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November 12, 1864

Petersburg Nov. 12th 1864

 

My Own Darling Wife

I have delayed writing longer than usual in the hope that I would be able to get a short leave to visit you but after waiting a week my application came down disapproved for the present. I only asked for 5 days, but Genl Lee thought it imprudent to allow me that at this time. I was fearful it would be so, yet was much disappointed when I found that I could not go.

We occupy pretty nearly the same position as when you left except our lines are more extended & I shall send for you as soon as I feel that we are permanent. To send before that would or might subject you to a great inconvenience. You must therefore be patient as I shall certainly send the very first moment I deem it safe. The weather is getting quite cold & we get orders today to find winter quarters & I shall start out today to find my winter quarters.

You must make Stephen put up some large boxes or barrels of sweet & Irish potatoes & peas & whatever else he has. We shall need them as I fear provisions will be very scarce here this winter. Make him have those things ready by the time you start. In my next letter I hope to be able to tell you to come on. Dick will send for his wife & you will be together.

I look for Effie’s money today from Richmond and will send it to her the first opportunity. The amount will be about $14.00. She can draw the balance when she needs. I would advise her to do whatever the Dr. thought ought to be done for Benney but I fear it will not be in my favor to go with her to Richmond.

Lincoln is certainly elected and there is non telling when the war will end. We must first determine to fight it out and look for the end when it comes. I saw Genl Lee yesterday and he was in fine spirits and more dispensed to joke that I ever saw him. My good lady friend, God bless her, Mrs. Waddell told me the other day that she prayed that I might not get hurt, but if I did, I must not go to a hospital but come to her home.

Tell Pa when he comes down that I have a lot of 30 or 430 logs all piled up out of which he can make himself a nice selection. I didn’t go through the trouble of gathering them up but found them placed away in an old camp by some soldiers. He must bring you down, I am anxious to see you and hope to see them all this winter. Are they fixing up a box for my Brig? They ought to send two or three boxes & no box must weigh over 100 pounds and should be filled with tobacco. They ought to be plainly marked post as this letter is addressed.

It look his morning as if it would snow & I hope roads will still be in a condition to stop all enemy movements here. Give my best love to all & be ready at any time when I shall send for you. Ask Pa if I will have any money left after paying my debts. I shall need some this winter if I can get it in addition to my wages. Farewell my darling wife, hoping that I will see you soon & write my correct prayer that our God will shield and bless you.

I am ever your devoted husband,

AM Scales

PS I have first learned that Genl Wilcox will leave the division this winter & that Genl Custis Lee will probably be our Maj Genl

 

 

 

Source: Christopher Watford, ed. The Civil War in North Carolina: Soldiers’ and Civilians’ Letters and Diaries, 1861-1865, Volume 1. Original in the AM Scales Collection, State Archives of North Carolina

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Fort Holmes

August 9th 1864

Dear Wife

Having an opportunity to send a letter by Mr B F Havens to Washington, I avail myself of the chance of writing you a short letter to let you know that I am quite well.  I have not had a letter from you now in a fortnight, and am uneasy for fear you are sick which may the Lord protect you from. JW Clayton arrived back here yesterday and by him I learned that your family were quite sickly. I hope ere this they are getting better. I feel very uneasy when I hear that any of our loved ones are sick and much worse so when I hear you are sick yourself.  We have a good deal of sickness in garrison now and some of the cases are quite stubborn. Hardenbergh is verry unwell indeed and has been so now for 2 months or more. There is not much news stirring here now. We got the news of Genl Lees blowing up a parcel of Yankees in one of their mines before Petersburgh yesterday and also that the Yankees had blowed some of our men in the same way. There is nothing new from Georgia just now. One piece of good news I have to tell you of that took place here on Sunday night. One of the Yankee blockaders while running close to the inlet got aground and they worked all night nearly trying to get her off but finding that day would catch them right under our guns they set her on fire and left her . She burned to the waters edge and then we boarded her in boats and got a good deal of plunder. This morning we got off one of her guns a beautiful brass 12 pounder Dahlgreen gun and a parcel of shells also. There is still another 25 lb gun on board which we will try to get. She is about mille off right in front of Fort Holmes and on the outer reef. We will save a good many useful things off of her. She has a fine engine but I fear we cannot save it as it is so rough where she lays. Several blockade runners have come in with yellow fever on them but it has not been communicated to land as no one is allowed to go on board except the physician and no one is allowed to go on shore from there. I hope John Thomas carried your cotton to Washington with him. He said he would if it had come to with him and let you know about its being there so you can send for it. I hope one or the other of them will carry it down for you. Oh! How I wish I could be with you now if only for one hour just to see you and know for myself how you are, but love it cannot be so now but if we live until another year this time I hope and fully believe I shall be with you. Have all the cider made you can and have some of it made into brandy. Have some wine made too dear if nothing happens to the grapes. Put 1/5 brandy to the grape juice. I hard by John that your crop at South Creek is quite likely. Give my best respects to all the negroes and my love to Aunts Rose and Charity. Mars is very well indeed. Give my warmest paternal love to all our dear ones. Tell Josephus and Vene to write to me.

 

Source: William Henry Tripp and Araminta Guilford Tripp Papers, Southern Historical Collection, UNC Chapel Hill. http://www2.lib.unc.edu/mss/inv/t/Tripp,William_Henry_and_Araminta_Guilford.html#folder_7#2

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Hand Towel

Hand towel made by Adeline Loftin of Denton, NC in 1863. NC Museum of History.

Hand towel made by Adeline Loftin of Denton, NC in 1863. NC Museum of History.

Lace detail, hand towel made by Adeline Loftin of Denton, NC in 1863. NC Museum of History.

Lace detail, hand towel made by Adeline Loftin of Denton, NC in 1863. NC Museum of History.

White hand towel with crocheted lace.  Family tradition said that the towel was made by Adeline Loftin of Denton, NC in 1863.  Ms. Loftin grew the flax, spun the yarn, wove the fabric, and crocheted the lace.

 

Source: Museum of History Collection, accession number 2005.170.1

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Wednesday 10th August 1864

Finished Pinck’s shirt today & cut Zona & Gus a bonnet. Matt helped me. We did not get them done. No news of importance. I hope Mr. Henry will not have to go out in the militia. I do wish this cruel war was over. The children learn very fast. Zona can read & spell in three letters. Gus & Willie go to play while the children are reciting.

Source: Diary of Cornelia Henry in Fear in North Carolina: The Civil War Journal and Letters of the Henry Family. Clinard, Karen L. and Russell, Richard, eds. (Asheville, NC: Reminiscing Books, 2008).

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June the 16 1864

My Dear husband

Tracing of a newborn's hand for her soldier father, June 1864. Poteet-Dickson Letters, North Carolina State Archives.

“The size of the baby’s hand.”  Tracing of a newborn’s hand for her soldier father, June 1864. Poteet-Dickson Letters, North Carolina State Archives.

I seat My self this evening  to write you a few lines to let you know how we are Some of us is not well me and Thomas Francis Emer Susannah Amy Jane has the bowell complaint I aint Much sick but I do hope these few  lines May Reach your kind hands and find you in good health  My corn looks very well Thomas will finish plowing it the second time today we hav this side the Creek to hoe My Neighbours says that if nothing happens I will Make a heap of Corn the sweet potatoes is very prety and the  irish potatoes is the pretyest I ever seen I hav a mess today I wish you  was hear to eat some with me I would be so glad I would not know how to behave I hav to live very hard I haint nothing Much to eat but bread  and not Much of that if you was hear I would not hav to live so hard nor I woudent hav to work when I was not able My baby will be 4 weeks old Saturday Night she was born the 21 of May write to Me what to name her I had the best time I ever had and I hav bin the stoutest ever sens I  haint lay in bed in day time in two Weeks today I thank the Lord that he has answerd your prayers and mine beyon what I could expected but he has all power I feel very thankfull that it is as well with you as what it is I hope that God will  bless us to be spared to rais our children your Mother is well her and Jemima Come to see me yesterday Grason Dickson run away and got to Camp Vance and had to go back I dont want you to vote for vance vote for Holden vance is to be in Marion next Monday to speak  James Neal has bought 500 bushels of corn for this County but it haint  come yet and he says that when they eat it they may die and go to hell  Louis Walker and Tery Walker is at home wounded your Mother says tell you  howdy for her and the children sends you howdy and tell you that they hav to  work very hard and wishes you was hear to help them [illeg] this evening I would like to hear from you to know if you hav got hurt I am very uneasy about you  I do hope and pray that God will shield you from all harm and danger and  spar your life to come home to me and your little children I know that you want to see your sweet little baby I would be very glad to see you if I could but I cant nor I dont know  whether I ever will or not God knows I dont you dont know what a hard  time I hav I am ruined if you dont never come home I cant work another year as hard as I hav this if the children was not as good as they are I dont know what I would do the Lord has blessed us and I hope he will continue to bless us while we are separated and bring us together agin in this life pray for us my Dear that we dont perish thread is 100 dollars Cotten is two dollars apound I dont know what I am to do but I will do the best I can and trust in God for help all of our help comes from him  write to me soon wen I can hear from you and hear that you are well it dos me  a heap of good May the lord bless and save you is the prayer of your desolate Wife

farwell my Dear husband

M. A. E. Poteet to her loving husband F. M. Poteet

God bless and save you
Source: Poteet-Dickson Letters, North Carolina State Archives, Raleigh, NC. As found on www.ncecho.org

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Sunday 5th June 1864

Cloudy this morning but little rain. Matt & Zona to church to the Academy. Mr. Reynolds preached. They have just got back. Mr. Henry & I & the children, Zona & Willie, will go to the Murray place this evening. I attended to Gus this morning & Rose went to Church. He is very little trouble but a great deal of pleasure to attend my children. I am weaning him. He sucked Thursday morning & then not till Saturday morning. I don’t think I will let him suck any more. I do feel so sorry for him when he begs to suck. I hate to turn away & try to amuse him as he soon forgets it & goes to play. He is no trouble at night as he has not sucked any at night for a month. This has been a very wet Spring. Farmers are all behind with their work. I hear the clover & grass seed sown this Spring are doing very well and the clover in the Hotel garden is very nice and is the only feed for our work stock as all the grain is given to the needy for bread. The need of grain is very great and it will be very hard for all to get bread this season. We went to the Murray place, had a pleasant walk. It was rather warm going. We came back & got some strawberries this side of the spring. Nearly sundown when we got back. Two men stay here tonight. Old Draper is one. He is the same man that was here about a month ago. Capt. Parker robbed him & the man that is with him. Rained some this evening.

 

Source: Diary of Cornelia Henry in Fear in North Carolina: The Civil War Journal and Letters of the Henry Family. Clinard, Karen L. and Russell, Richard, eds. (Asheville, NC: Reminiscing Books, 2008).

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A sad occurrence

Some days ago, Mr. James Little, an estimable citizen of this county, while laboring under a temporary aberration of mind, threw himself into a well upon his farm and was drowned. Mr. Little was about 65 years of age. It is thought that the distressed condition of the country was the cause of his mental derangement. All of his sons are in the army, one of whom has been very badly wounded –s o much so, that he is disabled for life. Tarboro Southerner

 

Source: Fayetteville Observer, May 16, 1864, as found on www.ncecho.org.

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