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In Their Own Words

April 15, 1864

Civil War Soldier Spent Birthday Chasing Escaped Prisoners

A Georgia soldier in Virginia wrote home to his wife on his birthday, and how he had spent his birthday chasing some escaped Yankee prisoners. He also shot down a rumor of a friend’s supposed death.

“…Robb is well except for a bad cold and wishes to know who said he was dead. He says he knows they told a lie. So write us word who told it. Only think: today I am 33 years of age, and it has been a day long to be remembered, for I have assisted, or rather I have been the main leader, to arrest ten men, and gave the eleventh one a hard run for his life. I started from here this morning before day and we have just returned. I have been over my knees in mud and water all day, hunting and chasing them. …”

Source: Mills Lane (ed.), “Dear Mother: Don’t grieve about me. If I get killed, I’ll only be dead.”: Letters from Georgia Soldiers in the Civil War (Savannah: Beehive Press, 1990), p. 288.