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This Day in Georgia Civil War History

July 18, 1864

Soldier Wrote from Petersburg, Withstanding Siege Well

A Georgia soldier in Virginia wrote home to his wife; for the time being he was withstanding the siege of Petersburg relatively well.

“…I am glad to get the paper and envelope you sent me, for it is a hard matter to get here. My health is better than it has been in a long time, or in other words I am stout and hearty. … We are still here in the same place and still in line fronting the enemy. We have been here 16 days today. We are not so friendly with the yanks now. All communications, trading, &c., is stopped except an occasional exchange of papers by the officers. There is still no firing between us and I hope will not be till an advance is made. We sharpshooters have not been relieved since we came here, and do not want to be as we have a better position than back at the Brigade. I gave you a sketch of our position in my last letter. We still continue to catch some fish and some days a great many are caught, and our rations are a little better now, so upon the whole we are living well. In addition to this, the boys have pressed a large amount of cider from half ripe apples in an orchard near by, which was quite a treat, but the apples are given out now. Soldiers are up to any emergency that presents itself. …” 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.160-161.