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In Their Own Words

March 05, 1863

Civil War Soldier Wrote of Missing Son, Friend Dying of Smallpox

A Georgia soldier writing home to his wife talked of missing their son, and of his near miss experience with smallpox.

“…I am truly glad to hear that Henry’s cough was getting well, and that he was so pert. Poor little fellow, no doubt but what he missed his Pa, and looked for him every morning, but alas! in vain as you say, for we are many miles apart now. It looks hard and it almost breaks my heart to think of you and him there alone, but these troubles are upon us and we must try to submit cheerfully. … Cicero Cloud died today, at the Division Hospital about a mile from here. He died of smallpox. … This I fear will have a tendency to render you all uneasy about me, but it need not, as I was not in the tent with him…”

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), p. 55.