Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Civil War Soldier's letter from R.F Edwards

A fantastic 1862 Civil War Soldier's letter from R.F Edwards is up for sale on Ebay. Item number:280399142907

The full text of the Letter reads as follows:
“Battlefield near Sharpsburg Sep. 24th Dear Parents, Again I write to you "Le mois de Septembre touche a sa fin." - The month of September touches it's end - as Sue beautifully says in his "Juif Errant". All things herald the coming decay. The cornfields are withered stalks - the distant breath of winter reaches us; involuntarily we are shivering here. The leaves show a faint change - the orchards groan under their heavy burden of ruddy apples - The heat of summer has departed - we are invigorated by the cooling winds that tell us of the North - all things tell of approaching winter. We are poorly prepared for the coming season. The regiment is nearly bare of shoes and underclothing - totally destitute of blankets and tents - and the poor fellows have little prospect of bettering their condition before the cold weather is upon them in its rigours. The men are covered with vermin - and in a most pitiable condition. But our Flag is full of bullet holes - the smoke of Battle has soiled its snow white and crimson folds - but letters of gold will ere we return. Second. The actions of Thorofare Gap - Bull Run - East Mountain and Sharpsburg - through which the gallant old 90th has passed triumphantly and won golden opinions from all by its spartan courage. I am proud of my Regt. - the National Guard - both as the 19th - and as the 90th. I wish that I had been in the Sharpsburg affair - for there will never in this war be another like it. Still I have seen all the horrors without positively being in the action. The dead and dying. Long lanes of dead fallen where they stood marked the Rebel lines of battle. All positions - some kneeling - others on their hand and knees - some peacefully lying there on that bloody field as if on some rose strewn couch. We still remain at this stupid place - no signs of the enemy - the daily thunder of cannon that for the past two weeks has been a familiar sound has ceased and all is quiet. We will move shortly - it is expected - to Harper's Ferry. I wish they would leave us there all winter - but time will show. There were two things I neglected to ask you to send in my last. One is very wicked I know but can't help it, must ask. 1. Knife spoon and fork - my other one was stolen long since 2. Penknife 3. !!!! (Just a small -ee) box of cigars Please pay for all these things out of my money if there is any left. And for mercy's sake do send me just a little change in a letter - but for goodness' sake don't Register it. I never can get it without a great deal of trouble when you do. It's just as safe the other way - (in small sums). I am still pretty busy - everything goes on smoothly and I am quite satisfied with my position - there is nothing more of interest to relate so I will close - My love to Aunt and Lizzie - and to the Ladies. Regards to all inquiring - write soon and direct as usual to Your affectionate Son R.F. Edwards”

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