Johnsons Island, Ohio
March 25, 1864
Your kind favor of the 11th instant has been received and always glad to receive a letter from any person, as our correspondence is the only thing that seems to break the monotony of prison life, but the pleasure derived from you letter came from another soul, but it was not only from a kind and sympathetic friend, but the supposition that you have ceased to favor me with you interesting letters was truly dispelled. I had given it up that you and your noble husgand had forgotten me, or that something seriously had befallen you. I am very sorry that I did not receive Mr. Carpenters letter of which you speak, though it is not uncommon to lose letter here, they have such round about way to go before they are delivered to us. After this if you do not receive an answer to your letters immediately you may thereby know that all is not well – for I answer all letters immediately on reception.
I am sorry indeed, to hear that your Ma has been ill, but since its been her misfortune to be sick, I am glad to hear that she’s better and hope that she is restored. Prison life is as much as usual, no important changes. You see by the news of the day they are exchanging prisoners on a small scale – three or four lots of seven hundred or a thousand and at intervals of a week have already been exchanged – almost as good as no exchange at all, agreeable to that mode of exchange. I will be in prison yet for many a day and weeks before it comes my turn.
I received a letter a few days previous from Mrs. Mollie all the information it gave me was that grandfather’s family and family relations were all well. I am very fond of music, and under any other circumstances than the present, I would gladly accept your invitation to the entertainment. I have just turned into an author and have just finished writing a poem, “Tis Midnight Hours.” Unless I am sent away from here very soon, I intend writing a story or novel, “the Shautorn Bride.” ‘Tis all I can do to read, write, and think, and as I have no books worth reading, and as I have no books worth reading, and as thinking without action is pure pastime, I fall back upon my imaginary faculties like Byron of old. Respects to all, and please write soon.
Virgil S. Lusk
Source: Christopher Watford, ed. The Civil War in North Carolina: Soldiers’ and Civilians’ Letters and Diaries, 1861-1865, Volume 2. (Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company, Inc., 2003). Original in Virgil S. Lusk papers, North Carolina State Archives.