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In Their Own Words

May 04, 1862

Civil War Soldier Wrote of Injured Hand

A Georgia soldier wrote home to the woman who would become his fiance, and later his wife, telling her of being wounded in an engagement in North Carolina.

“…During the engagement a minnie ball struck my left hand mutilating one of my fingers a good deal. My little finger and the one next to it were both somewhat injured. On account of this wound I have been unable to perform any duty since the 19th. At first it was thought that my finger would be amputated; but as yet it hasn’t been done. I am staying in a private family, and am very well treated indeed. I hope my hand will be well in two or three weeks. … Pa is with me yet; but by the recent law, he will leave for home soon. I hate very much to see him leave I assure you. I know I shall be very lonesome and dull. As I can only use one hand I know you will excuse this scribbling. Don’t wait long before you answer this as I’m awful blue. …”

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. 55-56.