Center for Archival Collections
|Reference Services | Manuscripts by Subject | CAC Homepage|
George Kryder Papers - MS 163: Transcripts
Jan. 22, l863
Dear and loving Wife:
In answer to your kind and welcome letter of the 11 inst. which I rec'd yesterday and it gave me much pleasure to hear from you, but am sorry that you was not well but hope and trust that this may reach you all well and in good spirits. My health was never better than at this time. Henry is well. I had a letter from Samuel last Thursday and he is well.
And that morning we started out on a three days scout. We went to Liberty and there we had a skirmish with some of Morgan's cavalry, but they ran like fury and we took about 40 prisoners and killed and wounded several. There was some three or four of our men wounded but none killed that I know of. Our regiment did not get in the fight much so that I did not get a chance to fire my carbine at all. We had a good time till yesterday coming back it commenced raining and rained hard all the way, but we have got oil cloths to put over us so that we did not get wet.
You wanted to know in your other letter whether I had stockings and such things. I have all that I can take care of. We have very good clothes in general (and they gave me credit for those clothes that we turned over last spring). I drew about $2.00 more than they allowed us and they say that will come out of our next payment. My whole account was about $63.00 and they gave us credit for a little over $18.00 and this year coming I will not have to get half as much for I have good clothes on hand that will last me some time.
You said that you wished I could get my discharge. I am sorry to have you so lonesome, for if it were not for that I would not take a discharge under any circumstances, for I feel it my duty to be here for a can subdue the Rebels if it were not for the northern peacemakers who encourage the Rebels all the time. And they will keep on as long as they can for I think three months more will wind it up, but if it continues longer I think it will keep on another year. But I hope the time is short for I want to get to see you soon as I can, but there are no furloughs granted so that it is improbable at present to get home. But the officers of our Regiment are trying to get this Regiment to go to Ohio to recruit up and if they accomplish it, I will come and see you anyhow. But do not put too much dependence on this for they may fail and then you would be disappointed and would make you feel worse than if you had not thought about it. Only live in hope and do not despair. And try and take care of your health for I think our happy days are not all gone yet.
You say that Bail Wheeler says that I could get my discharge if I knew how. I am sorry there are so many such men as Bail, for our country would go to ruin for all such cowardly men as him that have got discharges under false pretence, though he may not be able for duty. But if he is not he deceives my mind. I am glad that you have got such good neighbors to help you along.
You say that father is married, which is a job of his own, and all I have to say is that I wish them good luck. And you said that we would have to shift for ourselves and wanted to know what I thought about that. That is just what I always expected to do for I never depended on him for help.
You say that I must not forget to write to Lillie. I always think of her but have not much to write to her, but I hope she is a good girl and I will always remember her. Tell me whether my gun is all right yet. You know I told you not to lend it to anybody. If I had a chance to come home I could bring a double barrel shot gun home. The Rebels use them most all and we capture a good many of them and if I could come home I could bring a good many trophies of different kinds.
Just now the artillery is firing a salute as it is the birthday of Washington. Every Battery in each division is to fire thirty two rounds and that makes it sound like as if there was a battle.
I have not much more to say this time so I must come to a close in hopes of hearing from you soon. No more but remain your true and affectionate Husband
Write soon and direct as before
Camp Standly, near Murfreesboro, Tenn.
Feb. 9th, l863
I again take my pen in hand to write a few lines to let you know that I am yet in the land of the living and enjoy good spirits till a few days ago. I hardly know what to think that I did not get any letter from you as the last letter that I got from you was dated Dec. llth and that was only a few lines that you sent with father's letter and I answered that and I have written two or three times since and have rec'd. no answer but am 1ooking for a letter from Samuel. He was at Lavergne, Tenn. and the next day the wagon train went to Nashville and I got leave to go along and I stayed two nights and one day with him. He was not very well at that time and I saw a letter that you wrote him and you said that you was not very well at that time and that has made me feel more uneasy but hope that this may reach you to enjoy good health and spirits.
I have not much to write this time as I have given you the particulars of our great battle and the skirmish where I was slightly wounded and my horse was shot with a buckshot but has got well of that. My back is nearly well so that it does not hurt me to do duty, and day before yesterday we went out with a forage train and when we went out nine miles, we had a skirmish with the Rebels for about five or six hours but none of our regiment was hurt. But one of the 7th Penn. boys was wounded in the thigh, and a ball struck the ground about twelve feet in front of me and glanced and struck my horse inside of the foreleg, but the ball was so near spent that it did not hurt him much, and he will soon be well of that shot.
We are on duty every other day, either go out after forage or else we are on picket. We are on picket today and I am sitting on my over coat and leaning against an oak sapling in the woods three miles from Murfreesboro on the Liberty Road (Pike). We live well here at present when we go out after forage, that is corn and fodder, we take what we can get, hams, chickens, turkeys, sweet potatoes and everything that is good to eat. Besides the rations that we draw, our mess has now about 100 lbs. of meat and about 25 lbs. coffee but we use our sugar as fast as we drew it. Some of our mess would use up more than their share so we divide it and I can save a good bit. Every little while I can trade it for milk or butter. While we laid at Nashville, I used to trade it for pies. I wish that you had it. What I do not use I could nearly keep you in sugar and you could not use all the coffee that we have to spare. I suppose that groceries are high but I will tell you to get what you want let it cost what it will for we have but one life to live.
I sent you $75.00 with Lyman Benham from Nashville. We were paid 7th Dec. and got six months pay that was $78.00 but I spent some money for some things that I needed. I paid 20 cts. for a hank of black thread and other things in proportion. I have not heard yet whether you got that money yet or not. I must bring this letter to a close in hopes that this may reach you all well and doing well. Write soon or if you are sick and cannot write, get someone to write for you, for it will not trouble much more to hear that you are sick than not to hear at all, and if you do not know where to direct, just direct to the last place where we were when I last wrote to you as they will always follow the Reg. when directed to the 3rd O.V.C. So please do not make me wait so long for them kind words from the one that I love more than all other earthly beings. So no more but still remain your true and affectionate Husband
Please write often and direct Co. I. 3rd O.V.C.
Camp Standley near Murfreesboro, Tenn.
Feb. 15, 1863
I am again endeavoring to communicate to you on paper that I am well and hope these few lines may reach you all well and to enjoy the comforts of home. I will tell you that yesterday I rec'd. your letter of the l9th of Jan. after waiting so long, as I had no letter from you since the 11th Dec and I wrote I three or four letters to you, and I began to feel uneasy about you but you can not imagine the pleasure it, gave me to hear from you once more.
You stated that the Rail Road was torn up and letters would not come through but I would say, send your letters and they will come by river if they can't come by Rail Road and you said that you had about $80. and said that Hartman and Bebee had paid you but did not say anything about the money ($75.00) that I sent you on the 8th of Dec. nor did you ever say anything about the money $15.00 that I sent you from Woodville by Mr. Warner. Now after this, if you do not get the money let me know it. Or if you get it do the same and not let me wonder or worry to know whether you got it or not, for I know that I wrote about it in my letter of Dec. 31st and two other letters that I have written since I wrote one on 8th and gave you most of the particulars and have not much news this time.
I wrote to you that I seen Samuel and saw a letter you wrote to him and he was not very well at that time. I have not been very well for four or five days. I had the diarrhea, but I stopped it with pepper sauce and now I feel as hearty as a buck and I would like to send you my picture, but it is not here as it is in the north that there is no Daguerrean office about here that I know of nearer than Nashville. You wanted to know what Henry does with his money but that is more than I can tell you for I never asked him and he never told me as he does not want everybody to know whet he does with it. And I think it would have been better if George would have kept it still about his money. You said that you was glad to have me write often and I think that you might write oftener than you do for I know that your letters are just as welcome as mine and you have no excuse for not writing oftener for it does me good to hear from you every week, instead of that it has been two months. But I hope I will hear from you oftener.
You say that I must be brave. I will be as brave as my courage will permit and if the rest do the same we will get along. You want to know if I have stockings and such things. I have all that I can take care of. I have very good clothes my bill of clothing for the 1st year is about $42.00 and some of the other men have $80. or $90. charged to them and do not go any better dressed than I do but they throw them away before they are half worn out and then draw new ones. You want to know how often I wash my clothes. I did wash and change my clothes every week and now we have a negro that cooks for us and he does our washing very well. We are allowed three cooks to the Com. and they are to be paid by the government. You want to know whether I can chew and smoke as much as any of them. As for chewing I have never come to and never will, but I have done some smoking and found it hurt me and so I quit it. I will not get mad at anything that you want to know of me. This would be a poor time to get mad at each other, for I can take any joke that you are a mind to give. You say that I never smile. Yes I can smile and laugh. We have a merry times among us and as for cheering up I will say, take that on yourself for I fear you worry too much which will not help the case. Keep up courage and hope for a better time to come, as I think it is not far distant.
We have had very little cold weather this winter and scarcely any snow yet. None to lay more than two or three days. About two weeks ago I shot a rabbit with my revolver coming in from picket and it made a good dinner for a few of us and we have chicken every little while and hams nearly all the time, and we are going to have sweet potatoes and ham for dinner with flour gravy. I am about out of postage stamps and if you can, I wish you would send me some. Well I have given you most all that I can think of now so I will come to a close in hopes that this may reach you all well. Write soon. No more this time. This is from your true and loving husband
Write soon and direct as before to Murfreesboro, Tenn.
My love and respect to all inquiring friends
The talk is now that we are going to get 4 months pay next and if so I think I can send you about 45 dollars.
Camp near Murfreesboro, Tenn.
March 2nd, 1863
I take my pen in hand to write a few lines to let you know that I am well and in good spirits. I rec'd. a letter from you day before yesterday of the 31st Dec. which was delayed on its way a good while and in that you told me that you got that other money that I sent to you and on the 28th of March we got 4 months pay and they took $1.14 out of my wages so I got $50.00 and 85cts. And I will send you $40 of that. I would send more but I may need it before I get paid again.
Today our boys that were paroled came back to us again. Yesterday morning we started out on a scout and found the rebels at Bradyville about 15 miles from here. There were 1,700 of them and we had quite a brisk skirmish with them and at last whipped them completely, killing four or five and how many wounded we do not know and took a great many prisoners. The exact number I could not ascertain but I saw 61 in one gang. There was none of our men killed but one of the 4th Ohio men was shot through the bowels and will die. There were only two of our regiment wounded: Deloss Ashley of our Co. was badly wounded in the arm and the ball went in under his arm and they cut out on his back, and the other was Thomas Thorp of Co. K was seriously wounded in the groin and it is likely to prove fatal. There were quite a number of horses shot. They shot mine for the third time so that we shot him dead after the fight. They shot Charles Benkan's [horse] and broke his fore leg and James killed him afterwards.
Capt. Colver of Co. K is going home tomorrow and so I thought I would send my money with him. There is some talk now that the soldiers are all to have furloughs in this department and if so I will try to come home as soon as I can, only do not despair. Keep in good cheer, for it does me good to see Butternuts [Rebels] skedaddle when we get after them, and how they beg for their lives when we take them prisoners. I have not much to say this time. I was glad for the list of the letters that I wrote to you. I hardly know what to write to Lillie but hope she is a good girl and pa will come home by and by.
No more this time, but hope this may reach you all well and that I may hear from you soon. This is from your kind and affectionate Husband
Write soon and direct as before.
March 15, 1863
It is with great pleasure that I am seated to drop a few lines to let you know that I am well and hearty and hope these few lines find you the same; I rec'd. two one of the 24th and one of the 28th and a few lines from Father and I was glad that you were well but I am sorry that you and Father have such a poor opinion of the war, for I know that we have men enough to whip the rebels to death if they are only a mind to do so, but there are so many to the north that are trying to discourage the soldiers all they can and if they would try to encourage them instead, this war would be ended long ago for they discourage the soldiers they encourage the rebels and that prolongs the war. But for all their discouraging and disheartening the soldiers I think yet that we can whip them out, for we are going to make another forward movement soon and if the rebels will stand and fight we will whip them so bad that they will not stand to fight our gallant General Rosecrans.
I will now tell you that we just came in from a 11 days scout yesterday. The first day we ran into a rebel camp in a sabre charge and took some 72 prisoners and all their wagons and camp equipment and that we burned all that we could not bring away with us. And after that we scouted around driving the rebels on every expedition and at last drove them across Duck River and then we came back to this place. The 3rd Ohio did not lose a man but the 4th Ind. and the 4th Regular lost a few men.
We lived well all the time we were out. When we wanted meat we would go to the smokehouse of some Rebels and get hams and honey and eggs and potatoes so that we had just as good living as I would ask for. But yet for all that it is not like sitting down to your nice clean table with everything nice and clean. But do not despair for I think that I can get a furlough before long. For the Adjutant General says that all the orderlies shall have furloughs and one from our Company is orderly for Gen. Wood and he says he don't want to go home, and I think I can go in his place. But do not despair if I should not come for if I can I will have my likeness taken and send it to you.
Coming back to camp yesterday we passed the 74th Ind. about a mile to our left but did not have time to go and see Samuel [he](like many other new soldiers) is very tired of the service and that is what is the matter of our Army. If the new troops would pitch in and fight like the old ones do, the rebels would not last long for they say some of our old Regs. like the 3rd and 4th Ohio do not know when they are whipped.
Our Paroled Boys have all come back and we have 58 men in our Company again and today we drew 25 new Carbines. The rebels hate to get in contact with the 3rd Ohio. They say that our short guns shoot wicked.
I have not much more to write this time but will tell you that on the 28th March we got 4 months pay and I sent you $40.00 by Captain Colver. I drew fifty dollars and 85 cts. They settled up our clothing and they took $1.14 out of my wages. Now you wrote about money not being worth much and you seem to be afraid that greenbacks will break, but don't believe it for they are the best money except gold and silver.
I am glad you sent me them eight stamps for I was out. You say that you sent me some week before last, but I did not get them if you did. I know it must be hard work for you to write so many letters, but you must not sit too at a time. You said you ought to write to Uncle Jonas. I wrote to him some since, but got no answer yet. You wrote to me how many letters you had from me, but I know I wrote more than that. But I do not think it is our head men that destroy the letters but carelessness in our postmasters.
I shall be sorry if you will have to move this spring, but if I can I will come and see you. But there is no certainty yet. I was glad to see the locks of our little girls but I would rather see them than their hair. But I think I will before long. I have your picture yet and when I feel a little down hearted I look at it and that relieves my heavy thoughts.
Henry is well but you would hardly know us for we are all tanned as black as Indians. The boys are well and hardy and in fine spirits and if we should get in another fight the rebels will have to suffer.
Well, I have not much more to write this time. Lillie, when I can get away from here I will come home a little while to see you and Ma and little Mary. Then we will have a nice time of play and you must be a good girl to Ma and little Mary. No more at present but remain as ever your true and affectionate
Camp Standley, Murfreesboro, Tenn.
March 23rd, l863
Dear and beloved Wife,
I am again seated to drop a few lines to let you know that I am well and hearty and hope these few lines may reach you in good health and spirits. I rec'd. your letter of the 6th and was glad to learn that you was well, but I am sorry that you are so lonesome which I can well imagine how it is; but they say that we are all to have a furlough this spring. But only five at a time out of every hundred men so I do not know how soon my turn will come, but I hope before I will have another letter to write. But do not despair. Keep up courage and live in hopes. You say that you have no one to speak to, only our little girls. That is true but I would say speak kindly to them and they will afford you some pleasure and comfort.
I will now tell you why I did not answer your letter sooner. I got it after we had saddled up for a two day scout and did not get back till Saturday evening and yesterday we went out on inspection, so this is the first opportunity.
You told about the folks making sugar. I wish I was there to enjoy some of it with you. When you hear that we have a fight here do not trouble yourself till you hear the particulars. Then there is time enough for there are many little skirmishes that none of our men are hurt.
You want to know what you should do for a garden. I will tell you my opinion that it is cheaper for you to buy your garden sauce than to slave yourself and make yourself sick and then pay a doctor bill. It is too hard work for you. You want me to say what I think about that affair of Moore's. I hardly know what to say about it. But if he wants to settle it, you can take just what you think is right for you have made up your mind what you would take before I left home and you can use your own best judgement about it, that is, if he was to settle it. Or if you are a mind you can write to Pennewell and let him collect it. Only do not trouble yourself about such things for they cannot hurt you if you keep in your place (of which I have no doubt).
I was not well pleased with the discouraging letter that father wrote and sent with yours and I wrote back to him that I did not thank him for such letters. For I know that the North can whip the South if they are a mind to keep on. You said that you had not heard from Samuel in a long time. I had a letter from him about a week ago and he said that he was sick and was going to try to get a sick furlough and go home and recruit up a little.
You say that you are sorry that I enlisted. I am not sorry and I will tell you why. If I had not volunteered I would have been drafted and how much worse would I feel to be forced to do a thing than to do it with my own free will. Think of it and I believe you will say "you are right George." You say you are afraid that people will talk about you. Only do not give them any chance and then you need not care how much they talk for I just know just how it is. And I never will put any dependence on such talk unless I think there is some thing of it but that has been the least of my trouble for I have got full confidence in you as ever and hope you have the same in me.
I must come to a close in hopes of hearing from you soon. I remain as ever your true and loving Husband,
March 31, 1863
I now take my pen in hand to write to you in answer to yours of the 23rd which I rec'd. today and was very glad to hear from you but am sorry to think that you don't know whether I get your letters or not. I think I get nearly all of them and I answer all that I receive. You wanted to know whether I sent my last money home or not. I sent $40.00 by Capt. Colver and I kept about 12 dollars. The talk is that we are to have furlough this spring and if so I thought that I would need some money to come home with.
You say that you sent me stamps twice but I did not get but one of them and that one had eight stamps in it and in that one you said that you had sent me some before I wrote you about it.
I am very sorry to hear that your health is so poor but I hope that this letter may reach you well and in good spirits. You say that it is lonesome for you to stay there alone, but all that I can say is for you to keep up courage and do the best you can for a little while longer and I think we will see each other before long.
You say that you have Rebels there at home of which I am well aware but you must not fear them for the rebels will never get there to fight. I know they had not ought to let men run that say they would help the rebels if they would come to the north. You ask me whether I blame you for being afraid. No, I do not but I hope you will keep up good spirits and hope and trust nothing serious may befall you.
Now you ask me what you shall do for a garden. You say you are not able to work at it yourself. I wrote to you once before that I do not think it prudent for you to work and slave yourself to make a garden and make yourself sick and pay a doctor bill. It will be cheaper for you to buy your garden sauce of your neighbors.
You ask me whether we have had a battle here. We have not had any hard battle yet but we had a good many skirmishes but I have not been killed nor wounded. And I hope you will not worry yourself much about me till you hear that I am hurt, for I am as well and as hearty as I ever was.
I am glad that our little girls are well and full of fun. I just came back from Nashville today. We went up last Friday to guard a wagon train that went for hay and we had to come back afoot to Lavernge and there I stayed all night with Samuel. He has lost his speech from a Bronchial affection. He can not speak above a whisper and I read that letter that you wrote to him. I think it hit him pretty well for he seems to take it pretty cool.
I got a letter from Uncle Jonas Kryder and he has moved to Spencer, Medina County and he wrote that he heard that John was wounded on Stone River on the 31st Dec. and died on the 2nd Jan. by the name of Capt. Greenwood in a rebe1 hospital.
In Murfreesboro it is quite cold today. The air feels like snow. I believe I have given you nearly all the particulars so I must bring this letter to a close in hopes that it may reach you well and in good spirits and that I may hear from you soon. No more this time but I remain as ever your true and devoted
Husband, George Kryder
Now to Lillie, I hardly know what to write but hope you will be a good girl to Ma and little Mary and by and by Pa will come and see you and then we will have a nice time to play on the carpet. You must mind Ma and not be naughty and then everybody will like you, so Good-Bye this time.
How does it come that you did not put the directions on your last letter yourself? It was a business hand writing and perhaps someone opened your letter and tore the envelope and then put on another. It is not your writing. It has begun to rain and looks as if it was going to rain all night.
You are afraid I will be hard hearted when I get home, which I think will be the case but if I do not lose my reason yet I think I will know where to use sympathy. But it would not do for those rebels to talk to me as they would to you, for I would rather shoot one of them cowardly villains than one of these down here who are in ignorance.
I wrote a letter to Uncle Jonas the other day. He sold his farm in Huntington and bo't a small place in Spencer, Medina Co., Ohio. Calvin is working close to Huntington for $15. per month. I shall be glad if Anna is teaching school. She will be out of the hands of that old tyrant. You did not say where Met. was working. I should think it would not be pleasant to work out and be a slave for people then to keep house herself, would you? I hear you say NO.
This is all for this time
so Good Bye
To E. S. Kryder and L. G. K. and M. E. K.
Bowling Green State University | Bowling Green, OH 43403-0001 | Contact Us | Campus Map | Accessibility Policy