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Benjamin Spooner papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: S1229

Scope and Contents

This collection contains general and special orders to Benjamin Spooner and the 83rd regiment from O.P. Morton and Laz Noble. Also included are letters of the 83rd regiment and a petition of commissioned officers. The materials within this collection are Photostat copies and have been arranged in chronological order


  • 1862-1864


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Legal title, copyright, and literary rights reside with Rare Books and Manuscripts, Indiana State Library, Indianapolis, IN. All requests to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to Rare Books and Manuscripts.

Biographical Note

Benjamin J. Spooner was born in Mansfield, Ohio to Charles and Mary Spooner on October 27, 1823. He was schooled in public and private schools in Ohio and Indiana before being apprenticed to a tanner at the age of thirteen. On August 21, 1845, Spooner married Eliza J. Callahan of Lawrenceburg and they subsequently had eleven children together. With the outbreak of the Mexican-American War, Spooner enlisted in the Army and was elected Second Lieutenant of Company K, 3rd Indiana Volunteers. After his service he returned home to Lawrenceburg, Indiana and began to study law with his brother Philip. After being admitted to the bar he began practicing law in Lawrenceburg and was prosecuting attorney for his circuit for two years. At the beginning of the Civil War, Spooner enlisted and formed the first company for Dearborn County. He was commissioned a Lieutenant-Colonel in the 7th Indiana Regiment. After the 7th Regiment was disbanded, Spooner joined the 51st Indiana Regiment as a Lieutenant-Colonel on December 4, 1861. Spooner resigned from the 51st Regiment in June 1862 and later received a commission as a Colonel in the 83rd Indiana Regiment on October 3, 1862. Spooner lost his left arm from the battle at Kenesaw, Georgia in 1864 and was reassigned to a military commission to try Indiana and Chicago conspirators. Spooner was honorably discharged in April 1865. After the War, Spooner was appointed United States Marshal of the Indiana District. He resigned from this position in 1879. Spooner passed away on April 3, 1881 in Lawrenceburg. Sources: Biographical History of Eminent and Self-made Men of the State of Indiana, vol. 1. Cincinnati: Western Biographical Pub. Co., 1880. Report of the Adjutant General of the State of Indiana, vol. 3. Indianapolis: Samuel M. Douglass, 1866.


0.02 Cubic Feet (2 folders)

Language of Materials



This collection is arranged chronologically.

Custodial History

This collection was received by Rare Books and Manuscripts as a donation from Conway Barker on 1967/04.


No further additions are expected.

Processing Information

Collection processing completed 2007/01 by Barbara Hilderbrand. Finding aid revised 2015/10/30 by Bethany Fiechter. EAD finding aid created 2018/05/30 by Lauren Patton.
Benjamin Spooner papers
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Rare Books and Manuscripts Repository

140 North Senate Avenue
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204 U.S.A.