April 9th 1865
My Dear Father
I seize this opportunity to write to you, before starting
on the last great forward advancement of Sherman's Army. Orders were read
to us on Inspection this morning to be ready to move tomorrow morning,
in order to hunt up to destroy Johnston's Army while [ ? ] annihilates
the remnant of the once glorious Rebel Army of Virginia.
Every man is jubilant. I have been over to the Battery twice and am going again this afternoon to bid them all "Good Bye."
I got Dave's letter of March 3rd & your's of 27th is Tom.
I am sorry Tom is not here to take part in this final moment that is to crush the Rebellion & liberate our Brother.
I have mastered the "Manual of Arms" and am now drilling with the Co.
Have had visits from [ ? ], Raymond, George Ehringer and Ed O'Keefe. The latter will be in Clyman as this reaches you and will give you a call. He will be able to testify to any good health.
Use him well; don't advert to anything unpleasant to him. I am surprised to hear of Henry's enlistment. It speaks well for the north that our armies are being recruited to the [ ? ] honor of the Rebellion.
Now a word to Dave. I want him to support the separation
of the rifle before town, I solely wish I was up home for an hour.
Keep the gun clean & take it perfectly cool, but determined!
I am glad to hear that you make such good shots. The tell
us that Tom took a carbine with him for you, Bully!
Now the game will suffer when we all get out on a hunt.
Some think that William will get paroled or exchanged immediately.
I do not. May he have strength to stand and courage to meet all the misfortunes
and suffering that may be his lot untill we meet again.
I hope you are not too much troubled about it. Worse might have happened. The Battery men tell me that if any one can stand Rebel [ ? ], Willie can.
Coming round on the boat almost everything we had was stolen
or destroyed. My envelopes were all closed, paper damaged, even stamps
so soled as to be unfit for use. Comrades all the same, so I cannot borrow,
Please send a few stamps, Envelopes & a fine count. George Ehringer
gave me a few stamps.
Preferably the last mail starts from here in a few minutes. Give my love to all & have a few for me untill you hear again
Your Loving Son