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This Day in Georgia Civil War History

August 25, 1861

Soldiers Wrote Home, Thinking of Family and Farm

A soldier in Cobb’s Legion from Georgia wrote a letter back home on this day, showing that his thoughts were with the family and the farm, and insuring that he was in good health.

Richmond, Virginia: August 25, 1861 Dear Father: I now take my pen in hand to inform you I and James are in good health and hope these few lines will find you the same. Now, Father, I must write a few words to you. I want to know how you are getting along with the crop. I want you to superintend it right. Are you done sowing fodder? Is the cotton ripening fast? Is the com full out nice? Is there many watermelons in the new ground? I want you to write to me about all this. I want you to repair the house. I never intend to get a furlough to go home ‘till you write to me you have finished the house. I want to bring some of my friends home with me when I come. Now I must speak of something else. The Volunteers are the finest company in the legion. We have the best violiners and the best dancers, the best jumpers, the fastest runners, the best wrestlers. We had the best wrestling last night you ever saw or heard tell of. Charley Madison and the Bryan boy got together last night, and Charley throwed him the hardest fall he ever had in his life. Our street is full every night. We strike a ring and clean them out. I thought to find hard, hearty-looking men, but they are no better looking than they are in Georgia. But old Virginia can better her for horses and cattle. I have saw since I have been here two buzzards, two honey bees, six pigeons, one crane. Here is plenty of fruit and watermelons and ground peas for sale. Here corn is fine and just in roasten ears. You think people in Georgia loves money, but they don’t care anything for it. But if you will come here, you will see people that loves money! Dear Mother, do you think hard of me not telling you goodby? I ask you to pardon me for doing so. You said I had not wrote, yet I have wrote to Sue and I will write to you. I did not wish to bid you and Sue farewell weeping. If I could have bid you farewell smiling, it would have been joy to me. I get along fine, all but cooking. We have hired us a cook. Twelve of us pays him $11 a month. I saw sky rockets shooting up in the city last night. It is reported today Washington is in our possession! Benjamin Mobley

Another Georgia soldier also wrote home on this day - telling of the fine meal he had eaten, then encouraging his brother to stay at home with their family.

“I have eaten dinner and what a dinner I did have! I made the butter and syrup fly, you may be sure. You know how I used to eat that old black syrup that we had in ‘59? Well, just like I ate that I eat here, maybe a little more so. I made the best biscuits I have had in some time. Then we had with that good old sheep meat, which was just as good as anything could be. One of the boys of our mess hollered, saying, “Come up here [to] the 9th Regiment and eat of our mutton. It is just as good as you ever saw in Georgia. Come up and eat of it.” “Thomas, Sister E. said in her letter that you wanted to come to war. you listen to me, will you? I say I would not come if I was in your place. You had better stay there with Mother and Father and take care of them. They need protection. Where shall they get it if you come to old Virginia? Why, they cannot get it and you must stay there. You must not come to the conclusion that you would not be instrumental in gaining the rights of the country because you are not in the state of old Virginia but he reconciled with what you are doing and stay… .” 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. 59.