Sunday Morning Near Williamsport
July 12/63
Dear Father and Mother & Sister
I take this oppertunity to write
you a few lines to let you now ware I am at
and how I am I am not very well at presant
but I am getting a long better than I expected
I am tending to Head Quarters Hoarses
Major Hancocks Hoarses it is better than
being with the Regt I can ride some times that
helps me a long a good bit and then I am at
the reare of the battle field. Well I have
bin in Old Pennsleyvania once more any
how as fer as Gettesburge In that fight and
give the Jonney Rebs fits and after them hot
foot we have Ketch them a gain hear and
we expect another big battle hear we
through some shell into them last night
and moved them out of the woods hear
the darne Bugers get in the woods and their
clothes is so near like the Old stumps that
it is hard to tell them very far off for the
stumps and It makes it bad for us to follow them
[Page 2]
Well we give them harde rube at Gettesburge our Corpes
took a bout 2000 prisners their selfs it is hardes
battle that has bin fought yet I think in the
armey of the Potomic it has nock our Regt
all to peaces there is only 9 in my compney now
in the rigt except that there is 2 or 3 on provor
Garde there is 60 of our Rigt on that dutey and after
the Battle counted 48 men with the Luet and all of them
makes but 108 in all in our Rigt with 1 Major-1 Adjt
and 2 Captens in all of them that come out so that
has nock the Regt to peaces pritty fast out of 900
when we left Phila. and this fight I think it
will finesh them off and then their will be no
more of the 116 Regt for I think it will about wine
it up. Well I must tell a little about the march
it has bin a very hard one I come over the Battle feild
of Bull Run and Antetim and sean the boans
of the dead on the field that was not half bured
and 2 or 3 more battles fields that I donte now
their names now I come through Haymarket
that Genl Seagle had a brush and Burnte the town
all of the sesesh houses that was in it so it was
a hard looken pleace. Well we have bin in a great
meney towns since we have bin on this march
[Page 3]
and the people has use us very well we can esley
tell the secsh they will come fore a gard as soon
as we stope to garde their house such es them
have to lookout for the boys will go down on
him and take his chickens if they can get them
out side of the gards and if the Old fellow is not looking
the gards will drive them out side of his poste
some places they send the garde they youse them
firststrate and give them all they can eat they
are taken care fore such pursens as that some of
the pepol go in for maken money off us some places
we can bye a lofe of bread for 25cts and others
again have to give 50cts for it and some will give
it to you and others will make them mad if you offer
them money for it so you can see the differnce in
travelling along the road in differn states. We come
through Fredrick City it was a nice place a the
pepol use us first strate their every house had
a flage hung out of the window as we come
through it and as we come on the other side of
the town their we seen a spie hung on
a tree over in the they left him hang for
3 days before they took him down they skint the
tree of all of the barke was on it the Offerce
[Page 4]
got some off [????????????] chance for
me to get a peace for I had to holde the Hoarses for
them. Well it was hard to get a long on this
marche some times I would not have any thing
to eat for 2 or 3 days so I had to bye all that
I could eat so it has plead me out of money
now so I will have to look out for chanches
now I ges they will pay us off pritty soon
a gain and I would not care how soon they
would. Well I must stope writing fore this
is all of the paper I have got hear so good by for
a while and give my love to all of my friends
around their and excuse the bad writting for
I have to do it on my knee so good by
From your Son
Wm A Smith
Direct to
1st Division 2nd Corps
the army of Potomac Washington D.C
in care of Major Hancock

I receved your letter with them stamps in and
I would have wrote sooner if I had a chace so write
And love to you all
so good by

July 12, 1863


Co. D, 116th Pennsylvania Infantry
Residence (County): 
Philadelphia County, PA


Residence (County): 
Chester County, PA
Residence (County): 
Chester County, PA
Name Variant: 
Residence (County): 
Delaware County, PA


From Note: 


To State: 
To Municipality: 
To County: 

Transcription/Proofing Info

Bambi Whitaker
Transcription Date: 
October, 2012
M. Ellis
Proof Date: 
November, 2012

Get in touch

  • Department of History
    220 LeConte Hall, Baldwin Street
    University of Georgia
    Athens, GA 30602-1602
  • 706-542-2053
  • admin@ehistory.org

eHistory was founded at the University of Georgia in 2011 by historians Claudio Saunt and Stephen Berry

Learn More about eHistory