Sample Chapters | Chapter 2

Chapter 2

January 13, 1863

Fredericksburg:  "The news of our brother's death was unexpected to me, although I knew that his regiment was hotly engaged. In fact, our division relieved the one he was in, and we remained on the same field in line of battle for over fifty hours before we were relieved...You have no doubt read of that horrid slaughter (I can call it by no milder name) long before this time."  Orrin L. Gatchell

Letter from Chapter 2. January 13, 1863 

Camp Near Falmouth1
 VA Jan 13th/63

Dear Sister,2

I received the letter that you wrote to Eliza. It came enclosed in one of hers tome and was received some days ago. I would have written before now but we have been very busy building winter quarters.

Your letter brought sad news to me. I have been trying or rather watching for Calvin’s regiment all through the campaign but have never been fortunate enough to get nearer than ten miles to them while in camp, and that is much farther than soldiers are allowed to go from their regiment in an enemy’s country. The news of our brother’s deathwas unexpected to me, although I knew that his regiment was hotly engaged. In fact, our division relieved the one he was in, and we remained on the same field in line of battle for over fifty hours before we were relieved. On the field of battle, a soldier can see or know no one except the one directly in front of him or two or three men immediately to the right or left of him, so you see that we have but a small chance of learning by observation who is or who is not killed or wounded.


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