Archive for the ‘Soldier life’ Category

Kinston, NC

November the 2 1864

My Deir Wife and children

I seate my self this morning with a troub beld harte and a de strest mind to try to rite a few lines to let you no that I hiered my sentens red yesterday and hit was very Bad. I am very sory to let you no all read dy that I hafte to bee shot the 9 of this month. I am sory to in form you that I hav but 7 dayes to live but I hope and trust in god when thay have slane my body that god will take my sole to este whier I will meete my little babe that is gon be fore. My dier wife I think I could die better sadesfide if I could see you and the children one more time on erth and talk wih you but my time is so short I done exspct to ever see you and my dier lile dchildren eny more on erth.

I can in form you that I receved 2 leters for you yesterday witch I red with plesur witch you giv me some sadesfaction to heir that you was all well and doing well.  I receved the close that you sent to m by lt smith. I exspect that will be my bearying close. I receved a canteen of brandy also but am in too mutch truble to drink. My dier wife I wante you to come to see mee if you can gi abner brooks to come with you if can my dayes be perlonged. My dier wife if I see you no more on erth donte grieve for mee nether lamente nor morne mee. I hope I shal with my Jesus bee while you ar left a lon. I pray that god will be with you and helpe you rase your children up in the noledge of th truth and the lorde and savior Jesus christe.

A woird to my children witch is in my harte in nature seem to bind. James I wonted you to bee a good boy and obey your mother. Also sissy you muste bee a smarte little girl and bee good to the babey and call to Jobey. I hope that god will bee with you all so far well children you cane se you papy no more on erth.

My dier wife thes times has ben sweet.  I have spent with you but no I muste depart from you and nevr more return but let this no griv your hart. I pray that the lorde will bee with you and helpe you out in all your troubles and trile hier bee low. So far well dier wife

J.R. Redmond condem to die


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 the Military Collection, North Carolina State Archives, Raleigh.

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Raleigh Oct 22nd 1864

Dearest Will

Yours from City Point reached me safely, although that from Bermuda Hundreds did not come to hand. We all rejoiced over it & praised & blessed God for your safety. He has mercifully preserved you through so many dangers, devote yourself to His service at all times & in all places. Your Father is at his country home. I have appointed no time for leaving for I am enjoying myself & I have gained 3 & 1/2  lbs. by weight. The Genl. cannot put his foot to the floor yet & is a great sufferer at times. He now desires company & we all read aloud to him by turns. Yr sister is very kind in reading to him. Mr Thos Branch has rented Dr. Richard Haywood’s house & is moving in. Mr. Henry Brian has rented the one your Uncle occupies & yr Uncle has determined to return to the country. It is his fault for he would not secure it when it was offered to him. Old Mr. Sheppard has died recently & also Judge Donnell. Mary Mason is to assist us in making a burl frame for yr portrait. It is a great comfort to me to look at it. The Devereux are well. Annie is with us very often. George is really gaining strength at last. The others well. I sent up letters to yr Father to gladden his heart. He missed you sadly. All send heart felt love. Confer with my friends if possible & let me know who are still living if you can. Would that I could write more.

Most affectionately & devotedly

yr Mother.


Source:  W.H.C. Burgwyn Papers, State Archives of North Carolina and found on www.ncecho.org

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Old Capital Prison

Washington City D. C.

Oct. 14th/64

My dear Father

I received a very kind & affectionate letter from Uncle David yesterday enclosing me $100.00 from him & offering more as Mr Dehon was not in the City. He also wrote desiring me to come and stay with him as a prisoner if possible; he said he had received a letter from Mother which was “as a star in a cloudy night” & the only letter received from any of the family in over three years. he himself is in very feeble health & walks with difficulty with the help of a stick but all of his family are well. Mr Dehon is also in very bad health & consequently spends but little of his time in Boston but is expected there every day. Uncle David’s address in No 40 State St Boston Mass.

Mr Sumner he writes has been dead about three years. With the help of the $100.00 I will get along very well. I wrote asking Mr Dehon to get me a pr of pants jacket & vest of grey cloth which will make me quite comfortable. The only drawback or want experienced is books but I think I may buy some. I have sent for Shakespears works pocket edition.  I am in hopes of hearing at any day from home. Never forget to write particularly how is the health of those at home & the Devereux family.  I am in very good health & only very anxious to get exchanged. Write frequently and address your letter to Capt W. H. Hatch Asst Agent of Exchange War Department Richmond Va or to Col Ould & they will be sent here. Write if my horses trunks & Pompey got home safely. My best love to all dear Father.

Your most affet Son

  1. H. S. Burgwyn Capt & A.A. Genls

Clingman’s Brigade


Source: WHS Burgwyn Papers, State Archives of North Carolina as found on www.ncecho.org

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Oct 11.1864

Capt W. H. S. Burgwyn

A.A.G. Genl  Clingman’s Brigade

Old Capitol Prison

Washington, D.C.

My dear nephew

Last evening I received yours of 6th inst informing me of your captivity & destitute condition. At the earliest moment this morning I sought Mr. Debow, who is absent. I am sorry I cannot come to you in person, but I am a cripple, barely able to totter about with help of a stick. I however enclose five twenty dollar U S treasury notes, & send them by what I believe to be a safe & speedy conveyance, hoping they may ameliorate your condition till you can hear from Mr. Debow. You do not say that you are hurt & I trust therefore that you are uninjured. Mr. Debow is expected home daily, and as soon as he arrives I will inform him of your situation. His health is not good & he is absent a great deal on that account.

I suppose it cannot be contraband to add that my family are well & all desire the kindest remembrance to you. Your namesake on the hill has been dead nearly three years. We had a letter from your mother a few weeks since the first for three or more years. It came by permission of the authorities & was like a star in a cloudy night.

Write me when you can, and let me know if I can do any thing to render your condition more comfortable. If the thing is possible we should like to have you here, as prisoner, if on no better terms. What do you say.

My Post Office address is Boston, No. 40 State St. & I am

Afftely yours

  1. J. Greenough

P.S. Advise me if the money comes to hand & if you want more


Source: WHS Burgwyn Papers, State Archives of North Carolina as found on www.ncecho.org


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Telegram to Col. H.K. Burgwyn: 
October 2, 1864
Your son Capt Burgwyn was captured by the Enemy sept 30th near Chaffins Bluff. 
A. M. Erwing Maj
Telegram sent to Raleigh from Petersburg.  North Carolina State Archives, WHS Burgwyn Papers.

Telegram sent to Raleigh from Petersburg. North Carolina State Archives, WHS Burgwyn Papers.

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Winchester fight

Tuesday the 20th [1864]    Strasburg

Yesterday our force was defeated in a general fight with the enemy. My division lost two thirds of its total number. The Legion lost 75. Lieutenants Welch and Ashley are killed. Captain McKinney and Capt Singleton, Lts. Young, Jule and George are all captured. There was a stampede of wagons at night. wE travelled all night. The troops are now in line at the breastworks.


*Thomas’ Legion: Made up mostly of men from the mountains of North Carolina, including a good number of Cherokee. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas’_Legion

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). Diary of Major William Stringfield, WW Stringfield Papers, North Carolina State Archives.

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September 6, 1864

The 2d day this is and our rations gets no better we get half a loaf of bread a day a small slice of Pork or Beef or Sault Beef for Breakfast for Dinner a cup of Been Soup and Supper we get non Mr. A. Morgan of South Carolina has a vacon Cook House which he has bin teaching School in every Sunday and has prayers evry morning befour school we have a Preacher to evry Division in the Camp. Mr. Carrol preaches to our Divi which is the 8th. This is the 5th day of the month and we are going to have Been Soup with onions in it to day for dinner we will have Potatoes and Onions boath tomorrow the Dr had them sent in here for rebs to see if they would not stop Scirvy My health is very good to day which is the 6th of Sept. 64. But I cannot tell how long it will remain so for it is a raining and very coal to day An I have not go eney shoes.



Source: Christopher Watford, ed. The Civil War in North Carolina: Soldiers’ and Civilians’ Letters and Diaries, 1861-1865, Volume 1. Diary of Bartlett Yancey Malone, microfilm in the Southern Historical Collection, UNC-Chapel Hill

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