Valley of the Shadow
The War Years
Spring 1861–Spring 1865

Letters & Diaries


Gilkeson Family (1862-1864)

Hugh Gilkeson received several letters from his family over a period of roughly nine years which are documented here. Many topics are covered in the letters, but common themes are family health and the deaths of their parents, farming life, local economy, general views on the confederacy, and attitudes toward slaves. Hugh’s son Willie also writes one letter, discussing his life and studies while living with his uncle.

The following links provide access to the most likely matches in the Valley of the Shadow databases:

Andrew Gilkeson Household

David Gilkeson Household

Andrew and David Gilkeson write again to their brother Hugh in these three letters. The letters cover many topics including farming and harvest prospects, the recent death of their father, and thoughts on the future of the Confederacy.