Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Library & Museums
Scope and Content
The Civil War correspondence of John Griner was acquired by the Center from Griner descendants in 1999.
John Griner, son of Henry and Lydia Nye Griner was born in Erie, New York in 1830. After migrating to Ohio, John Griner married Eva Wolf in Crawford County. Griner worked as a carpenter and cabinetmaker before enlisting in the 3rd Ohio Volunteer Cavalry in 1861 as a wagoner. As part of the Union forces in the war's western theater, the 3rd OVC was held in reserve at the Battle of Shiloh, however, Griner did take part in the Seige of Corinth. Although frequently ill with dysentery, he participated in the march to Tuscumbia, Alabama, and Lexington, Kentucky. In June 1863, Griner was severely injured when he was thrown from and trampled by a runaway team. Griner spent the next year at the military hospital in Louisville, Kentucky, and then at Camp Dennison, recovering from his injuries. Regaining his health temporarily, Griner was placed on detached duty, procuring horses for the regiment. Remaining at Camp Dennison, Griner received a transfer to the 87th Co., 2nd Battalion, Veteran Reserve Corps, serving until his discharge in October of 1864. Following his service, Griner settled at Scotch Ridge, Wood County, Ohio where he continued his profession as a carpenter. He was the father of ten children. In 1884, he moved to Samaria (Monroe County), Michigan where he lived until 1901. That year Griner took up residence in Temperance, Michigan where he died in 1907.
Scope and Content
The collection contains nineteen letters, written by John Griner to his sister, Nancy, during his term of service in the 3rd Ohio Volunteer Cavalry and the 87th Co., 2nd Battalion Veteran Reserve Corps. Only seven, those dated from March 1862 to March 1863, were written while Griner was on active duty. The remaining twelve letters, July 1863 to September 1864, Griner penned from the hospital at Louisville, Kentucky and Camp Dennison, Ohio. Griner described the battefield scene following the Battle of Shiloh, the military funeral of one of his comrades, camp life, and military duties as well as his activities in and around Camp Dennison. The well preserved correspondence also includes a single letter to John Rife in 1884 regarding his Civil War pension for service in the 111th Ohio Volunteer Infantry. A small tintype image of Griner is also included in the collection.
1. John Griner Civil War Correspondence: 1862 (six letters)
2. John Griner Civil War Correspondence: 1863 (two letters)
3. John Griner Civil War Correspondence: 1864 (eleven letters)
4. 1884 letter to John Rife re: Civil War pension & Tintype of John Griner
5. Pension record of John Griner (photocopy)