Dedicated to Pvt. James C. Dobie, 183rd O.V.I. Co. A
James C. Dobie was born in Virginia in 1814. He was the son of James Dobie (1785-1856) and Hetta Brannin (1785 – 1847). He married Pricilla Fisher in 1843 in Union County, Ohio. They had seven children; Elisabeth, Emeline, Oliver, James, Sarah, Olive, and Oscar. James died January 22, 1865.
The Battles of Franklin and Nashville in late November and mid-December of 1864 recorded 479 Union Army deaths; official
A personal story first; while not a welcomed event, our immediate family experienced a devastating Florida hurricane in 2004; Hurricane Charley. What that event taught, besides the power of Mother Nature, is that officially means very little. Deaths on “that” day in our family; zero. Deaths in our family that followed the storm, and that we feel were a result of it; two. Were the cause’s stress, worry, the result of losing a home, or other burdens placed upon them by that outside force? Those were not on any medical reports; but we knew, we could see the sadness in their eyes.
Four Hundred Seventy-Nine, plus how many more? Elsewhere on this web-site you’ll note that I have identified ninety-two deaths while in service; in the 183rd Ohio alone. Other than those that died on the fields of battle, how many of the rest can be directly attributed to those battlefields?
Most likely James C. Dobie first began his army service with the 81st battalion of the Ohio National Guard. In May of 1864 over 35,000 Ohio Guardsmen were federalized and organized into regiments for 100 days service. James Dodie was assigned to the 156th Ohio, Company G at Camp Dennison near Cincinnati. On May 20th seven companies proceeded to Cincinnati, where they performed guard duty. Cos. G, I and K remained at Camp Dennison on guard and patrol duty until Morgan appeared in the vicinity of Cynthiana, Ky., when they were sent to Falmouth, Ky. The seven companies remained on duty at Cincinnati until July 18th, when the entire regiment was brought together at Covington and moved to Paris, Ky. It was soon ordered to Cumberland Md., arriving on July 31st, and went into camp near that city. On Aug. 1st it had an engagement with the enemy near Falck’s Mills, with slight loss. It was mustered out on September 1, 1864.
Immediately, James volunteered for the 176th O.V.I. Most likely, before he could travel anywhere with his new regiment, he was transferred to the 183rd O.V.I which was being organized there in Columbus and in Cincinnati. He was now part of the first company formed, Co. A.
To follow James’s journey through Tennessee see the History of the 183rd on this site. From Columbus until the end of the Battle of Nashville he followed the rest of the regiment. It is shortly after Nashville that he becomes a different kind of statistic, one that is just as heroic as the official ones, and one that may have carried more suffering.
After the two battles the 183rd assisted most of the army chasing Hood’s Rebels south into Alabama. The 183rd was held at Columbia, SC and went into camp. They were back where they began their Tennessee journey. They spent Christmas in camp. Within a couple days they began to prepare for new duties in the east. They boarded ships headed for Cincinnati and then on to railcars to Washington D.C. James never boarded the railcars.
James’s family says records show he became sick after Christmas, maybe December 27th. Disease, dysentery, and infections from wounds was a fate suffered by many during the war. They were present before and after battles. He was moved to Camp Dennison’s hospital when they arrived and died of disease January 22, 1865. He was buried at the camp in Waldschmidt Cemetery.
Waldschmidt Cemetery is named after Christian Waldschmidt from Lancaster, PA, a Revolutionary War Soldier, who buried there. It is one of the most historic spots in Little Miami River Valley. The entire site of the village before the Civil War comprised of 160 acres owned by Nimrod Price. It was selected by General Scott as the location of an army hospital and at the outbreak of the Civil War. There were 349 Union soldiers who died in the hospital buried there, On July 4, 1869, they were all moved to Spring Grove Cemetery in Cincinnati. James is in Sec. 21, Lot C, Grave #749 (#73 in Lot C).
Permission to use photographs; Donald Cummins