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In Their Own Words

April 29, 1864

Two Civil War Soldiers Wrote Wives, One Interrupted, One Had Seen Lee

A Georgia soldier in Virginia wrote his wife on this day, but kept getting interrupted.

“…My health is excellent and I am getting on finely at this time. The weather is pleasant, and we are living high on the contents of our box. We have biscuits for breakfast every morning and cornbread for supper or dinner. I do not know which you would call it, as we only eat twice a day and have no regular time to do that. … The call for sharpshooters to fall in rang out just as I wrote the above, and I had to quit and put out to practice target shooting. We shot two rounds apiece at a distance of 600 yards. … Well Cout it seems I will never finish my letter, but this is the third trial and better luck probably this time. I had just fairly commenced the second time yesterday when some of the brethren of the Mystic called around for me to go with them to the Lodge. I put out with them and did not return till about midnight. The consequence of which is that I feel drowsy today. …”

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), p.141.

Another Georgia soldier in Virginiawrote his wife, telling her of a review by their famous general, but that he preferred to see her.

“…General R.E. Lee reviewed our corps today. There was some ten or twelve thousand men in the field. Oh, if you could have seen it, I would have been so glad and I know that if you had of seen it, I could have seen you and that would have done me more good than a hundred reviews. …”

Source: Ronald H. Moseley (ed.),The Stilwell Letters: A Georgian in Longstreet’s Corps. Army of Northern Virginia (Macon: Mercer University Press, 2002), p. 254.