The Battle of Fredericksburg, Confederate letter & Patriot...Click the image to load the highest resolution version.
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DescriptionThe Battle of Fredericksburg, Confederate letter & Patriotic Cover: "The Yankees thrown their dead men in piles".
It is rare to find a battle letter that also has a valuable Confederate patriotic cover with it...so often they are separated. The cover for this letter pictures the 11 star flag, the "stars and bars" at the left with a patriotic verse "Gather Around your Country's Flag, Men of the South, the Hour has Come." There is a partial strike "RICHMOND, VA. JAN. 7, 1863" postmark and "DUE 10". On the left side of the envelope our writer gives his full I.D.: "Soldiers letter J. W. Jones Co. D, 48 Regt. Miss. Vols."
The letter is 2 pages written on legal size stationery. It is headed "In Camp near Fredericksburg, Va. January 4th, 1863". Reads in part:
"We had fight here in December. We lay under the shells of the Yankee's Batteries for five days. We only had one man killed and five wounded in our Regiment."
"I walked up on the hill where our Batteries was and looked over in town, and I saw that our men was in town and they were stripping the Yankees everywhere I could look. It too barbarous to see how our men done them. They stripped some of them stark naked before the women that was in the town and went off and left them."
"but I can say to you that the Yankees was piled on the field. The Yankees thrown their dead men in piles and thrown dirt on them for breastworks to fight us behind and to keep us from knowing how many of them we killed."
. I can say to you that we found them in the houses that we shelled, some in the loft. Some under their beds and some in the cellar and also the chimney. Corners was full of them. We slain them on every side and from what we can learn on our right wing, where Jackson Force was, they killed more than we did here."
"They say that the Yankees charge Jackson 8 times, and he repulsed them every time."
Jones concludes the letter by talking about sending and receiving letters. He states "as I can't get any stamps, I will have to frank my letter." Thus you see the "Due 10" on the envelope! The letter is in fine condition. The cover is complete (a rarity to have the backflap still attached) and is made of poor quality Confederate paper, thus having some light foxing. From the Calvin Packard Civil War Battlefield Letter Collection
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