ŇI canŐt see what they were out drilling for on Sunday, perhaps this is a lesson from GodÓ
Camp near Potomac Creek VA
Sunday, April 19, 1863
With the blessing of God I well at present and hope these few lines will find you all the same at home. I received your letter last Friday night and I was glad to hear from you and that the children were better. We have not gone yet but they say we are going tomorrow morning. They have kept giving us our rations as fast as we eat them up, so we still have 8 days rations and orders to move tomorrow morning. Today they are removing our sick to Washington. Men that has been in the service for a long time say that this is the most curious move they ever saw. Everything looks so strange.
Dear Clara, I have sent you 40 dollars by mail and I hope you will get it. I canŐt imagine how you got along and have 3 dollars left of that money I sent home. I am afraid you are living too close, you will get poor as a snail. I am afraid the next time I send home money I will have quite a sum. I will draw all SergeantŐs pay next payday.
You say it is six months since I left home. I guess it is more. I have been in the service now 8 months, lacking 3 days, and I pray God it wonŐt be 8 more before I see home and wife and my beloved little children. It seems as if I had been here a year. You spoke about getting the same usage the poor girl got. I think you would have to wait about a week after I got home first. You see, hard tack and salt pork donŐt make us very anxious for that kind of business. It is hard work to know what a hard jake is at present.
I think I like the old Red Head, as you call him, better every day I am with him. He is a thorough disciplinarian and if anybody has a mind to they can get along with him first rate. If the men do wrong they will find him their equal any day. He is a man possessed of tender feelings of which I know by his treatment towards our sick men. Anybody that wants to do right and obey him will like him the more they see him.
There was an awful accident just happened here while I am writing this letter. I have just been out and seen it. One of our Batteries was out drilling and an ammunition box blowed up filled with shells. 3 men were wounded, 2 of them mortally and one not so bad. The men all started on the Double Quick thinking the Rebels were attacking, as it made a dreadful noise. I canŐt see what they were out drilling for on Sunday, perhaps this is a lesson from God to them to abstain from future actions of the same kind.
God grant, dearest one, that this may find you well and the little ones. Give my love to all the family and may we, God willing, soon be united again. Hoping that all may yet be well, I remain, your true and loving husband,
Sergt. Peter. L. Dumont
P.S. I will send you my picture if I can get it taken and some more money if that comes home all right I sent before. Write soon.
I have just heard that Joe Hooker has broke his leg falling from his horse.