Camp near Potomac Creek, VA

Thursday April 9th, 1863


Is well, in same Camp, no more rumors of moving.  “There will be a grand move I think before we hardley [sic] expect it we had that Grand Review By Abraham Lincoln last Tuesday they say there was 80 thousand troops present we were on the Banks of the Rappahanock and The Rebels were on the other side of it drawn up in line of Battle.  I suppose they thought we were going to Attack them they lay Behind Frederickburg [sic] thick as Ever to judge by their Camps they fired two guns to let us now that they were awake.  Fredericksburg looks forsaken and Dingy Enough now from a distance what a thing this war is Fredericksburg once a thriveing [sic] and well Established City and the oldest one they say in the United States now lies almost Desolate and in Ruins and such marks the tracks of the armey [sic] all over Vigrinaia look where you will nothing meets the Eye But Ruins & Desolation where Houses stood nothing remains but Chimneys to tell there Ever was any and their Occupants have gone mostly all in the Rebel army except the women and Children and they have gone Here and there no one knows Where god help them if they had any influence in Creating this Monstrous Rebelion [sic] for now I think they suffer almost Everything I have seen when we were out on picket some of the little log Houses and their inmates suffering almost Everything little Children scarcely old Enough to know what we were doing down Here were in almost a state of nakedness and in want of something to allay their Hunger poor little things how I did pity them when they would come todeling [sic] through the snow their little bare feet looking like Coals of fire and asking for Hard tacks to stop their hunger who could refuse that had any bit of human feelings left.  I for my part could of given mine willingly and gone without myself just to see them Eat.  I hope Dear Clara never to hear or see you or my little ones suffering as I see them here.  But my telling you of it wont [sic] help it a mite so I will stop.”


“Tomorrow we are to have a grand muster to see how strong the armey [sic] of the Potomac is.  We are expecting to be paid off every day But the pay master Doesent [sic] seem to get along yet we have had a sutter [?sic] here for about 3 weeks and the most of the Boys have spent their money before they even got in getting orders on the Captains if I felt like it I might make a good deal of money in making them pictures such as I sent home.  I have made a good many of them already some offer me 50 cents apiece to make them and they will pay me on pay day.  I have got some money comeing [sic] in that way now I have to mark laurel root for almost the whole Regt to whittle on there is some one running to my tent all the time and I am getting tired of it it is all work and no pay”.   Closing.  P.S. written sideways over text of page 4:  Liet Col White of the 117 was here this afternoon I haven’t learnt whether the Regiment has come or not we Expect them all the time”