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Record 213/294
Description 
One piece; circular with flat top surface into which is carved "IDA"; broken at ends of tapered sides, unknown if originally a complete circle. Made of mule bone by Joseph Arnold for his sister, Ida Arnold, while he was imprisoned at the Confederate prison, Belle Isle near Richmond, VA, from 1863 until March 7, 1864. See archives for translated letter dated August 8, 1864 in which Arnold wrote "I am sending along a ring for Ida, which I made on Belle Island, and meant to bring home in person. It is made of the bones from the mule meat, which the Rebs fed us." Joseph Arnold was the son of Frederick and Margaret (Mack) Arnold, both from Bavaria, Frederick came to America in 1835 and married Margaret several years later, 1843 family moved to Milwaukee, WI, and in 1851 to Oshkosh. Frederick was employed as a soap and candle maker in 1857. Joseph was employed as a butcher according to the 1860 census. Joseph went to Milwaukee in April 1861 and enlisted in Company H, 1st Wisconsin Infantry (Three Months Regiment). He served in Virginia and saw action at the Battle of Falling Waters. He mustered out of service on August 15, 1861. Joseph reenlisted in Fond du Lac on August 15, 1862, as a sergeant in Company E, 26th Wisconsin Infantry (Seigel Regiment). He fought in the battles of Chancellorsville and Gettysburg (where he was captured on July 1, 1863) and was a prisoner of war at Belle Isle near Richmond, Virginia until March 7, 1864. He participated in the Atlanta Campaign, March to the Sea, and the March Through the Carolinas. He was promoted to 1st Lieutenant on February 11, 1865 and commanded the company as senior officer and briefly commanded Company H. He mustered out on June 13, 1865. After the war he operated a restaurant and bottled mineral water in Oshkosh. He married Matilda Moss on November 24, 1868 and raised four daughters. Arnold was active in the Grand Army of the Republic and was commander of the Phillip H. Sheridan Post #10 in Oshkosh. He died in 1898.
Ring -THE CIVIL WAR -Copyright Oshkosh Public Museum
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Last modified on: December 12, 2009