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In Their Own Words

September 27, 1862

Civil War Soldier Wrote of His Part at Antietam

A Georgia soldier wrote home to his wife, telling her of his part in the Battle of Antietam.

“…we marched out five to meet the enemy. We were on the extreme right. A call was made for two skirmishers from each company. Being just hotheaded enough to love the excitement, I volunteered immediately. We sallied forth and had gone but little ways before we routed the Yankee skirmishers. bank! Bank! went the guns. Whiz! Whiz! went and came the bullets and the Yanks trotted handsomely, while our boys poured it into them thick. … On we went still routing them till we drove them across the river. … We were all the time exposed to the heaviest shelling I have ever seen or heard. Our Brigade followed in the rear. We lay there the balance of the day with nothing to do, but the left wing our our Division had a hard fight…”

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. 27-28.