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In Their Own Words

November 17, 1862

Civil War Letter Predicted Battle at Fredericksburg

A Georgia soldier in Virginia wrote home to his wife, correctly predicting that the Yankees would advance from Fredericksburg, but incorrectly guessing that this could be the final campaign of the war. He apparently had little faith in the Confederate government.

“…The anticipated marching orders have not yet come. It rained all last night, and is raining today. We trust that the march will be postponed, at least for a few days. It is thought the enemy threatens an advance from the direction of Fredericksburg. For your reflection and consolation, I advance the opinion that the ‘beginning of the end’ of this War is looming in the distance. The recent Northern elections mean peace, but not immediate peace. We may have another active campaign. But if the Government is not permitted to exhibit its wonted imbecility, we cannot reasonably expect to meet any reverses. …”

Source: Anita B. Sams (ed.), With Unabated Trust: Major Henry McDaniel’s Love Letters from Confederate Battlefields as Treasured in Hester McDaniel’s Bonnet Box (The Historical Society of Walton County, Inc., 1977), p. 114.