JANUARY 2005

LETTERS WRITTEN HOME FROM THE WAR

Washington, D.C.
January 14th, 1864

ANNIE --- Dearest friend: 

I am not long for this world, and I wish to thank you for your kindness ere I go. You were the only one who was ever kind to me, since I entered the Army. At Chancellorsville, I was shot through the body, the ball entering my side and coming out through my shoulder. I was also hit in the arm, and was carried to the Hospital in the woods, where I lay for hours, and not a surgeon would touch me; then you came along and gave me water and bound up my wounds. I do not know what regiment you belong to, and I do not know if this [letter] will ever reach you. . . . 
But, should you get this, please accept my heartfelt gratitude; and may God bless you, and protect you from all dangers. . . . . I enclose a flower, a present from my sainted Mother; it is the only gift I have to send to you. Had I a picture, I would send you one. I never had but two, one my sister has, the other was sent to a friend . . . . since I will be unable to see you in this world, I hope I may meet you in that better world, where there is no War. May God bless you, both now and forever, is the wish of your grateful friend . . . .

From the book:
Women's Work in the Civil War
by L.P. Brockett, M.D. and Mrs. Mary C. Vaughan, 1867

Natches Missippi        Oct 10th 1863
My Dear little Son!

   Eddie I have not written a letter to you in a long time and I am sure you will be glad to get a letter from your dear Father that loves you as he loves his own life.  You see that I have tried to spell Mississippi and made a mistake, because I was wondering what to say.  Well Eddie I hope you are well and, so I hope Mah and Aunt and Mary and Annie are all well as I am.  Yesterday I got a letter from Aunt Susie and poor Sick Mah.  I was real pleased to get the letter but when I read these words {The Chills} I felt real sorry for her.  Mother has told you that I have left the Sick Hospital at St Louis and gone down the River to Natchez a long ways from you to join My Regment in this State all of a thousand miles from you.  Yet still I may be really nearer home here than I was in St. Louis.  I shall be under the nescesity of quiting as the orders are to strike tents and be ready to move for Vicksburg 110 miles nearer home so good bye my dear little man.

   Vicksburg Oct 14th Wednesday morning.  Good morning my little boy.  hope you feel well.  I am well only feel a lttle chilly as it is a foggy damp morning  We got orders on Saturday afternoon to take down our tents to move so I quit writing but when night came we were told that we could not go until mor-g so we set up our tents again.  Just after breakfast we got orders to strike tents   in a few minutes all was done.  At 1/2 and 11 we got orders to fall in Gen Smith taking the advance.  Next a brass Band then a Regt with their drum Band, then another Regt and so on until the whole Brigade of 5 Regts got into procession and marched through Natchez to the boat.  We have 5 Regments inn the Brig  14 & 17 Wisconsin & the 72nd 11th and 95th Ills.  The 11th and 109th Ills being consolidated making by far the best or I ought to have said the largest Rigment in the Brig - Well we got to the boat we and the 17th Wis got onto the same boat the Thos E Tutt   the others were on the Fort Wayne the Diana J. Springle and the Fairchilds So we started after dark and ran a piece from the City and then stopped all night  Next night night we stopped up above Grand Gulf.  Yesterday afternoon we got to our presant encampment, and are yet awaiting orders to move again.  Some say we are going to be Provost Guards, others that we are going to encamp on the Jackson Road.  No one knowing of of course.  So you see I have sat down these few minutes to write to you.  I hope my dear son you are good to mother, and do not have to be told twice to do what she wants you to do.  I hope you will be a good boy at the table and not make a noise or drum on the table or be naughty as any thing like that will give me pain.  I hope hope to be able to see you this fall yet   It is possible I may not.  But I want all to be good.  God has aid in his holy word {children obey your parents for this is right and well pleasiing in his sight.  You know my boy when I come I want to see a little boy than can look in his Fathers face and say I have been a good boy.  remember and be a good boy at school and good to every one and the Lord Jesus Christ will love you and bless you.  Your Mother always tells me you are her little man and that pleases me you know.  Learn your Sabbath school lessons well   be kind and love those that are your teachers.  And if God spares your life you may grow up a wise and good man.  Now good by as I know dear one that you will love to do what I ask you

   From Your Father Saml Pepper

From the book My Dear Wife, The Civil War Letters of Private Samuel Pepper. Company G - 95th Illinois Infantry 1862-1865.   Transcribed and edited by Franklin R. Crawford

Letter from James Snow to Wife, Elizabeth, in Surry County, NC

General Hospital No 2                                                                                    Div No 1 Ward No 2
                                                                                                                Lynchburg, VA

Dear Wife

   I seat myself this morning to drop you a few lines to let you know how I am at this time.  I am improving quite fast I am better that I was when I wrote last.  I hope when these few lines come to hand they may find you enjoying  good health and also all the children.  I was glad to hear from you and to hear that you were all well and doing well.  I went before the board but could not get a furlough here but I hope that I will get to come home this winter if I get to my command.

   I want you to take the best care of everything that you can and not swap off my horse.  I understand that yu were about to swap him off but you must not let him go.  If you think you won't have anuff to do you of your own raising you had better buy pork this fall.

   Tell Lucinda Jane that I have sent her a testament and I want her to read it and pay good attention to it also a hymn book, 3 pens  3 pen holders  and 22 needles.  Tell William Riley that I have sent him a tract and I want him to read it.  I would be very glad to see you all at this time but it is out of my power.  I want to no if you have drawn enny Salt from the county yet and how much you paid for it and also how much you got and if you have not got anuff so you can make some arrangement to get som somehow.

   I was glad to hear you got the money that I sent you and I want to no how your air off for money and if you need enny when I draw I will try to send you som if you need it.  I have not drew any since I left home but $44.00 but I expect to draw fefore long about $72.00.  I want to no how your garden turned out and irish potatoes, cabbages etc.  Potatoes is worth $30.00 per bushel, corn meal $50.00 per bushel, flower $1.50 per pound, beef $2.50 per pound, bacon $10.00 per pound, butter $10.00 per pound and chestnuts $2.00 per quart and if you have enny you must try to turn them in for leather and cotton.

   I must close by telling you to wright as soon as you get this.  Nothing more but your husband until death.

                            James Snow

Direct your letters to General Hospital No 2 division No 1 ward 3 Lynchburg, VA

This letter is from the book Surry County Soldiers in the Civil War transcribed and edited by Hester Bartlett Jackson.

Alexandria Louisiana
Apl the 28th/64

My Dear Elizabeth

   I shall imbrace the present opportunity of writing you a letter this is a pleasant day & I am in camp resting for the 1st day in a long time   it looks like mid sumer  the fighting seams to be over for a while tho the rebels seams very gentle yet for they keep close to us & day befour yesterday our brigade was scurmishing close anough to them for them to come back & get some hard tack & sow beley but they did not like the way we shook hands with them  it has bin a long time since I have written to you & I do not no any beter plan to tel you what I have bin doing for 8 or 9 days that to take out my day book & give you a few sceches out of it

Apl the 20th/64
oderd to be redy to move  stil in camp at Grandecore La
21st went on picket scurmishing on our left
22nd left the pickets lines at 1 A.M. left Grandecore at day brake Army moving towards Alexandria 1st brigade brings up the rear
23rd 7 A.M. fighting comenst in front 9 A.M. heavy cononading, 12 A.M. atacked in the rear 87th sent to the left flank 1 P.M. Co A on picket on the swamp 4 P.M. rebels routed in front our men taken 4 prisners 87th went to the front 10 P.M. went in camp
Apl 24 got brakfast & fed 7 A.M. sadeld up Army passing 8 A.M. heavy canonading on the river 10 A.M. heavy fight in the rear 87th went on a scout on the rite flank 5 P.M. laying in the line of batle on the tunel hill road
25th stil in line of batle on the tunel hill road scurmishing in the rear 4 P.M. Marcht on 6 P.M scurmishing in the rear 7 P.M. stopt & lay in line of batle all night,
26th 7 A.M. starte 3rd brig in the rear some scurmishing 10 A.M. rebels get in front of our brigade & the 4th Co A drove them 3 P.M. stopt & went in camp 7 P.M. went on picket
27 on piket on the Texas road heavy canonading up the river 2 P.M. still on picket 6 P.M. released from picket went to camp
28 in camp 10 A.M. I am writing a leter to Lizie this beautiful morning finds me well & harty hoping it may find you & my litle childring
altho mess No 1 is cut down in number all the other boys is well & harty John was doing well the last time I herd from hi & it was thought that George Careys hand would have to be cut off so you sea I have not bin idal for several days it has bin that way ever since I lef Franklin it is no use to tel you of the fight for you wil sea that in the papers & I do not like to talk of it for I never shal forget the roar of the 1st day fight
I was leading a horse when we comenst retreating & I never herd such nois & sean such runing in all my life for a mil wide the hole woods was in a roar of horseman & footman & wagons & artilery & the rebels was poring in the batch all the time in our retreating Army a ile or 10 back we found the 19 Corps in line of batle for you sea that they had not come to help us & the rebs was about 4 to our one the retreating column fel back behind them & the rebels come on the & the pord in such a voly of musketry in to the advancing rebels that made the woods trimble this checked them for awhile but they over poured the 19 boys & all fell back to Pleasant Hill & thare we found old Generl Smith with the 16th Corps & on 2nd day we whipt them & drove them back & that night the rebels fell back 16 milds & us 15 milds throing the Armys 30 milds apart but they found out that we was faling back & they turn back & took tge batke feakd I have a good horse now tl Groge that he need not be uneasy about my horse for I have got a good one now it is about 1 hundred 25 milds from here to Mansfeald whare the batle was fought & in coming from thare we rode about 2 hundred milds sometimes I would get so tierd of riding that I could hot hardly stand it very oftain we would ride all night & severl good naps have I taken on my horse & I wil tel you a dream that I dremp on my horse one night about midnight I dremp that I run in among some rebels & they all had swiches & they comenst whiping me & it hurt so that I awake & found my horse had left the rode & was brusing thru the brush & the limbs was flying back & hitting me I turnd him back in the road & found that my Company had gon on past me another time we stopt & I got down & lay down by a stump & of corse was asleep in a minut & when I waked up the Co. had got ahead of me considerable & one day we stopt & all of us was laying down holding our horses & I went to sleep & let him go & when I awake my horse was gon I run round but soon found him piking off a peace from me nearly evry time I lay down with my horse in hand I let him go
now they say sadel up & I must
quit no rest for the wery
M.A.Hooker

A collection of these letters had been sent to me by PatAnder73.  My thanks to her!!!!!

4 Div Hospital 5 A. C.
City Point Va Aug 22/64
My Dear Wife
I write this morning to inform you that I was wonded on the 19th at the battle of Welldon and Petersburg rail I was shot through my right arm by a minnii ball, the bone is not broken therefore I shall save my arm. My wound is in the arm below the elbow
You need not be uneasy about me as my wound is not a bad one and I shall soon recover I am here at City Point Hospital now I want you to write to me soon direct your letter thru Gen Hospital, 4 Div, 5 A. C., City Point Va in care of U.S.S. Com

We have captured and hold the rail road which is of the greatest importance to the rebels, the Rebs, have severel desperate efforts to recapture it but they have been repulse with great slaughter
Your affectionate
husband
Levi McCormick

P.S. You need not be uneasy about your husband, his wound is not a bad one our soldiers have gained a great victory
May God's blessings be with you
William T. Tull Chaplain 4 Del Vol

Levi McCormick was my husband's great-great-grandfather.

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