I would like to hear from anyone who is interested in or had an ancestor in the Fifth Illinois Cavalry. My next book about the regiment concentrates on the families and wives of the soldiers, and their ordeals during the war. The book will be entitled "The Prairie Wives go to War." I am looking for letters or diaries of women and family members who had someone serving in the Fifth Illinois. Please contact me if you have any info about these extremely interesting and brave women.
The third book about the Fifth Illinois follows the soldiers and their families after the Civil War. Many became the pioneers that moved west and settled the country, and their stories are fascinating. Again, if you have info about any soldier and their lives from 1865 until their death, please contact me, and I'll feature your ancestor in the third book. Thanks!
I am also writing a biography about the Fifth Illinois Cavalry's lieutenant colonel: Ben L. Wiley. Wiley was a nineteenth-century renaissance man, who helped form the Republican party in southern Illinois. He is also credited with creating the orchard industry in Egypt, and he fought for farmers' rights, battling the high freight rates of the railroads until his death in 1890. He was a Granger, who held strong to the Republican party, running for office in 1868, 1872, 1874, and for congress in 1876. Contact me if you have any info about this intriguing man.