Rufus Washburn Carley Civil War correspondence, 1861-1865 | Rare Book & Manuscript Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Rufus Washburn was born in Shelburn Falls, Massachusetts, in 1840. He was a bugler in an army band during most of the Civil War. He initially was part of the Fifth Regiment of the Connecticut Volunteers, later in the 2nd Brigade, 3rd Division, 6th Army Corps. His letters home to his mother, Polly Greene Carley, cover the period May, 1861 to April, 1865 with a two year gap between March, 1862 and February, 1864. He was in the "Army of the Potomac" led by Generals Bank and McClellan during his first tour of W. Virginia, Maryland and Virginia.
When the letters resume, his VI Corps is part of the "Army of Shenandoah" under the command of General Phillip Sheridan, who was appointed by General Grant in August, 1864. It appears that Rufus spent the period of 1864-1865 entirely in Virginia.