Brandy Station Va Dec 8th 1863
Dear Sister P. yours of the 25th came to hand in due time
and found me alive and well, but of course rather tired as we
had just returned from Meeds grand recornansence
acrost the raperdan We broke camp thanks giving day
(after duly advertising in the washington papers,
and prepared to go and pay a visit to the
johny Greys We crosed the raperdan on a pontoon
Bridge and went about one mile and camped
for the night with out seeing anything of our
friends The next morning we started at early dawn and
advanced about two miles when we halted untill now
when we went out of the woods into an open field
and halted and lisent to the musketry untill
about four PM When we where ordered to the
front at double quick When we arived we saw
the third division of our Corps flying from the field
and their Genral Weeping over his disgracefull defeat
But our Genral apeard much diferent I never saw him
look half so well before I can not discribe him only he wears
his hat as Grandfather Purington used to and as he
drew his soard and rose up in his sadle he looked
like the picture of a herow our division is the 1st
and is call the old Kearny division and they
expect to do more than others We went in with
a yell and did not come out untill we had distrib
uted forty rounds of cartages to the rebs when we
retired to get more after wich we went to the
front and as it was now dark there was no
more fighting that night
[1] sen[d] some Pepper
[page 2]
That night night it came my turn to go on picket in front
of the line and when there I was Detailed with others
to go out in front of the picket as scouts to see
what we could see we went to an old plantation
and endevering to find some chickens we ran into
some joney Greys secreted in the hay mow, they
said that they had hid away so that they
might be taken prisoners in a store rom we found
a lot of flour potatoes and cabage wich we
confiscated for our own use we also captured
one pig and hearing a noise in a building
that was locked I broke in the door thinking I
might find a johny Grey but judge of my surprise
when there came toward me a huge bull Dog I prepared
to put My Bayonet through him when I thought
he acted very harmles and the felow actuly came up
to me and waged his tail and much as to say you
and I are friends We took our pig and vegetables
and went back to the picket line where I got
censured by our knockneed picket ofiser and
told us if we caryed our flour to the regiment
in the Barel he would dump it into the Brooke
Says I you can dump it Not an
other word say he out of your head I replied that
I had given him no sause Not another word
out of you or I will put you under arest
By this time I got a little on the fighting trim and
I merly told to arest and be
Says he consider yourself under arrest
[2] I send George a bone soard made on the last Battle field
weron the raperdan
[page 3]
The money I sent mother was put into a letter on or about the 16th of
Febuary and it was a 20$ bill I intend to send more sun if I have good luck
Now when a private is arested his gun is taken from
him and he is plased under guard but in this
instance I was treated as they treat ofisers of
rank Wich made the thing very rediculus
I was talking and saying we aught to have as many
pigs as we got prisoners and pleeing my own case
rather cheeky for a private when he came along and
ordered me to report to my company wich I done
and a great favour he done me as the picket
was not drawn in untill we got many miles
away I sent the Boys down and they secured most
of the flour and all of the vegatables and I rather
guess the sholder strap gentleman has not said
any more about the affair than I have
The next day we moved down the river and
prepared to make a charge upon the whole length
of the enemys line but it was given up after
our Bayonets where fixed, we should have had
to cros a big marsh where the water would
be up to our knees when up a long hill
covered with the enemys rifle pits exposed
the whole time to grape and canister and
the enemys bulets If the thing had ben atempted
we proberly should have taken it but we
should lost half our men and the place
gained would ben of no imortance to us
After laying out in the cold wind upon
the frosty ground one or two nights we
started on one grand skedadle back
[page 4]
We started at dark and Double quicked over a
road Ploud up by heavy artilery then froze by the
cold weather all night and the next morning
found the sun Bright before we got back
acrost the river we halted and got some Break
fast then started for this place we marched untill
night then slept 3 hours then arose and came
in strageling over a mudy road about as
demoralised set of Bipeds as was ever seen
We lost one man in our company 2 wounded slightly Uriah Cobb
received a buck shot in his hand but will soon
be on duty (Such is war) I want a “box” sent
to me with the folowing articals 1 pale holding
three quarts made of heavy tin with ears riveted
on and a stout pale and not have the pale
very deep, the paile I want filled with butter
prety well salted one fry pan or spider made
out of heavy tin or lite sheet iron about as
big as a table plate wit[h] handle about ten
inches long I want the handle riveted on
and the spider made without sodering
that is the edges raised out of while tin and
about one inch deep then I want a little axe
that will weigh 1½ or 2 pounds without a handle
the rest of the Box can be filled with dried aples
salt fish or smoked halibut but put in
nothing that will mould or rot the Box need not
be over one foot square Mark the box plaine M.P. Larry
Company H 17th Maine regiment Washington DC”
and send by Express and you proberly will have to pay
[3] the express bill and I will see that you are paid for all trouble and expence M.P.L.
[4] have a cover to the pale fiting snug

  1. Written on right margin
  2. Written on right margin
  3. Written on right margin
  4. Written on left margin
December 8, 1863


Co. H, 17th Maine Infantry
Residence (County): 
Cumberland County, ME


Residence (County): 
Cumberland County, ME


From State: 
From Municipality: 


To State: 
To County: 

Transcription/Proofing Info

Kelly Baker
Transcription Date: 
April, 2015
M. Ellis
Proof Date: 
May, 2016

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