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    Union Surgeon's Letters (3) by Perez R. Randall of the 5th [West] Virginia Volunteers. Three letters, total of 9 pages, all 7.5" x 9.75", all written in 1862 to Richard M. Vinson. The first is dated February 23rd and is two pages reporting on the losses of his regiment at the Battle of Moorfield, West Virginia. In part: "... Our men are scattered and a good many [are] at Parkersburg... my assistant surgeon [is] there too and our hospital [is] there and hospital stores also. We do not know when we shall get together again...we have had some fighting here. I suppose you have seen the account of the Moorefield fighting which our regmt. done the most of it. We had a few wounded but none killed..." Heavy creasing and spotting, but remains very legible.
    His second letter (three pages) is written from Mount Jackson, Virginia and is dated June 15, 1862, with good battle and slavery content: "... we have been on a forced march for 5 or 6 weeks. We overtook Gen. [Stonewall] Jackson last Sunday and had a hard fight. Our Regt. lost 28 killed and wounded. Thos. Stafford of Paintsville was the first killed. His back bone was cut in two by a shell. I do not know the exact amt. lost by our army. The first accept was between 4 & 500, but I think it is over 600. We fought till night then the rebels run and burned a bridge behind them 12 miles this side of Stanton [Staunton?]... Fremont is with us and [is] commanding. We have about 30,000 men and the Reb Jackson is said to have more than we have. On a little more than an acre of ground where one of their batteries were we counted 27 dead horses and in following them we saw dead men, legs, arms and feet, broken wagons, dead horses, cloths, broken army equipments and almost everything. The battle was fought about 7 miles beyond Harrisonburg, Rockingham Co. where Col. Gray lives. I staid 3 nights with Col. Gray and was treated like a gentleman. He is a gentleman yet... Col. Gray tells me that he left some of his negroes with McHenry to work to pay their board & expenses and... he did not want to keep them any longer or their work did not pay expenses. He was to send them to Ben Spradling at Paintsville. This was the contract. Col. Gray had heard that McHenry has trumped up an acct. of $3 or 400, had them levied on in order to sell them... He made me promise to write you and get you to attend to getting the negroes to Ben Spradling or... get L. J. More to take them and keep them. He does not want the children separated from the mother, He will pay all expenses and if McHenry has a judgement do not let them sell. I myself will quarantine any...that is necessary to save them till Col. Gray can come and see to the business... We can not get a furlough when in the field and the enemy right by us. We may fight again within a few days. We are expecting that the enemy will be...reinforced from Richmond or that we will march for Richmond...there will be two or more great battles near here or at Richmond..." With a few ink smears, otherwise near fine with foxing along exterior folds.

    The last letter in the group is four pages, written at "Camp at Woodville, Eastern Va., Rapahannock Co., Army of Va., Milroy's Brigade, July 29, 1862". In part: "... We are now in eastern Va. with our army encamped around in a circuit of 30 miles and...have about 60 or 70,000 men under Gen. Pope. The Rebs are at Gordonsville and near...60,000 strong. We will have a grand battle before long. The Rebs under Stonewall Jackson and we under Gen. Pope. Gen. Sigel is on command of our division. It will be a hard fight. Our Genl. are anxious. I mean such Genl. as Milroy, Schenck, Stahl etc who are brigade Genls. What the event will be or who will survive the great battle is in the future...we drove Jackson away across the river at Port Republic 12 miles below Staunton, had a battle at Cross Keys near Port Republic where we lost about 1000 killed and wounded. We have marched in pain and right till our men would drop down by the side of the road exhausted and some had to be dragged from under the cannon wheels. We then marched back to Strausville Port Royal then up the Luray Valley [and] over the Blue Ridge to this place where we have been encamped two weeks...concentrating forces... I wish you would see L. T. More about those negroes of Col. Gray. He is very anxious about them... be very careful of yourself and the little ones...I have tried to get a black girl for you, but she left with our baggage train then [when] the train went to New Creek and there she was taken away from us. I do not know that I can find her again but you must have help... I have been in one battle. The others before this were only skirmishes but at Cross Keys... we had some 15,000 men engaged. I was in the rear of the regiment... the enemy saw our march down a little valley and after they had passed they poured cannon ball, grape and bombshell right into the place where I was. One cannon ball struck within struck within 3 feet of me... a bombshell came within 2 feet of my horse and me on him. We lost about 1000 men. In our Regt. about 32 killed and wounded. Thos. Stafford from Paintsville was the first killed. His back was cut in two by a shell..." The original transmittal cover, with stamped patriotic cachet is present. Letter is very clean, save a few tray spots of foxing. Cover has heavy wear, and has been cute open at all edges.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2016
    5th Tuesday
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