Camp Seward

November 7th 1862


[letterhead embossed with small shield]


Soldiers are “suffering beyond description there is 3 inches of snow on the ground and it is so Bitter Cold we cant stand it without suffering considerable”.  Some have made arches in the tent with old stovepipes and built fires but they choke from the smoke inside so “they drive us all out doors where we have to stand and take it.... it snows and blows so we cant cook anything to eat and so we must eat bread and water… The Col has just come from Washington and he says we must pack up and leave in this storm where we are going and how we are going god only knows.”  Rumor they are going to Thoroughfare Gap. 


“I tell you if I only was at home with you now no money would hire me to go through what we go through here the boys have all got the home fever this morning the worst kind…while I am writing Fletch sits in the tent with eating some cold beans from yesterday and Day Bread he says tell the folks we are almost starved and froze to Death he says he has got enough of soldiers life and more to than he Bargain for I wish you could see us just now you would laugh and cry both our tent is all mud and wet and cold as ice I am writing this in smoke so I have to stop every minute to wipe my eyes I am so cold my teeth chatter in my head fletch says tell them the truth…Clara I could not help writing this and letting you know the truth maybe I have done wrong if so tell me so Dear Clara I hope to see you and talk with you and the Children once more and then there will be better times.”