Two early war Confederate letters on Patriotic stationery ...Click the image to load the highest resolution version.
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DescriptionTwo early war Confederate letters on Patriotic stationery - Great examples of the South's Patriotic spirit.
In 1861 as the various Southern states seceded they showed their patriotic spirit by using colorful envelopes and letter sheets. The two in this group represent Tennessee and Georgia.
LETTER NUMBER ONE: The Tennessee example shows a crude 7 star flag that the printer really messed up. Perhaps he was in a hurry to get his stationery in circulation. Hopefully the buyer John P. Bass of the 3rd Tennessee Infantry got a big discount! Beside the flag is the sellers name: "Sold at Green & Co's. Book Store, Nashville, Tenn." The letter is headed, "Camp Cheatham (TN.), June the 2nd, 1861". The writer John P. Bass was apparently very young as he is writing to his "Dear Schoolmates". The content is exactly what you would expect a young boy to talk about... very cute descriptions. The letter reads:
Camp Cheatham (TN.)
June the 2nd, 1861
I am idle this evening so have concluded to write you a few
lines, but I suppose you all know where we all are, for I expect
Mr. has told you both. Camp life is a very hard life, harder than I
expected, but it agrees with me very well, but it disagrees with
some. There is home sickness in the Regiment that Tom Jones is in.
He is about seven or eight hundred yards from my Regiment. Some of
them have the measles very bad, but Ella, do not become frightened.
Little Tom has not got them yet. Baxter Sheltom has got them very
bad, but I expect he will get well. We have not got them in our
Regiment yet, but I expect will have them. The hospital is filled
up. Ella & Sarah, do not tell Ma that the measles is here because
she will become alarmed. There is three Regiments here which is
three thousand men. There was thirty men got away last night. The
whole Regiment is guarded all around for a mile, and one of the men
that got away went up to the guard, and the guard did not want him
to pass and he struck the guard across the head and broke his
skull. He belonged to the Rock City guards from Nashville, and we
have not heard anything from them. Since I see Tom nearly every
day, I will tell you both how I get along with cooking. I have to
make coffee and Jim S. Wilson has got to cook meat. u We
have plenty to eat, such as it is. Bread that has been cooked a
year and pickled beets /u . Ella, I saw Miss Icier yesterday. Her
brother is here. She looks as pretty as ever. u All of Mr.
Elliot's school, that is all the young ladies, presented Mr.
Field's Company with a banner /u . They went back to Nashville on
the carrying train. Two and three trains run here every day. I must
close. Direct your letter to Springfield, Roberson County, in the
care of Mr. Lt. C. Barber. Give my love to Georgia and all the
rest. Write immediately. Give me all the news. John B. Bass
The letter is 4 pages in ink and has several dark age spots.
LETTER NUMBER TWO: The Georgia example is headed, Camp Stevens October the 14th, 1861". The flag shown on this one has 11 stars and underneath has printed, "I go to Illustrate Georgia." – Bartow." Camp Stevens was the main training camp for all Georgia troops. Francis S. Bartow was the Colonel of the 8th Georgia. He was the first high ranking Georgian to be killed in the Civil War. At the battle of Bull Run he charged seizing the regimental colors and was shot through the heart. His death became a rallying call just like the death of Ellsworth was in the North.
The letter was written by James Carlile, Co. A of the 4th Georgia Infantry. Writing to a friend, in part:
"We have been expecting to hear marching orders for several days, but now we have lost all confidence in getting soon. Still it may be wickedness in me, but I should not be satisfied if the war was to end and we were not to get a fight. Still I have not seen much of the world, but I think I have seen all kinds of people you can see, any kind of employment you want. I believe old Bill Calhoun (3rd Georgia Infantry) is about as straight as any, and you know he never stole nothing in his life larger than a Buffalo."
"Still I have nothing interesting to write. Write to Lime as soon as you get this, and tell me who is dead and who is married. Give my love and best respect to all my friends and accept a portion for self. I remain your friend. Write soon. James Carlile". A two page letter In good condition with some age staining.
A fine pair of Confederate letters. From the Calvin Packard Civil War Battlefield Letter Collection
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