ŇI can never make up my mind to go back before I go home, it will most kill me if I have to do itÓ
Camp Convalescent, Alexandria VA
Sunday June 28, 1863
Feeling lonesome and tired of mind I think I will write a few lines to you, hoping it may find you all well at home. I got a letter from you on Friday stating that I might look out for that telegraph on Monday. I have been looking all this week except Monday, but now I shall come on Monday to look again.
I learnt from one of the boys in our Regt. last night that Tom was only 3 miles from here, but I canŐt get there to see him. He got tired out on the march by what I can learn. From all that I have seen and heard the boys say, this last march has been one of the hardest of the whole war. The men fell down dead in quite a number of cases along the road.
There has been a great deal of talk here lately of a general Exchange on the 6th of July. I hope it is not so, for I do not care about returning to the Regt. while this hot weather lasts, and most of all, dear Clara, I can never make up my mind to go back before I go home, it will most kill me if I have to do it, but I canŐt tell. I shall feel hopeful until I hear from you again.
I think there must be about a hundred of our Regt here now, sick and prisoners together. I should like to see Tom if I could but I am afraid I shall not. You can tell Julia he is well, so the Boys told me.
I hope, Dear Clara, before you get this I will have a furlough. Please God that I may. Oh, how much, God only knows how much, I think of coming, yet that privilege may not yet be granted. I am afraid I have offended some of our folks some way, I canŐt hell how, for none of them writes to me. How much I do prize a letter from home.
Dear Clara, I cut them pictures of Ida and Willie off just so they would go in that case I brought with me, so I have all four of them together. Them pictures I brought from [home] are just as good as they ever was, only the case is soiled.
There is not much news here at present so I think I will bring my letter to a close. Take good care of yourself and little ones. Give my best regards to all. God willing, I hope to see you soon. From yours with love and truth, may heaven protect you,
Sergt. Peter L. Dumont