Letter from Mar. 25, 1865

Roland G.Smith to Cousin Nettie

  • Full Title

    Roland G.Smith to Cousin Nettie

  • Description

    Roland G. Smith, a resident of Burlington, CT, served in the 12th Connecticut Regiment during the Civil War. Over the course of the spring of 1865, Roland wrote several letters to his cousin Nettie from Savannah, Georgia and Summit Point, Virginia. Smith mentions the impact of Lincoln's death on the camp and general public.

  • Transcription

    [Page 1]
    Summit Point V.A.
    April 17th 1865

    Dear Cousin I received your kind letter the 14th and was glad to here from you once more and glad to here that you was well. there has been a good deal of exciting news since I wrote to you before and I have been in quite a martch to of about 80 miles. I sopose you don’t think 80 miles is very far but if you should come to walk it with a Gun and equipment to carry and a napsack on your back you would think it was a long walk. we left here the 4th went up the Valley about 40 miles to stop Genl. Lee from coming down the Valley case he should try to with what troop had left after leaving Richmond but after we

    [Page 2]
    Had got up the Valley about 40 miles we heard that Lee had surrendered to Grant with his whol Army so we turned back and are now at Summit Point again but I think we will move from here again soon but do not know. from the 2nd of this month up to the evening of the 19th we had Glorious news but the evening of the 14th we had very sad news you know what I mean of corse for you must of heard it and every body els in the United States. the murder of our President and Secretary Seward and Son seriously wounded we have not got the particulars of the news yet here but will tonight when the papers come I sopose you know more about it than I do, but I tell you it makes for sad times here all the Bands playing solemn airs and the flags at half mast and so I hope the scoundrels that done it will be cached and hanged at the first Tree they come too …

    I have cached an awful cold and it has settled in to my eyes. and my right eye is swelled so I can not see out of it and I haf to keep it done up so you see I have not got but one eye to see to write with and that one is sore and it makes it ache to write so I guess this wont be a very long letter and it is wrotd so poor I guess you wont care but a short is better than none perhaps I am in hopes this war will soon be over so I can come and see you instead of having to write so much I think I shall be to home by fall if I live until that time every thing looks favorable now I think for a speedy Peace and I guess every body is longing to see it Sitzens as well as Soldiers…

    I dont feel so as I could write much more this time pleas write to me after give me best respects to Uncle Chauncy and Aunt Caroline and Frankie and I send my best. Love to you so good bye for this time this from your Affectionate
    Cousin
    Roland G Smith
    PS) pleas direct the same as before

    [Page 3]
    Savannah G.A.
    June 22nd 1865

    Dear Cousin I
    received your kind ltr [letter] last night, I was glad to here [hear] from you once more and glad to here that you was well. I have not had a letter before since I left Washington 22 days ago until last night I got 3 last night one from you and one from Marie and one from a friend of mine in P.A. I have not heard from home yet since I left W. but I expect I shall soon when I wrote to you before I thought I should soon be home but the heacting of this letter dont look much like it nor

    [Page 4]
    does it the last day of May we thought we should be home in a few days and the first day of June we got orders to go to Savannah which nocked all our Home thoughts in the head June 1st in the after noon we got orders to pack up and be ready to move we got ready and started left our camp near Brightwood and matched down threw [through] the City to the Steamboat dock when we got Aboard of Steamer A. Harder and went to Alexandria there we got transfered [transferred] to an Ocean Steamer the Matanzas and started from Alexandria at daylight the 2nd got in to the Savannah River in the forenoon of the 5st and there we got transfered from the Mantanzas in to a River Steamer the U.S. Grant the Mantanzas drawing too much water to run up the River after we got on to the U.S. Grant we started go to Savannah at 6 Oclock [o’clock] P.M. the 5th got of [off] from the Steamer and matched threw [through] the City and went in to camp just out side of the City where the Regiment shift gunner’s but I dont remain there with them I am Fasining it the 9th of this month I was detailed as a safe guard out about a mile from camp most in a farmers place to keep the Soldiers from destroying his property he is a real nice man and good to the Soldiers to if they come and ask him to any thing he give it to them so they dont try to steal from him they dont bother me a tall I dont have any thing to do unless I am a ?nnd to any time I wan [want] to go to the City I can take his Horse and buggie [buggy] and go and if I am hungry I can get something to eat and that that is good to they live life tof here I tell you I shoudt [shouldn’t] complain of my duty here while I am in Savannah if I have the same duty all the while that I have got

    [Page 5]
    nice but still I had rather be discharged and to home than here after all but I dont think we shall get home nor ride away I think we are good for 6 months here in Savannah if not more it is a very prety [pretty] place here by prety sickley [sickly] we can get most any thing we want here Vegetables of all kinds most are in there prime now. and also Blackberry and Whistleberry are ripe now and a plenty of them at that so you see there is a plenty of every thing here now I dont know as I have got much more news to write this time pleas [please] write to me again soon for I like to here from you after I am well and hope this will find you and all your folks the same give my best Love to Uncle Channey and Aunt Caroline and Frankie and all enquiring friends and I send best Love to you so good bye for this time pleas accept these few lines from your affectionate Cousin
    Roland G Smith

    [Page 6]
    Summit Point V.A.
    March 25th 1865

    Dear Cousin Nettie
    I received your kind letter the 14th of this month and I should have answered it before but I have been on duty so much lately that I have not had much time to write. I was glad to here [hear] from you once more and glad to here that you was well and all the rest of your folks. have you heard from Father yet if you have let me know when you write again I have wrote three letters to him but have not got an answer from any of them if you have not

    [Page 7]
    heard from him lately I will write to his Captain and see what has become of him he may be a Prisoner as you say I guess he is if there aint [ain’t] any body heard from him lately for I am shure he would answer write to some one if he was not you said that you heard that Ida Hough was dead and wanted to know if I knew whether it was so I do not know whether it is or not but one of his Sons tents with me and he has not heard of it and if it was so I should thought he would heard of it. I havent [haven’t] got much news to write this time there is nothing new here the same thing left over and over day after day first Picket then Camp guard the Police and so on but I dont think we will hafto [have to] do a Soldiers duty much longer for I think this war is about over every thing looks like it was any way the South is whiped [whipped] now and they know it all the Private soldiers of the South say so and say there is no use of fighting any longer and they are deserting and coming in to our lines now as fast as they can there is a few leading men in the South that wanto [want to] hold out as long as they can now they know they are whiped but I dont think that can be very long now. but I am afraid that before or by the time that peace is declared between North and South that the United States will be at war with Foreign Naitions but I hope not but if it does we will hafto [have to] take it the best we can I suppose. the Bible says that all Naitions [Nations] shall be at war with each other and I think some times that this is the beginning of that war but I hope and Trust not though I hope the time will soon come when peace is restored

    [Page 8]
    To our land and that we Soldiers may go home once more and see our Friends and relatives and I trust God it will I dont [don’t] know as I have got much more to write this time please write to me again soon for I like to here from you often give my Love to Uncle Channey and Aunt Caroline and Frankie and all enquiring Friends and I send my best Love to you so good bye for this time this from your
    Affectionate Cousin
    Roland G Smith
    PS) Please started the same as before

    [Transcription by McCaela Michas]

  • Source

    Ms 101789

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    Roland G. Smith . "Roland G.Smith to Cousin Nettie ". Remembering Lincoln. Web. Accessed February 24, 2024. https://rememberinglincoln.fords.org/node/866