ly/scuareproduction. Reproduction or digitization of materials for publication or exhibit use can be requested using our publication/exhibition form: http://bit.ly/scuapublication. Please contact Special Collections and University Archives (firstname.lastname@example.org or 540-231-6308) if you need assistance with forms or to submit a completed form.
Herman Haupt, civil engineer and inventor, was born in Philadelphia in 1817. Appointed to the United States Military Academy at age 14, Haupt graduated in 1835 and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the 3rd U. S. Infantry. He resigned his commission just two months later to become a railroad engineer. Haupt served as an assistant engineer on the survey for the Norristown & Valley Railroad in 1835 and located the line from Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, to the Potomac River, later incorporated as part of the Western Maryland Railway.
In 1838, Haupt married Ann Cecelia Keller. The couple would have 11 children.
Haupt served as a professor of mathematics and engineering at Pennsylvania College in Gettysburg from 1840 until 1847, when he accepted a position as construction engineer on the Pennylvania Railroad. He became the line's general superintendent in 1849. Two years later, Haupt was named chief engineer of the Southern Railroad of Mississippi. During this time, he published his most important book, General Theory of Bridge Construction (1851). Haupt returned to the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1853, serving as chief engineer until 1856, when he became chief engineer of the Hoosac Tunnel in western Massachusetts.
In early 1862 during the American Civil War, Haupt was appointed chief of construction and transportation for the military railroad system of the Union Army and was initially given the rank of colonel. In September, he was promoted to brigadier general but asked to serve without pay and to be allowed freedom to maintain his private business affairs. When this became impossible to do, he resigned in September 1863.
After the Civil War, Haupt worked as chief engineer or general manager for a number of railroads, including the Shenandoah Valley, the Richmond and Danville, and the Northern Pacific. He also served as president of the Dakota and Great Southern Railroad.
Herman Haupt died in 1905.
0.2 Cubic Feet (1 box)
This collection contains the manuscript draft of the American Civil War reminiscences of Herman Haupt, who served as the chief of construction and transportation for the military railroad system for the Union Army. It includes Civil War correspondence, telegraph messages, reports, and general orders (originals and typescript copies). Among the correspondence is a letter from Robert Todd Lincoln.
Source of Acquisition
The Herman Haupt Manuscript Reminiscences were purchased by Special Collections in 1988.
Rights Statement for Archival Description
The guide to the Herman Haupt Manuscript Reminiscences by Special Collections and University Archives, Virginia Tech, is licensed under a CC0 (https://creativecommons.org/share-your-work/public-domain/cc0/).
The processing of the Herman Haupt Manuscript Reminiscences commenced and was completed in November 2018.
- Herman Haupt Manuscript Reminiscences, [ca. 1889]
- John M. Jackson, Archivist
- 2018 (CC0 1.0)
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
Part of the Special Collections and University Archives, Virginia Tech Repository
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