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In Their Own Words

March 14, 1864

Civil War Soldier Wrote of No More Furloughs and Longstreet Rumors

A Georgia soldier in Virginia wrote his fiance with the sad news that there would be no more furloughs granted for the time being; he mentioned native Georgian General James Longstreet and speculated on his plans.

“…yesterday evening an order came to our Brigade, stopping all furloughs, until further orders. What gave rise to this order; I’m unable to say positively; but ‘Madam Rumor’ says it is to clear the railroads in order to transport Genl. Longstreet’s Corps to General Johnston. Genl. Longstreet and staff were at Orange C.H. a day or two since. I should like very much, for Genl. Longstreet’s command to join Genl. Lee again. I have many friends there. I should like very much to see. … If Genl. Longstreet does come here, I shall at once begin to mend my harness, for a trip into Pennsylvania or Ohio. … There is only one thought that makes the approaching campaign, appear gloomy, and that is the thought that I will almost entirely be debarred the privilege of hearing from you. Perhaps we may go into Pennsylvania or some other foreign land, and then I know I will not only fail to receive your letters; but be unable to send my own. I will make up for lost time, tho, when I get back into civilization. …”

Source: Clyde G. Wiggins III (ed.), My Dear Friend: The Civil War Letters of Alva Benjamin Spencer, 3rd Georgia Regiment, Company C (Macon, Mercer University Press, 2007), pp. 97-98.