May the 1 1864
As it is a leapyear I have concluded to send you a few lines to let you know that I have not forgotten you. You may think this is an April fool but it is too late for them. I do not know whether you have ever seen me or not but I have seen you. You must not think hard of this maybe as it is. The day I saw you you looked like a rosebud in the morning of spring. I must come to a close by saying goodbye.
Your cousin until death. Who made Moses? Where was Peter when the candles went out? In what month do ladies talk the least? Why is a lover like a crow? Where did the witch of eden lie? What is that which is always brought to the table to eat but never eaten? Why is a wedding ring like eternity? If you give a kiss and take a kiss, what does it make? What burns to keep a secret? The heart. Why is a handsome woman like candy? Who do you love Willy maybe you do not know.
I will tell you if you do not know. Remember your home my Willy boy and the loved ones left behind. Remember the day you took my hand and freely spoke your mind? Come back with the laurel on your brow, won in a glorious fight and then you will see my Willy boy how soon I will be your Wife. You must sing this for me. As I am alone I must come to a close by saying good by. Your friend until death.
C.F.C. to W.D.Y.
Source: Christopher Watford, ed. The Civil War in North Carolina: Soldiers’ and Civilians’ Letters and Diaries, 1861-1865, Volume 1. Original in the Louis P. Sherman Collection, North Carolina State Archives.
** 1864 was a leap year and it was customary for ladies to be more forward in seeking romance, at least for a small time