University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

The items in the Digital Collections of the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Library contain materials which represent or depict sensitive topics or were written from perspectives using outdated or biased language. The Library condemns discrimination and hatred on any grounds. As a research library that supports the mission and values of this land grant institution, it is incumbent upon the University Library to preserve, describe, and provide access to materials to accurately document our past, support learning about it, and effect change in the present. In accordance with the American Library Association’s Freedom to Read statement, we do not censor our materials or prevent patrons from accessing them.

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Henry W. Funk Letters (Digitized Content)

The digitized content of the Henry W. Funk Letters consists of the personal correspondence of Henry W. Funk, and his family and friends, from 1862-1900.

Henry W. Funk was a member of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) from Danville, Illinois, who enlisted as a private in Company E of the 149th Illinois Volunteer Infantry. Funk was mustered out of Danville on February 6, 1865. He spent the remainder of the Civil War stationed in Chattanooga and Tyners Station, Tennessee. He was then stationed at Dalton and LaFayette, Georgia, from June 1865 until the beginning of 1866. There, he often preached to the enlisted men.

The digitized content contains the correspondence of Henry W. Funk, mostly with his wife, Nannie. Other correspondents include Funk's sisters, Kate Brenner, Barbara Funk, and Fanny Funk, his brothers-in-law, Rufus Humphrey and John H. Gibson, and other family and friends. Topics of correspondence include Henry's experiences preaching to enlisted men and his attempt to establish a Sunday school at Camp Butler (Springfield, Illinois), Nannie's struggles with her faith, Nannie's reports on the fall of Richmond and Lee's surrender, John H. Gibson's report on the poor conditions at Camp Butler, reflections on Lincoln's assassination and its aftermath (letter to Funk from Rufus Humphrey, April 20, 1865), and family news.

The Illinois History and Lincoln Collections unit at the University of Illinois Library manages the physical items of the Henry W. Funk Letters, 1862-1900 (MS 987). The collection was completely digitized in 2022. For more information, contact an archivist at