In Their Own Words
January 07, 1865
Soldier Missed Son, Still Determined to Fight
A Georgia soldier in Virginia wrote home to his wife, wishing he could see their young son, and still defiant about fighting for independence.
“…Our boy must be of considerable size by this time. He is nearly four years old now. I want to see him with his jeans suit on with pockets in his britches, and a hat on, and see him run and jump. The later part of next year he will be old enough to start school… I want you to start him as soon as you can when he gets old enough and keep him going whether there is any chance to pay for it or not. … There seems to be a general despondency, at this time throughout the Confederacy. I am truly sorry to see this and sometimes I wish I could instill my feelings on this subject in every man, woman and child in the Southern Confederacy. It is natural for some to grumble all the time while many others hearing so much grumbling and despondent chatt have not the spirit to rise above this, but fall under the influence and conclude that we are gone up. And we have had some reverses and bad Generalship, with a prospect of a continuance of the war which makes some good men croak and have the blues, and study over it till they conclude that we are about gone up, and they have their influence. But a large number are yet left who have resolved to die rather than submit to Yankee Rule, and never; never give it up. If croakers would but consider a moment the consequence of subjugation they would certainly talk different. Pen cannot describe nor tongue tell the degradation and suffering of our people if we ever submit. …”
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. 193-194.