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  • Item Category: Militaria & Weapons
  • Source: eBay
  • Sold Date: Apr 23, 2007
  • Channel: Auction House

's an old folded letter, the top half of the first page is dark and difficult to read. T's no envelope with it. Four pages of writing on a single sheet of folded paper.

The headline is Hugenot Springs, Va, May 13th, 1862, "Dear wife & Children" .

You can see clearly at the end, he signs it Wm F. Bennett. T were so many William Bennetts, it might take a good deal of research to determine which one wrote this letter. One way to go about it might be to search through the military records for a William F. Bennett who was at Hugenot Springs in 1862.

From what I could find online, t was a military hospital at Hugenot Springs.

As you can see from the first two paragraphs of abstracts, I was able to read some of the top half of the paper, and most of the second half. The second and third and fourth pages of writing are much clearer of stains and darkening and much easier to read.

From the mention of the late start of a Virginia 'Spring', it would seem he was from a state further south / southwest of Virginia.

Some abstracts:

[this first abstract is all I can read from the top half of the first page] "I avail myself of informing you that I rec'd your letter this morning .... that you rec'd the money that I sent you ..... I stay in the army ... the doctors say they don't ..."

[bottom half of first page] "they say that my disease .... they think that the sulphur water will do me good as I know of yet I hope these lines may come safe to hand & find you all well it is [???] that I want to see you as bad as you do want to see me. We have squally times about Richmond at this time, our forces has fell back from yorktown & norfolk & the yankees has got those places & we are looking for a [start of second page and easier to read writing] terrible bloody battle every day somew between Richmond & Yorktown."

"I think if we can get the vandals from the water we can whipp them. I do hope we whipp them badly when we do get a chance at them they are afraid to leave their gunboats but if they do we will whipp them good."

"I want to be with our boys but it is not worth while for me to go for I could not drill nor run for to get in position for you have to run all the [the line of writing is on the separated fold of the first page and difficult to read] ...."

"... the boys the best luck that they can have. I want them to win laurels for themselves & country, we have a great many sick soldiers in & around Richmond & a great many deaths. t is one died to day at this place he is from Louisana t has been a good many died at this place since I came this war has caused a many a heart to mourn I bleed for the loss of is friends [?] but they died gloriously for their country in a righteous & just cause ..."

"Spring is about one month later than it is t we have fine dry weather."

"we fare very bad light bread & dry [?] coffee of the poorest kind of beef, you will not be surprised if I go home to see me without any teeth for if you tasted the beef that we have to eat you would not wonder, so I must close my short letter tell Rachel Smith that I send my best respects to her ..."

And some more writing saying how much he misses them, etc.

Condition of the letter rates poor.

An interesting letter good for genealogy and history research. See my other auctions for similar items.

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