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In Their Own Words

July 22, 1862

Civil War Soldier Unhurt in Battle, but Sick from Disease

A Georgia soldier writing to his friend told a story common to many, of being unhurt in battle, but suffering from sickness.

“I wrote you a day or two after the battles before this place had ended to let you know that I had again had the good fortune to escape unhurt. … I have been quite unwell for the last two weeks. In fact, I have had the diarrhea or dysentery for the last six weeks. And after the hard exertion of the march from the valley of Virginia to the battlefields of Richmond and five days’ fighting, I was so weak and suffering so much that since that time I have been on the sick list.”

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. 171.