31 October 1861: “You must not get fretted at any thing that happens”

Item description: Letter, dated 31 October 1861, from Robert W. Parker (2nd Virginia Cavalry of the Confederate States of America Army) in Cavalry Camp, near Centerville, to his wife, Rebecca Louise Fitzhugh Walker. In his letter, Robert advises “Duck” to be more patient and not get so upset and worried.

[Transcription available below images.]

Item citation: From volume 1 in the Robert W. Parker Papers, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Item transcription:


my jaw pains me but lil

Cavalry Camp, near Centerville

Oct the 31, 61

Dear Wife

I seize this opportunity of answering your very interesting letter of the the 25, which arrived a few days since with the sad news of the death of my Dear cousin Missouir, one of my dearest friends on earth, great was the shock of that sad news to me for she has ever proved to be one of my warmar friends ever since we know what friendship was she was ever punctual when I was fair from home and friends to write to me lasting will her memory be to me; Oh I shall miss her so much; wish I could have seen her: but dear as she is to us we will haave to give her up hope through the Blessing of kind providence she is better off than when here in this troublesome world- – –

Dear Duck I would have answered your letter before this had it not been for several reasons when I give them to you I am sure you will forgive me for not answering sooner Ever since the reception of your letter I have been laid up with the toothache. i bien to have it pooled but being nothing but a shell it broke off at the gums which made it no better on yesterday evening I was taken with pneuralgia and toothache and this morning my jaw was a sight all swolen up. it has pained me but little comparatively to day hope it is a good deal better. as to my general health it is very good. I have no news interesting for you this evening but such as I have give I thee. all our company are out on picket except those that are sick and live or those well ones to take care of things

They left this evening and as they were paid yesterday for two months wages left a good part of it with me. I think I have some where from five hundred to a thousand dollars now in my pocket a good time to run with a pocket full if I wished to

My two months wages a mount to the even sum of fifty Dollars I wish you had a bout forty five of it. I have never used the first piece out of my belt yet. silvir and gold is quite scarce in camp if the boys know I had it they would soon tease me out of it I guess —-

our army seemes very quiet now haven’t heard of any late move of the enemy as definite. we have an alarm every few nights and have to pack up but all prove to be false so far. I think it very doubtful a bout their attack us this winter though they may at any time which would not surprise us. I have now late news from leesburg; the last was all quiete

you wished to know a bout the clothes they suit very well the coat fits well and I am very well pleased.. the suit you have at home colour it hicory Bark will coulor them very nice any colour suits better than light in camp… I wish you could go down home but recon you cant. you seem to have rather a bad opinion of McNuman dont wish the to cach him for they are not fit to have any southerners Duck you must not get fretted at any thing that happens; do like I try to do not to get fretted any thing I try to take everything fair and easy. since I have been quarter master some of the boys say I suit better than any [body] in the company except Sam Murrill because we dont get mad at any thing I knew before I commenced it it required almost the patience of job. Duck I have one of the best fellows in the company for my bed fellow it is Sam Murrill. he is one of the best fellows I ever saw. I dont think that Phelps will succeed in getting in his substitute as I learn the colonel has refused to take him Fields is driven the wagon now

you must excuse this short note I have given you all the news I have I havent half the news you have around home. Ive written you two letters the last I wrote and sent them by hand by uncle Job W Lipscomb

Farewell Dear wife my love to you and all Mr Phelps well as usual accept the best love and a kiss from devoted but unworthy husband R W Parker  (write soon) Robert

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