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RG3942.AM:  John Colby Griggs, 1837-1914

Papers:  1865-1866, n.d.

Hall and Cherry Counties, Neb.:  Soldier, farmer, blacksmith

Size:  1 envelope


John Colby Griggs was born in 1837 in Jackson County (later Bates County and finally Vernon County), Missouri. He married Lucyann Hill in 1854. With the outbreak of the Civil War, Griggs enlisted in the Confederate Army in 1861. He served until late in 1864 when he was wounded and taken prisoner. At the end of the war, he signed up with the U.S. Volunteers to go into Nebraska to build forts. In 1867 he settled his family in a sod house near the Platte River in Hall County, Nebraska, supporting his wife and seven children by farming, hunting, and trapping. In 1883 the Griggs family homesteaded in Cherry County. Mrs. Griggs died in 1884 from gangrene. In 1886 Griggs married Lora Bradish, with whom he had four children. In 1892 Griggs moved his family to Spearfish in the Black Hills of South Dakota, where he farmed and opened a blacksmith shop. He spent his last years in Rapid City, South Dakota, where he died in 1914.


This collection [formerly MS3942] consists of materials relating to John Colby Griggs, his military service in the Army of the Confederacy 1861-1864, and later as a member of the 5th Regiment of the U.S. Volunteers in Nebraska Territory, 1865. The collection includes reminiscences, a diary, and a biography of Griggs written by his great grandson.

The reminiscences were written January 15, 1866 by John Colby Griggs from Fort Reno, Dakota Territory, in which he traces his life in the Confederate Army during the years 1861-1864. The diary covers his service in the 5th Regiment of U.S. Volunteers. The diary entries trace the scouting his regiment did in Nebraska Territory in 1865. A short biography of John Colby Griggs is provided by his great-grandson, W. Clayton Whitney of Huron, South Dakota. Also included are two photographs of John Colby Griggs and Lucyann Hill Griggs.


Envelope containing:

Reminiscences of John Colby Griggs as Confederate soldier, 1861-1864, written in 1866

Diary of John Colby Griggs while serving as a U.S. volunteer in Nebraska Territory, 1865

Photographs (2) of John Colby Griggs and Lucyann Hill Griggs

Biography of John Colby Griggs, written by his great-grandson, W. Clayton Whitney




Griggs, John Colby, 1837-1914

Griggs, Lucyann Hill

Nebraska — History, military


Scouts and scouting

United States — History — Civil War, 1861-1865 — Personal narratives

Whitney, W. Clayton


AIF   12-12-1979

Rev. kfk   10-10-1996

11-09-2009   Revised TMM/tmm