These materials all date from the American Civil War era. They primarily relate to the people and history of Oneida county, New York. Hamilton College is located there. Much of the collection relates 117th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment mustered in on August 8, 1862 at Oneida county. The collection also includes letters and diaries of people from other regiments, such as :
The papers from the 117th include almost 1,000 enlistment papers for this regiment formed in Rome, NY, in July and August of 1862. It was assigned to the Army of the Potomac to defend Washington, D.C. The regiment was later attached to the IX and X Corps and participated in major battles such as Cold Harbor and the Battle of Petersburg and mustered out in May 1865.