Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Josiah Hulett and his 30 day Enlistment

Recently in the on-line “Carroll County Times” I came across an article on Colonel (CSA) Harry Gilmor cavalry attack and occupancy of Westminster, Maryland in July of 1864.  He only stayed a day and left to continue his attacks on trains, telegraphs lines, and spreading a general disturbance in the area. The link to the article is here;   http://www.carrollcountytimes.com/columnists/ph-cc-yesteryears-0724-20160721-story.html

Mentioned in the article is Private Josiah Garrett Hulett of the Second Delaware Cavalry (Milligan’s Independent Cavalry) who in August of 1864 was sent to guard Westminster. 

Although the article has nothing to do with Delmar, it and the information below does give you a little bit about what it was like in the civil war for a person with a 30 day enlistment.  Since Josiah Hulett was born in Delaware, let me tell you a bit about him.  Born in 1839 near Yorklyn, Delaware, on the Delaware/Pennsylvania Border to William and Martha Hulett, his father would die in 1850 leaving his widow and children to move in with her brothers.  Josiah Hulett would be educated in Pennsylvania and would teach in a one room school house. 

Like many young men in the American Civil war time period, he had a burst of patriotism and in July of 1864 at the age of 25 he enlisted in the Second Delaware Cavalry for a 30 day enlistment.  To be in the Cavalry at that time you had to supply your own horse, if you lost your horse or it was killed and you could not replace it you were transferred to the infantry for the rest of your enlistment .  In Josiah Hulett case his horse was named “Phil”.  It is not known if Phil was named after Union General Phillip Sheridan, who at this time was leading the Army of the Potomac in the Shenandoah Valley.   

Many Delaware units, like the 2nd Delaware cavalry, saw no combat but instead did guard duty in a wide range of places from Wilmington to Westiminster.  With an enlistment of 30 days one can imagine the amount of military training these units received.    Josiah Hulett would leave the military once his 30 days enlistment was complete.  He would be paid $10.50 for his services.

In 1870 he would marry Margaret Bailey Stotsenburg, take up the life of a farmer, and they would have six children.  The children would ride Phil to school.  About 1887 the Huletts would move to Wilmington where Josiah worked as a bookkeeper and later as a salesman.  He would die in 1919.

The  Mill Creek Hundred History Blog    http://mchhistory.blogspot.com/2011/08/josiah-g-hulett.html  has a number of interesting articles on Josiah Hulett and his family. 

Josiah's great-granddaughter, Jeanne Jackson Dell’Acqua has a letter Josiah Hulett wrote while he was at Westminster and she has allowed me to reprint it here.  It gives insight into his 30 day enlistment.

Westminster (Md.), August 9, 1864

Dear Aunt: (Anna Lareine Peeky Stotsenburg)

As it has been your request that I should write to you if I had time, I will now comply. I had thought of writing before this time but have been very busy mostly. I hardly know how to commence. After we left Wilmington we laid in camp near baltimore about two weeks. On last saturday week about three o’clock we were ordered to pack up everything and be ready to move at a moments notice, where we were to go no one knew. We had thirty rounds of cartridges served out to us (that looked as is we might see something to shoot before long)
About 7 o’clock we had orders to march, we marched till twelve o’clock that night, when we halted for the night, next morning we started again and about eleven o’clock we reached Westminster which place we are at now. Westminster is a nice little town situated on the Western Maryland rail road about thirty miles from Bal. The Union people about here are very kind and liberal. They are the best people we have met with since we left home. They were very glad to see us because they have been plagued by the rebs several times since the rebellion began. About a year ago the rebel army passed through this place on the way to Gettysburg, here the first Del. Cal. had a fight with
them, but the rebs outnumbered them so much that they had to give way. Gen Meade’s army passed through here about 9 hours after the rebel army. There is now one company of the 1st. Del. Cal. here with us. When we first came here we did not expect to remain here so long and quiet as we have. When we were marching up here we met people running toward Baltimore with their horses, saying the rebs were a little way above here. It was thought we might have some sharp work to do but we have not seen any rebs yet. We have captures several fellows supposed to be rebel spies. We picket several roads around here every day and night. each set of pickets stays out twenty four hours. I have always been out on the Gettysburg pike yet. Maryland has been invaded
since we came here but I believe the rebs have left it just now for the present (I guess they are afraid till the 2nd Del. Cal. go home.) Our time will be out next Monday evening. I do not know whether we will get home then or whether we will have to stay longer. We are all hoping we may get off then. It is said that Gen. Wallace has sent a request out here that we might enlist for seventy days more. Whether this is true or not I do not know but I do know that there are not five men in the company that will re-enlist so if we stay we will be compelled to stay involuntarily. I have no fears of this. When we first came here we had to keep our horses saddled all night so as to be ready to mount at any time
(5) 6.
Last Monday night a week ago there was an alarm given and all men that were not out on picket were drawn up in a line of battle in the town. I expect some of the boys were scared. For my part I was out on picket and did not know anything of the disturbance till next day. I have not felt frightened yet. I thought though when we left Del. we might see a big afraid. When we left camp near Baltimore we left ten or fifteen thousand troops in the same woods we came out of. I expect they have moved away before this. The 7th. Del. were amongst the number, We are all well at present except
George Ely. He is quite sick. He is not in camp with us but he is at a private house where the family is very kind and he receives the best of attention. I have been very well since I left home with the exception of three or four days. I am generally in the best of spirits sometimes I think I would like right well to be at home especially when I do not get any letters. I have not heard from the Bailey’s for twoo weeks I do not know why exactly. I would like you to write but if we come home when our time is out I would not be able to get your letter before we leave. When the order comes to March home, we will hail the day with cheerful lay.
Remember me to all my friends. I will have to close as it is now time to water and feed Phil. ( Phil: horse that belonged to J G Hulett) If we should remain here, which you will be apt to know, please write.

Direct J. G. Hulett
Comp. A. 2nd Del. Cal.
Carroll County

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