ŌThe news of the riots and the resistance to the Draft has tended to dishearten the soldiers very muchĶ


Camp Parole VA

[Thursday,] August 20, 1863


Dear Clara,


I write you today because I hardly know what else to do with myself.  I have not got any letter from you this week although I expected one yesterday.  I am well, that is to all appearances, but my bowels have not been in a good state for a week past.  I have eaten a mess of new potatoes and a couple ears of green corn.  This may have upset me some.  They are giving out whiskey and quinine here twice a day but my stomach wonÕt bear it.  I drinked it once and I was sick afterwards so I donÕt drink any now.  I donÕt know but it is good as a medicine, but the men shamefully abuse the privilege.  They have got some draw their rations and give them away to others and they get beastly drunk on it.  One young boy here drank so much that he lied in fits all day afterwards.  If there is many dying here from yellow fever, they keep it still from us, for I have not seen a case of it yet.  But one thing is sure, they would not give the men whiskey for nothing.  There is some contagious disease amongst us, and a bad one too, but it is kept still.


The weather is somewhat cooler than what it was.  It is getting so cool nights that it takes 2 blankets to keep warm.  We donÕt hear much about our exchange yet.  It is the Opinion of some that they wonÕt exchange us at all.  The New York Herald says there is no probability of an exchange, on the grounds that the Rebels refuse to exchange on the old Cartel.  If they donÕt exchange us, I hope to get home in a few days, as there is some talk of giving us all a furlough.  Oh, dear Clara, I want to see you so bad, I donÕt know what to do.  I have sent you 25 dollars and I hope you have got it before now.  I have got the ColonelÕs recommend and that may go a good ways towards getting me a furlough.


The news of the riots and the resistance to the Draft has tended to dishearten the soldiers very much at the present time.  If we had a hearty and cheering response from the loyal states, it is the general belief this Rebellion would not last long, but this sudden outbreak of men at home will have a tendency to prolong the war a great while longer.


I have wrote all the news that I can think of at present so I will close.  Keep up courage, my dear Clara, and all may yet be well.  I hope to hear from you today.  Kiss the little ones for me and take good care of yourself for my sake.  Give my love to all my folks and all inquiring friends.  God bless and comfort you in your loneliness.


From your husband ever true with love,

A kiss [encircled]

Sergt. Peter. L. Dumont.


Excuse this bad writing for my [missing word] is awful poor.  Write soon.