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In Their Own Words

January 01, 1865

Little Food, Cold on New Year’s Day

A Georgia soldier in Virginia wrote home to his wife on this New Year’s Day, talking about various things.

“…Bread rations are very short now, and we failed to get any atall today. The excuse is that they cannot get it on the cars to us. I hope it will be remedied soon. … Yesterday we drew crackers but only little more than half enough of them. Tomorrow we are to get the big New Year’s diner, and it will be welcomed heartily I assure you. Today is or was Sunday, and was a clear, beautiful, cold day. I mean beautiful to look upon not to feel. It snowed yesterday evening and last night, and the ground was covered with snow today… I now think there is some chance for me to get home yet this winter, but it is so uncertain that you need count but little on it. … The spirits of some of our troops is rather dull, but generally speaking all are in good heart yet. We have some croakers here but not so many as you have there at home. I hate to hear them talk, but it is natural for some. I have no distant dream of ever giving up. Yankees may kill me but will never subjugate me. …”

Source: Jeffrey C. Lowe and Sam Hodges (eds.), Letters to Amanda: The Civil War Letters of Marion Hill Fitzpatrick, Army of Northern Virginia (Macon: Mercer University Press, 1998), pp. 193-194.