1861 June 26 Martinsburg [Virginia]

My Dear Father:
Your letter of
the 21st directed to the care of Dr.
A.S. Baldwin at Winchester was
handed me by a soldier this evening
saying that it had been given him
by a gentleman on the roadside,
and I immediately reply altho’ I
suppose you have seen letters of
a much more recent date from
me. I am most happy to learn
of the success of the harvest, and
of the satisfactory result of
the crop. The Wheat in this
Section is also unusually
fine, but the corn, and
oats very inferior.

[page 2]
No farther development of
the plans of the Campaign
has transpired since my last
letter, and we have little
indication of what they
will be. We have at
this encampment 4,000
Virginia Troops under Cols.
Allen, Harper, Preston, and
Gordon & Stuart of the
Cavalry. We are assiduously
Engaged in practicing the
drill, and the Commander
Is strict in requiring
attendance at the Camp, and
adherence to Military discip-
line. Very little is generally
known of the position of the
Enemy, or his force. It is
however reported that there
is a Camp of Instruction

[page 3]
at Sheperherdstown, and that
the force there is regularly
Employed in the Construction
of Ferry boats, evidently
intended for the conveyance
of troops across the Potomac,
or to Establish that impression
on our officers.
Occasionally a federal scout
or spy is captured by our
pickets. Two in charge of
an Escort of Cavalry passed
by us yesterday en route to
Winchester, and this evening
a deserter from the Lincoln
Army was arrested and carried
before Col. Jackson for
Examination. I have not
heard what information was
elicited, nor any farther par-
ticular of the transaction.
[page 4]
The health of our regiment is
at present very unsatisfactory,
there being out of some 700
(at most) men the large number
of 120 on the sick list. Our Com-
pany is numerously represented.
Measles is generally the malady,
but there are frequent cases of
cold, and general debility contrac-
ted by the unaccustomed expo-
sure to which we are subjected.
As for myself “I hold my own”, and
few, if any stand better the fatigue
and privations which of course
every soldier must endure.
While at Winchester I
availed myself of a short
respite from duty to visit Dr.
Stuart Baldwin, & family, and
was received with great cordial-
Ity. Uncle S. spoke frequently,
and very affectionately of you, and
expressed a desire to see you if possible.
A visit to him ^ ‘from you’ I have no
doubt would be exceedingly gratifying.

[page 5]
Uncle S. is a very venerable
looking man, with white locks,
but with indication of health,
on his Countenance. He is appar-
ently firm and hearty.
Rumors which continually
occur in the camp, are today
afloat that Beauregard had
stormed, and taken Arlington
heights with the loss of 1300
the enemy. If this be so
I suppose that the Capitol
has been assaulted, and so [?]
this the great, and momen-
tous struggle which has so long
been delayed has ^ ‘been’ decided. the
I am glad to learn
that they are well at
home, and that little Jno.

[page 6]
Is growing, and improving rapidly.
He is a fine promising
child, and unless spoilt will
grow to a useful man.
I am sorry that you
have been unable to
hear of the whereabouts
of Aunt Elvira. I think
it highly probable that
on account of the dangerous
situation of their home,
the whole family have
retired to the residence of
Mr. Eliets’ mother in Penn-
Sylvania. Grandmama was speaking
of sending me a box when
I last heard from her
enclosing some articles which
I needed, and also some
Eatables.

[page 7]
I requested that it should
be sent to Dr. Baldwin’s
at Winchester deeming that
the most certain method
of securing it.
It is expected of me as an officer
to provide my own table, and as
this is very inconvenient
under such circumstances as
I am placed I should like
to get as large a supply of
Eatables – such as bacon, biscuits &c
as can be conveniently
sent.

[Daniel’s letter stops abruptly here and will continue on the 27th]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*