Camp near Fredericksburg
April the 7 1863 [April is a mistake. The month is May]
Dear Pappy Ma and Mit
I received your letter
the other day and was more than
glad to heare that you all was well
and that Pappy had got well enoughf
to walk about well I will tell
you that I have just returned
from the battle [1] field after
seven days hard fighting and
to day makes the ninth day
Since wee have left camp and
wee sufferd A great deal during
the time but thank god that
I came out Safte and unhurt
I will commence at the first
day wee left camp witch was
yesterday was A weeak ago they
yankes Suckceeded in crossing the river
at Fredericksburg while the
morning was foggy they killd
and capsuerd very near all of
[page 2]
our Pickets wee left in A
great hurry to meet them wee
got hare and the Sharp
shooters was orded to the front
and wee went and met the invader
and wee keped them back for two
days and then wee left and went
to the united states ford. whare
the yankes was in great number
this was on friday morning and
when wee got thare wee sharp shooters
ware orded to the front so wee deploid
out and wee soon got in shooting
distance and wee let them have it
as fast as wee could load and shoot
but soon wee came in contack
with A line of battle but wee still
pust forward and made them run
like sheep all day long without eny
help atall except sharp shooters the
night came on and I took me A
knapsack and Blanket and wee came
back to the Regt and staid all night
[page 3]
after traveling for some time
and Saturday morning wee went
in front again and wee commenced
fighting and after about 2 hours
fighting wee went back to the rear
and rested and very soon wee
ware orded to go to proteck the
wagon train for the yankes had
taken part of it so wee went and
got lost and got in amongst
the yankes and wee had to support
A battery and wee ware orded to
retreat and if wee had to ove staid
thare 15 minets wee would have
ben taken Prisioners but wee got
out safte and got back to the
brigade in the night but I did
not find but three or four of our bags at campt
thare they had run the yankes
about 3 miles and on sunday morning
the fight opend again wee charged
the yankes out ove thare breast works
[page 4]
it was the hardest battle that
has ever ben fought I reckend
it is said to be the hardest by
the head men I do not know
the loss on ther side but the
loss on both sides was great and
awful to look at I am sorry to tell
you that Uncle James Stone is missing
he is taken Prisioner or kild and
A good meny others with him Maj [2]
Blacknall is taken ro [3] he cant be
hurd from and George Cheatham [4] to
I hardly know who was kild and
wounded Lieut Overton [5] was mortly
wounded and to day I heard he was
ded Lieut Breedlove [6] was wounded and
Robbert Champien and Bil Cheatham [7]
and Ben Dun [8] them is all that I
know ove and I tell you that wee
whiped them good and gained A glorious
victory night before last they crossed
the river and yesterday morning I
followard them to the river and took
several Prisioners wee have taken A
good meny Prisioners and several big
oficiers and wee kild one Maj General
and wounded old Hooker and made
his men travel back faster than
they come and I hope that they
will never come again
[page 5]
know Iwill tell you that
wee made the yankes loose
very near every thing they had
I got as meny things as I wanted
I got A potifolio and some Paper this
is some of it and A good oil cloth
and A good Pare of shoes I will
close but I could write a good deal
more about this horrid thing but
I pray that this may be the last
battle that may be fought on the
sothern soil I will tell you that
this fight was the hottiest place
that I ever got in the yankes
cross fierd on me 3 diferant ways
but thank god that I did not
get hurt and Rial [9] went through
and come out Safte know I
must come to A close tell all
of my kindred that I sends
my best Respects to them all
and Mr Ellingtons family tell
Aunt mary about uncle James
[page 6]
for her not to be uneasy
about him for I recken he
is taken Prisioner So I hope
to hear from you all soon
so nothing more but remaining
your affectionate Son and Brother
J, F,, Coghill

  1. Battle of Chancellorsville
  2. Maj., later Col., Charles C. Blacknall
  3. ro = or?
  4. Pvt. George Cheatham of Co. G
  5. Lt. W. F. Overton of Co. G
  6. Lt., later Capt., James Breedlove of Co. G
  7. Cpl. Robert T. Champion and Pvt. William Cheatham
  8. Pvt. B. A Dunn of Co. G
  9. Pvt. J. R. Stewart of Co. G
April 7, 1863


Company G, 23rd NC Infantry
Private to Corporal


Joseph W. Coghill's father
Jonathan Fuller Coghill's Sister
Name Variant: 


From State: 
From Municipality: 


To State: 
North Carolina
To County: 

Transcription/Proofing Info

Heather Cook
Transcription Date: 
May, 2011
Michael Ellis
Proof Date: 
June, 2011

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