My great-grandfather, Charles W. Concklin, fought in the Civil War. He was in the Wisconsin 10th Infantry which was mustered out in November of 1864. He returned home and worked with another man to assemble their own unit. They were activated in February 1865 but the war was winding down by then and their unit saw no action.
He was a member of the American Legion Post, Grand Army of the Republic (GAR), in Milwaukee and apparently sometime early in the 20th century they encouraged those who remembered the Civil War (or the War Between the States, if you're from the South) to write down what they remembered of the war.
CW Concklin wrote 17 hand-written pages which have come down in our family. Here is a scan of the first page followed by a scan of a complete type-written version I produced a number of years ago. Stars (*) indicate a paragraph break not found in the original. (date posted here = 9/20/2007)

 

I just discovered that everything in this column carries over to all the other pages!

 

Another learning opportunity!

 

If you read this here you will have to go to our "ANNUAL (CHRISTMAS) LETTERS" page to finish it.  It continues after Jan's section "A."

Concklin’s (Richard and Jan) Christmas Letter for 2018.

 

Part B, by Richard, (Optional at no extra charge),

 

In the business world reports that are sent up to the executives begin with an “Executive Summary.”  This is about half a page that gives an overview of the report and enables the decision makers to decide if it is necessary for them to wade through all the details in the full report.

 

Someone in my MBA program suggested that it had more to do with the attention span of the leadership . . . .  However that may be here is your executive summary.

 

We want to look at 2018 in terms of things that ended, things that continued, and things that started during the past twelve months.  We do have a single item under the heading of things that resumed

 

The details below are offered for three reasons.

            1.  History.  It is a written summary of a year of our lives and sometimes it is fun or even interesting for us to go back and see what we were doing five, ten or even twenty plus years ago.  I have a personal history of the Civil War (the War Between the States for those of you south of here) written by my grandfather’s father.  (you can read it by selecting Civil War page above).

            It is seventeen handwritten pages which I treasure and which make me wish he had written more.

            2.  Reflection.  We get so busy surviving in the present and worrying about the future that the past just fades into oblivion.  But the past holds the reminders of God’s faithfulness, blessings, and love and occasional forays in that direction are healthy.

            3.  Lastly, it is, for me, prompted by the Golden Rule (Matthew 7:12).  I find myself thinking and wondering about people that God has privileged me to know.  I wonder how you are doing but my prayers for you are really just a shot in the dark. 

I very much enjoy getting updates and hearing about how things are going with you and it seems only appropriate to publish God’s faithfulness in our lives.  I can’t complain about not hearing from you, if you never hear from me.

            For those who hate people who write long boring letters at Christmas time about family members you barely remember, I can only say, “Deal with it.”  (with a loving tone, of course)

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I.  Endings:

            Involvement with Milwaukee/Myanmar Church. (pronounced Mee-an-mar) After eight years, the leadership at Myanmar Christian Fellowship, MCF, was gradually turned over to the Burmese pastor during 2017 and reorganized as an independent church.  Our final meeting with the leadership was in January 2018 and although we will no longer be involved with them we wish them God’s very best in the years ahead.   

 

        Fatal car crash. The deer died, but not before doing twenty-one hundred dollars worth of damage to the driver’s front fender on our RAV4.  A hunter complete with a pickup, camo shirt, and cased rifle, stopped to see if we needed help.  There was nothing he could do as the police were on their way to do a report and the car was drivable. At my urging he went back and picked up the freshly killed deer carcass.  Now the car is fixed and looks fine and the deer, presumably, is lunch meat.

 

            Contact lens use in November.  Instead of reading glasses I had been using contact lenses to give me long distance vision and reading vision.  In November I realized that I could get along without the lenses and not have the daily care they required.  Reading was a bit harder but I could squint and make out most of what I needed to read.  I have a magnifying glass in my pocket, just in case.

CONTINUED TO THE RIGHT ON "ANNUAL LETTERS" page  -------------->

 

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