21 October 1863: “… a box of eatables and some lard…”

Item description: Letter, dated 21 October, 1863, from James A. Graham to his father, William Alexander Graham.  In this letter, Graham discusses the state of the railroad in Virginia, food shortages, and clothing.

[transcription available below images]

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Item citation: From the James A. Graham Papers # 283, Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

 Item transcription:

Camp of 27th No.Ca. Infty

near Rappahannock river

Oct 21st 1863

My dear Father,

We are camped about a mile or two south of the Rappahannock river near the Orange & Alexandria Rail Road.

I think it very likely that we will stay in this section for some time, for the Yankees will hardly attempt a forward movement soon as the R.R. is torn up from this place to Mannasses and the winter will soon be here.  We have been placed in Gen. Heth’s Division A. P. Hill’s Corps.

Brother Joe’s battery is attached to our Division.  He is camped near us and was at our Camp yesterday.

My leg has gotten nearly well and I have returned to duty with the Company.

If Lieut. Strayhorn has not left home please give him the money to pay for my coat ($110.) and ask him to call at Royston’s as he comes through Petersburg and get my coat and bring it to me.  The cloth was left there Oct 1st and it was to be done in ten days.

I left my sword belt and haversack hanging up in the passage when I left home.  Please send them to me by Lt. Strayhorn or the first one coming to the Co. Please send by Walter Thompson when he comes, a box of eatables and some lard, for we don’t get anything now-a-days but beef and flour and can buy nothing in the country for it has been completely overrun by the Yankees.  I understand that Walter Thomp-son will start to the Co. about the 27th or 28th.

There is no new about here at all and we know nothing of what is going on elsewhere for we hardly ever see a paper.

Love to all.  Write soon to

Your affectionate son,

James A. Graham


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