Posted February 17, 1997 by Steven L. Driskell.
December 5, 1904
Iron City, Alabama
To the surviving members of this regiment, either in or out of the state; the undersigned desires to announce that at the suggestion of General George D. Johnston of the city of Tuscaloosa who was the popular and gallant leader of this regiment for nearly four years and at the solicitation of Hon. Thomas M. Owen, Director of the Alabama Department of Archives and History, I have agreed to undertake the writing and compiling a narrative history of the 25th Alabama Regiment during the Civil War of 1861-1865, to be filed in the Alabama Department of Archives.
In the absence of any reliable records or material for this work, I will have to depend almost entirely on my own memory and the memory of other members of the regiment for material for this work.
I therefore most respectively and earnestly invoke the aid and cooperation of all surviving members furnish with me any facts of the service which they may remember. I am very anxious to ascertain from some members of each company when and where and by whom each Company was organized. In conclusion, I respectively ask the press of the state, who are friendly to such an enterprise to please copy this notice. This work on my own part, will be entirely a gratuity.
Wilson P. Howell, Captain
25th Alabama Regiment
March 8, 1906
I begin this preface by a copy of a letter from Hon. Thomas M. Owen, Director of the Department of Archives and History at the State Capitol:
State of Alabama
Department of Archives and History
November 23, 1904
My Dear Mr. Howell:
General George D. Johnston suggests that you are the most suitable person of his aquaintance to undertake the preparation of a history of the 25th Alabama Regiment. I am therefore writing you to know if you will undertake the preparation of a history of this command. I am enclosing herewith our Circular No. 6, which will explain our particular effort in this direction. We have the cooperation of many survivors in what is regarded by all as a very praiseworthy effort and I hope we may have your ready response. If you are willing to undertake this work, let me know and I will send you copies of such material as we have.
You will observe that we only wish a narrative history and not a compilation of rosters. Our rosters will be published by the U.S. War Department.
I am sending you under separate cover, a copy of Professor E. Y. McMorris history of the 1st Alabama Regiment. Your attention is invited to the prefatory note.
Awaiting your early attentions and with regards.
I am yours truly,
Thomas M. Owen
Rev. Wilson P. Howell
Oak Level, Alabama