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The Hugh Johnson Civil War Letters

Camp before Corinth Miss Popes Division Elliots Brigade May 3rd, 1862 Dear Son as I have been writing to mother I will drop a line to you to let you know that I still remember my children[.] if I am [ ? ] & as you art a dutiful Son & your mothers pride & joy it is my duty to sympathise with you in your labors & if Duty did not keep me here I would rejoin you & let your young mind be at rest[.] you have Done nobly[.] continue & you shall have your reward [.] take good care of yourself[,] your mother & your brothers & Sister[.] I have $33.00 in money[.] I wish you had $25.00 of it[.] it would help you along & it is of no use to me[.] we were mustered for payment on the Last day of April[.] the wether is warm here now like June in Iowa[.] the health of our Co is good[.] we are all able to be about. I am lazy[.] there are none in hospital in our Co. Since I have been writing to you our boys have taken past our tent 62 prisoners & Some of our boys are guarding them now[.] in Sight they look hard. Such is the fate of those that rebel. I send you Harpers Weekly paper[.] you will have to pay the postage as I have no paper now & then get Mr Crawford to give you advice about farming or Mr McComb. write often as I read your letters wirh plesure[.] my respects to you all[.] no more at present[.] Adieu from your Pa[.] H Johnson ----------------------- Camp Before Corinth Miss May 3rd, 1862 Dear & beloved wife I take my pencil to inform you that I am middling well[.] it is my prayer to God that this may find you & our children well. I think long for a letter from you[.] this is the 5[?]th one that is unanswered at this time[.] 1 from Ark[,] 2 from this point[.] the time passes weary along when not very well[.] I am better this morning[.] I have been Sick with the Stomick & no appetite for a few days but I had a cup of tea & some fresh beef this morning & [?] as if I were at home to watch you cook diner[.] it would be a pleasure to me[.] it would make me feel 10 years younger but I must forego that pleasure at present[.] but I hope the day will soon Come when I can enjoy your Severity with pleasure & our Country in peace[.] but if there is no liberty in our Country & we must be ruled by the Slave Oglarchy of the South[,] I would prefer to die on the battle field if by doing would give my children the Same rich blessing I have enjoyed. Give me liberty or death. it is thought there will be the hardest battle fought here that has been fought in modern times. our army is within 5 miles from Corinth[.] that is the advance. our Camp is 9 miles from Corinth[.] we advanced 5 miles yesterday[.] all our boys are not all in yet[.[ A Crawford[,] J Mc & some 10 of our boys are back at the last Camp[.] they will be here to day with the baggage[.] Andrew is able for duty now & John Mc reported for light Duty[.] the boys are mostly well[.] we have good water here & a very broken & rough contry. you would think there would be Some hungry men in an army of 150,000 men but there is plenty[.] we get our rations as regular as if we were at home[.] our provisions per day is 1 pound bread[,] 3/4 lb pork[,] 1 1/2 ;bs of Sugar for 10 men[,] 1 lb of Coffe for Do[,] 1 qt of beans[,] 1 qt of rice for Do[,] & vinegar[,] molasses & potatoes[.] 2 times a week we have plenty[.] I now Sit down again[.] since writing the above to horse has been Sounded & our regt gone (that is all the horses that is fit) toward Corinth[.] the object I know not[.] I wish I was fit to be along with the boys. I was out in a skirmish 5 days ago[.] we drove the rebels 3 miles[,] burnt their tents & took 16 prisoners[.] our loss was 1 killed[,] 3 wounded[.] the man killed was of Co B[.] the wounded Co 2 of our regt[.] the wheat is in head[.] the oats & corn 3 inches high[,] peaches the size of cherrys & blackberries in bloom[.] my love to you all & rispects to Mr & Mrs C[,] Mr & Mrs Mc[.] tell them not to think hard of me for not writing to them as my time & opportunity will not permit at all times for when I have time my paper is behind in my knapsack[.] my love to the Children & yourself & I pray for your welfare[.] no more[.] from your husband[.] Adieu Cassy[.] at present more again[.] farewell H Johnson Direct to Elaine[.] Ill write often & do not lament for me[.]
Next letter:
May 7, 1862 Camp on Corinth Road

Previous letter:
April 28, 1862 Pittsburgh Landing Tenn

Index

HUGH JOHNSON entered the 2nd Iowa Cavalry, Company M from Andrew, Iowa. He left the family behind on the farm...his wife Catherine (Cassy) and four children. The oldest son, John, was but 12 years of age when his father went off to war. A fifth child, Hugh Elliot, was born approximately eight months after he left.. This child lived little more than a year. The constantly hoped for furlough that Hugh wished for was never granted, and he was killed on February 2, 1864, just north of West Point, MS. He was initially buried on the James Randall plantation, and later his body was transferred to the National Cemetery at Corinth.

Hugh Johnson Turnbull
hturnbul@lane.k12.or.us
1-541-895-4571

Hugh Johnson letters reprinted by permission of Hugh Johnson Turnbull from electronic, transcribed copies
submitted to Milton Sandy, Jr. April 1996



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