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R. Baxter Brown Diary

Identifier: Ms-2010-043

Scope and Content

This collection consists of the American Civil War diary of Lieutenant R. Baxter Brown of the Union's Company I, 11th New Hampshire Infantry. Brown's diary notes weather conditions; his regiment's movements through Tennessee, Kentucky, Maryland, and northern Virginia; the departure of some regiments; the re-enlistment of others; and the arrival of new recruits. During July, Brown's diary entries frequently mention actions relating to Jubal Early's raid on Washington D.C. On July 13 he writes, "All business suspended and citizens called to defend the city which is under Martial law." The following day, he reports the presence of three gunboats in the Potomac River. The diary proceeds through the remainder of the year and is appended with a two-page description of his regiment's actions at the Battle of Pegram's Farm.


  • 1864


Language of Materials

The material in the collection is in 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: Reproduction or digitization of materials for publication or exhibit use can be requested using our publication/exhibition form: Please contact Special Collections and University Archives ( or 540-231-6308) if you need assistance with forms or to submit a completed form.

Biographical Note

R. Baxter Brown was born in Candia, New Hampshire. During the American Civil War on August 15, 1862, he enlisted in Company I of the 11th New Hampshire Infantry, which mustered into Federal service on September 2. Appointed a first sergeant, the 21-year-old Brown was wounded in the right breast and shoulder at the Battle of Fredericksburg. After convalescing at Washington D.C. and Philadelphia, Brown received a medical discharge from the service. He rejoined his regiment at Knoxville, however, and at the Battle of the Wilderness temporarily assumed command of Company I following the wounding of the company's captain. At the Battle of Spotsylvania, Brown was wounded in the left hand and was sent to St. John's Hospital in Annapolis, Maryland. He was commissioned a second lieutenant on July 25, 1864 and rejoined his regiment on September 11. At the Battle of Pegram Farm (September 30), he received a serious wound to his left thigh and a slight wound to his neck. He rejoined the regiment in mid-November and served until the regiment was mustered out of service on June 4, 1865. Following the war, Brown worked as a shoemaker. The 1870 census records 29-year-old Baxter Brown living in Haverhill, Massachusetts with 28-year-old Nancy Baxter, and a four-month-old baby, Bertha L. Baxter. In the 1880 census, Richard B. Baxter, a 39-year-old shoe contractor, is listed among the residents of Haverhill. Also in the household is 10-year-old daughter Bertha and a six-year-old son, Lutten. Baxter was still living in Haverhill as of 1891 and is reported among those attending regimental reunions as late as 1896.

External source: Cogswell, Leander W., A History of the Eleventh New Hampshire Regiment, Volunteer Infantry in the Rebellion War, 1861-1865 (Concord, N.H.: Republican Press Association, 1891).


0.1 Cubic Feet (1 folder)


The collection contains the American Civil War diary of R. Baxter Brown, a Union lieutenant in Company I, 11th New Hampshire Infantry.

Source of Acquisition

The R. Baxter Brown Diary was purchased by Special Collections in 2010.

Rights Statement for Archival Description

The guide to the R. Baxter Brown Diary by Special Collections and University Archives, Virginia Tech, is licensed under a CC0 (

Processing Information

The processing and description of the R. Baxter Brown Diary commenced and was completed in June 2010.

R. Baxter Brown Diary, 1864
John M. Jackson, Archivist
2010 (CC0 1.0)
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections and University Archives, Virginia Tech Repository

Special Collections and University Archives, University Libraries (0434)
560 Drillfield Drive
Newman Library, Virginia Tech
Blacksburg Virginia 24061 US