Parole Camp Anapolis Mayrland [sic]

Sunday May 17th, 1863

 

[sketch of man drinking coffee in tent, eagle with banner reads “LIBBY PRISON RICHMOND, MAY, 1863”, under sketch says “made in Libby Prison Richmond May the 9th 1863 by P.. Dumont 146 Regt NY Vols

 

Dear and Beloved wife

Thanks be to god that I am alive and well and god knows how I hope this may

[p.2 and 3] Read strait [sic] across

find you the same  I suppose long before now you are thinking that I am killed or Else taken prisoner  we left Camp the next morning after I wrote that last letter and little did I think it would come true so Quick what I spoke about on the 27th we commenced moveing [sic] towards the [sic- missing word?] marched all day and camped on old Camp misery on the 28th it commenced Raining But we marched all day  Crossed the Rappahanock at 12 oclock the Enemy Retreating before us  took Quite a number of Prisoners without fireing [sic] a gun  Reached the Rapidan River about dark here we had to pull off all our Clothes and wade the River up to our waist and the water was Bitter Cold  some kept their Clothes on and laid in them wet all night here our Lieut Col told us this would be a grand thing to tell our sweethears of when we got home  on the 29th we got up very Early in Rain and mud marched all day fording Quite a number of small streams the 146 ordered to United States to Capture a Rebel force there when when [sic] we came upon them they fled in great haste leaving Behind them doe [sic] they were mixing for Bread  Camped in a dence [sic] forest for the night on the 30th we marched all through the woods Backwards and forwards taking some prisoners and at night Camped near Chancelorsville [sic] where we Had an order read to us Congratulating our Corps on its success and said now the Rebels had to come out and fight us on fair grounds or Else make an unglorious Retreat   this Came from Hooker after dark 10 men out of each Company in our Regt went out in front near the Rebels and done Picket duty all night  May the 1st this morning drawed in our pickets and dealt out 20 rounds of Extra ammunition [sic] to Each man about 8 oclock our division began to move to the front the infantry [sic] Regulars went in and opend [sic] the fight  our Regt the 5th N.Y. and the 140th Brought up the third line of Battle  Every body said it was the most dangerous spot to form a line of Battle they ever saw we mad [sic] a flanking movement through the woods and while going through we had to halt very frequently at one of these Wm Givens had his leg Badly Broken By a piece of shell  a piece of it struck me on the calf of the right leg as big as a marble But it had lost its force [p.4] it only hurt for a little while But it is Black and Blue yet I stood Close to givens when he was struck another one Menzo [?] S. Gibbs had the top of his skull Blown off by the Explosion of a shell Covering fletch Dimbleby with blood after this we moved to the left in line of Battle and the 146 Regt  was ordered by gen Sykes to Support weeds Battery  we imediately [sic] moved to the Right and laid about 20 paces in Rear of the Battery Shortly after Co B. of the 146 was ordered off to the Right to skirmish  they being on the Right of the Battalion  Shortly after Co A was odered [sic] to follow onley [sic] farther on the Right here one of our Company got Badly wounded In the arm  the Rebs poured volly  [sic] after volly [sic] into us But we were in a deep woods and they could not see more than one or two of us at a time  Soon they advanced in line of Battle and we had to fall Back there Being onely [sic] two Companies of us  then they heard us Runing [sic] through the woods and they opened a deadly fire through the woods But we Escaped unhurt though the woods was alive with Bullets then we got down where the Battle had Raged the hardest and the Capt happened to think he had not Been ordered to fall Back  [p. 5]  He thought he had Better go Back again So he told us to follow him as far as he went most of the Company done so  we had not gone far when we halted and heard them Coming through the woods  the Captain told me to come with him and we advanced up as far as a Rail fence  the Captain jumpt [sic] over it and I laid down and stuck my gun through the fence Ready to fire when they come in sight the Capt said he thought it was our Regt coming Round to skirmish with us But the Brush was so thick you could not see them untill [sic] they Came Right upon us  the first I knew the Capt made a leap over the fence and about 200 balls followed after him   they fired in the Direction I lay and it would have been Certain death to me to have moved as it was I happened to look to the right of me along the fence the [sic] stood a Rebel with his gun leveled at my head onley [sic] about 20 feet from me to of withdrawn my gun Back through the fence and fired at him would have been imposible [sic] for he could Easily of shot me before I could of done the first thing so there was onley [sic] one Course to Pursue and that was to surrender and Be made a prisoner of war they took my gun & Catridge

[p. 6 and 7] Read straight across

Box away from me and marched me in their lines where I came across the first Lieut of our Company we kept together and was marched around Considerable until [sic] night when we were put under Charge of the Provost guard and they marched us to a place where they had about 15 more of our Co prisoner they had about a hundred in all  I will mention their names  There was Dimbleby Sergt Leary and myself  the first Lieut E. R. [?] Mattison John Latham.  James ward. John weeb [?] alonzo murry. John [Klemson?] Wm A Palmer.  John Plunkett. Micheal [sic] Keating.  Jos Corrigan.  Timothy Larmour  Thos Jones.  A. Parks. And the Captain was wounded in the arm and leg and also made prisoner  I cant think of all their [sic-missing word?} just now  the next day they started us for the Rail Road to go to Richmond But when we got near the Depot they heard it was all torn up By our Cavelry [sic] so they ^marched us 2 days and one whole night without any rest or any thing to eat at last we Brought up at Hanover Junction where we got four Hard tacks and a quarter pound of pork for a days Rations  I had four dollars and a half when I arrived there & I spent it in the same day for something to Eat to stop my hunger  you may not Credit this very well But let me here say that in Richmond you may pay 10 dollars for a Breakfast and not an Extra one at that [crossed out word] we remained at Hanover Station until May the 7th when we started on foot at 12 oclock for Richmond  Distanced 25 miles  we Reached it the same night but Remained outside of the City this was the hardest march I ever had 25 miles in a half day it was more than some of the boys Could Endure  on the morning of the 8th we were confined in Libby Prison at Richmond  the people Called us yanks and Damed [sic] Yankees & Blue Bellies while passing through the town we were paroled on the same day here we lived very scantily one quarters of a loaf of soft Bread as big as our 5 cent love [sic] and a quarter of a pound of salt pork was all we had to eat for one day this we drawed about Dinner time of each day I eat Coffee grounds to help stop my hunger we lived this way until the 13 when we left our prison and started again on foot for City point on the James River Distance from Richmond 40 miles we marched all day up until 10 oclock at night on the acount [sic] of rain and darkness  2 men were badly hurt and one Killed by falling down Embankments I and fletch [p. 8] marched together hold of one anothers hands to keep [missing words?] I never saw such a time in all my life  Speaking the truth you could not see your hands before your face the prisoners stopt [sic] in the Road and would not go any farther  So we staid [sic] where we stoped [sic] until [sic] morning we started again and got to City point at 12 oclock where lay our transports to take us away there was four of them fletch and me got on the Ocean Steamer S. R. Spaulding  Here we got plenty to eat one loaf of bread and all the meat we could eat they took 12 hundred on our boat and started for fortress Monroe got there about 9 oclock the next morning where we stopt [sic] for orders about 3 or four o clock we started for the Parole Camp Md. Where we are for the present one mile from Annapolis  we have drawed all new Clothes on the acount [sic] of being Louzzy [sic] we got covered with them in Libby Prison   I supposed Dear one you have mourned me as one lost among the killed or wounded But thank be to god I am neither one  I was in hopes that I might come Home when I got Here But they say it cant be done  I would like you to send me some money for I am in great need of some and perhaps it may be possible for me to come after all  I shall try my Best to come home as soon as I get a letter from you Direct your Letter to Sergt P.L. Dumont Co A 146 Regt. N.Y. Vols Camp Parole Annapolis Mayraland [sic]  Excuse me for not writeing [sic] more for I am in a hurry to send this to let you know that I am amongst the living god Bless you and yours my Dear one give my love to my folks from your Husband Peter L. Dumont  I don’t know any thing about tom as I was taken in the first days Battle.