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In Their Own Words

July 03, 1864

Letter Told of Mail Problems, Action Around Petersburg

A Georgia soldier in Virginia wrote home to his wife, telling her of the difficulty of getting letters out, and what he had seen of the action around Petersburg.

“…the yanks tore up the railroad and stopped communication, and it has been useless to write. There is a man from our Brigade going to start home on furlough tomorrow, and says he will carry this for me, if he gets through himself. My health is very good and we are here in line of battle as usual. … It is very warm and dry here yet. We sharpshooters are not on duty today but will go on again this evening. The yankee line is some distance from us here, but in some places on our left, the two lines are very near each other. The yanks throw shells into Petersburg every day and have killed several women and children. Tomorrow is the day Old Grant was to take a big dinner in Richmond but I rather think he will be sadly disappointed. I have no idea that he will ever take Richmond or Petersburg, but he may trouble us for some time yet. …”

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.156-157.