1861 Dec[ember] 1 Camp near Centreville

Camp near Centreville
Sunday Night Dec 1 “61

My own darling Jennie
Since dark I have Received
orders for starting on advance guard, to start
early in the morning & be absent three
days. This order comes a day sooner
than I expected and give me no chance
to apply for my leave of absence be-
fore starting. but I will as soon as I
Return & then write to you. And I
suppose it is just as well that I cant
apply for it would now be Refused
whereas I think I will certainly su-
cceed when I Return—if there is
no fight before that time. Our Genls
for a week or more past and even
yet are expecting an attack on the
batteries at Evansport which if made
our division is assigned to the
duty of meeting the gentlemen. But
if this attack is not made before to-
morrow night then I dont expect it
and I dont think Genl Johnston will
either until the United States Con-
gress has had a bardward over
the matter which will of course
last two or three weeks. I therefore
hope to be with you the last of this
week but will cheerfully compro-
mise on to day week. You must
therefor begin to look your very
prettiest. get well of all aches & pains
and be prepared to be very gay while

[page 2]
I am with you. My friends here think
I am certain to Receive [a] Colns commis-
sion from Gov Letcher. if so, I will
get it very soon after Xmass and
will of course be imediately Released
from duty here. and as the first
of my labors will be in Rockingham
You will go there with me.
Monday Morning—The drums are now
beating Reville and in a few moments
this great army, which a moment
since was silent in Repose, will be
all alive with active preparations
for the duties of the day. Last night
was cold & windy & I did not sleep well
I dreamed of you & of sleeping with you
the dream was certainly not suggested
by the comforts of my tent—which were
bad enough in Summer & are now
almost nothing—Oh darling—my precious
wife I do want so much to see your
sweet face & be with you all the time
You tell me to prepare for all sorts of
attentions from you & the children. I as-
sure you I need no preparation. If I
was with you this morning I would sub-
mit to anything & and no matter what
others would do to me it would be
very nice & sweet & all perfectly Right
I could have all three on my lap at
once & could answer all questions &
talk to all three at the same time.
Write to me darling every day until
I say meet me. Affectionately

[transcription by John P. Mann IV]

MSS 7786-g

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