Six miles east of Richmond, Va
June 8th 1862
As this is Sunday and we are at leisure for the first time in two weeks, will spend a few moments in writing. Before this reaches you you will have heard of the battle of Chickohominy [Seven Pines] on Saturday and Sunday last.
We had thirty thousand men engaged against over forty thousand of the enemy. Our loss was twenty five hundred or over, in all. That of the enemy is not known but is no doubt verry heavy, for the battle field was thickly strewn with the dead for miles along the lines.
We captured fifteen pieces canon, some small arms, and considerable army stores of various kinds. Our [Generals] claim a victory but it is my opinion it was dearly bought. Our lines have been drawn in and the yanks occupy nearly the same ground they did before the fight. They are busy night and day fortifying in three hundred yards of our picket lines.
They are shelling us every day but seldom hurt any one. Our Brigade has been on duty night and day for two weeks. In line of battle all the time. Allowed no fires at night. Rained nearly every day. We were relieved last night by a Geo[rgia] Brigade. We were not in the battle but expected it every moment. Were marched on the battle field about dark on Saturday amid a perfect shower of bullets. But one man wounded in our Reg.
We lay on the battle field that night, and we would hear the groans and the shrieks of the dieing and wounded, all night. Men were passing to and from the field all night in search of their wounded friends. Such a sight I hope never to see again.
Gen. Johnston is seriously wounded. Our loss in field officers was heavey. Four or five generals were killed or wounded. Gen. Lee has ordered that all the officers go into battle on foot. A good thing for they will not bee half so apt to bee killed.
Well love this is a dark hour to our infant government. But I hope and pray that a brighter one will come and that soon. I suppose the gallant Beaureguard has left Corrinth, but we don’t know where he has gone to. I hope the evacuation will bee for the best. I will not bee satisfied if he makes a stand at Columbus or Jackson. If so our noble state will be almost laid waste.
Some say and in fact it is generally reported here [that] the Creole Gen. [Beauregard] is in Richmond and will take command today, but I don’t believe a word of it. The yanks seem to be at a perfect loss to know where he has gone to. No doubt he will work the thing all right.
Our men are dieing in the city [hospitals] at an average of seventy five per day. A good many are sick from our company but none seriously. Have not heard from Harvie in two weeks. Charles, Frank and myself are all well but are dirty and lousey as hogs. We sent all our clothing with the wagons and I almost know they are all ruined for they were wet when we sent them off.
I had to stop writing to read one of your precious letters written on the 16th last month. The first since Ford came up. You have no idea how much good it did me to read one [more] letter from your precious self. I am sorry you are so low spirited. You must cheer up my love. You [ask] why I don’t get a furlough and come home as well as others. Well none has gone home that is worth any thing here.
I love you dearly and would give as much to bee with you as any man would to see their loved one but I cannot use deception that you know. I have written to you any time there has been any chance of sending a letter and will continue to do so as long as there is any paper to bee had.
I need the clothing you have for me verry much. Will try and come home for them, or send by some one. We all need clothing and will have to get them from home mostly. Cant get every thing we want here. As soon as affairs are a little settled we can send home. I have the quilt yet which serves for a tent. Also my Bible and your likeness.
I read my Bible nearly every day. You need not fear my going wild for I think I am steadier than when I left home. I remain as ever your husband.