Interior view of Rebel fort in front of Petersburg works, manned by Cowan’s Independent battery, 1st N.Y., 24th June, 1864 – Library of Congress
When we last checked in with W.C. Penland there was sickness in the camp and he was needing a coat.
Zollicofer Sulivan County East Tenn
March 18th 1863
I embrace the present opportunity to write you a few lines to let you know that I am well hoping that these few lines will find you and all of the friends well and enjoying the same blessing we are stationed about one half of a mile from Zollicoffer Bridge We have to guard there all of the time I was there a day and night day before yesterday the health of our company is good at the present there is no new cases of sickness at the present James Crawford is on the mend he is stouter than he as been since he came from home I think he will get well now soon he is in better spirits than he has been the cars have to cross the new Bridge today I do not know whether they will or not they have only been three weeks a making the Bridge I do think that they have made good progress there has been a good many Yankee prisoners passed up the road since we come here that were taken between Murforsoboro and Nashville Tenn I got a letter from Aunt Margaret Mantooth a few days ago she was well when she wrote the letter I also got a letter from Mr. Kenedy he is well I think that we will be stationed here for some time now but I do not know how long I have heard that Capt M N W Moores company is to be here in a few days I do not know when We are not getting enough of feed for our horses but I think that we will soon When they get regulated about transportation on the railroad we get a plenty to eat ourselves of meat and bread we are not a drawing any sugar and rice at the present John Sherman has gone to Jonesboro to forward Commissaries he is well we are a looking for some of our men in now ever day it may be that there will be another detail in there in a few days but I do not know it for certain I am not in the detail now it is made out and sent up for approval I do not know whether it will be approved or not if it is they will be at home by the first of April I can inform you that James Mathison has got into camp he came up on the last nights train he has had a considerable ride on the cars he went from Atlanta to Chatanooga and then to Knoxville and on here Big Jason Ledford has stared to go home once lately and met Mc Ledford and he told him about the Cavalry being in that part of the country and he came back I wrote that Uncle Wyly was gone home it is a mistake he started and did not get his papers fixed right and he had to come back I do not know whether he will go home or not I wrote to mother that I wanted her to send me a coat I still want her to have it made and send it to me the first chance for my coat is worn out
I must So no more at present but remains your son as ever
Direct your letters to Zellicoffer Sulivan County East Tenn C B 65th N C Regt
There seems to be a lot of confusion thrown into the mix of soldiers arriving and leaving. W.C. sounds like he is in better spirits himself-I bet getting the 2 letters he mentioned caused the improvement.
2 other things I found interesting:
*James Crawford is on the mend I still hear folks talking about someone being on the mend from a bad accident or illness-love that the word usage from W.C.’s time is still around.
*I can inform you that James Mathison has got into camp he came up on the last nights train he has had a considerable ride on the cars he went from Atlanta to Chatanooga and then to Knoxville and on here I imagine in that day and time taking a journey of that length by train would have made James Mathison feel as though he had been around the world and back.
Was there something in this letter that caught your eye?