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In Their Own Words

September 15, 1864

Sick Civil War Soldier Insisted Wife Not Worry

A Georgia soldier in Virginia wrote home to his wife; he was having trouble shaking an illness, but still encouraged her not to worry about him.

“…I am sorry to say that I am no better…and I fear I am worse. I hate to write so discouraging, but if I write atall I have to tell the truth. It seems that I have gotten into a low state of health and it is a hard matter for me to take a rise. I have an every other day kind of dumb chill or something and severe headache and fever but not much fever either. The Dr. says it is very near fever. I take medicine on my well days but there is not much well about any of them. My appetite is good and they feed us well but nothing I eat agrees well with me. I am getting pretty weak and poor and I get gradually weaker for the last few days. Now this is about as gloomy an account of myself as I could well put up and since I have been so frank in telling you, you must not by any means let it render you uneasy, for I am not low spirited myself, and still hope that I will have the pleasure of writing you in a short time that I am improving fast. … Do write soon and do not be uneasy about me. May God bless you. Pray for 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.168-169.