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Hill/Morgan Family Papers - MS 190: Transcripts

Guy Morgan to Henry W. Hill - 1862

January 3, 1862

Camp Jefferson
Jan. 3rd 1862

Friend Henry,

I take my pen in hand to inform you that I am well and the rest of the boys from our neighborhood that is in camp now are well. Russel Vancise is in Louisville and he has been there for two weeks. I received your letter. I was glad to hear from you, to hear that you are all well at home. It is healthery [healthier?] now in our Regiment and it has been a while back. There was seven of the boys come in camp last week that belongs to Company K that has been in the hospital at Louisville sick with the measles. George Macfall died the twenty first of December in the hospital at Louisville. Macfall was a young and slender boy. His first sickness was diarrhea. He was run down with the diarrhea till he was so weak that he could hardly go any more. When he was taken with the measles they give him a discharge to go home but the poor boy was too near gone then to get well. The boy inquired the night before he died of one the boys if there wasn't some way to get him down on the boat so he could go home but he was near gone then.

Leonard Fair come in camp last night. He has had measles. He come from Louisville yesterday. Leonard says the boys that is yet sick at Louisville are all gaining except Lucius Carie. He says Lucius is pretty sick yet. There was a spell last week they thought he would not live. He is some better now. This is a poor (place) for a man to be when he is sick. There is nothing here fit for a sick [man to] eat.

Today is a wet and rainy day. It commenced raining last night about midnight and rained till about seven this morning and slacked up till about one this afternoon when it commenced raining again and it is raining yet. But we can't complain much about the weather since we have been in this part of Kentucky. There has not been much stormy weather since we come to Louisville. The most of the time we have nice and warm weather here. We have things fixed now so we can keep middling warm nights and stormy weather. We have got sheet iron stoves in our tents. You can keep a tent pretty warm inside with one of these stoves. The boys had to buy the stoves with their own money. The stoves cost two dollars a piece.

Christmas I was up to Green River eight miles from here. I went up there to see the boys in the 49 Regiment. I found them all well except Edward Tucker. He was in the hospital at Louisville sick at that time. I seen William Franklin, John Brine, Ozies Sclits [?], Clayton Everet and William Wicker. William don't look much like he did when he lived at your fathers. Bill come up to me and called me by name. I looked at the boy a good bit before I knew him. Bill had been sick. He looked quite slim to what he used to look. I had a good time Christmas with the boys. They had a good dinner. They had a box of bread and chickens, butter cakes sent from Fostoria to them. They got it in time for Christmas. New Years I was on guard. General Sil commands the brigade that this reg. is in. General Mitchell commands this div. We are in third division.

From your Guy Morgan to H.W. Hill.

January 30, 1862

[In top margin:] Please write soon. I stood guard the first day of this month and I will have to stand guard the last day if I am well I will be on picket tomorrow

Camp Jefferson, Kentucky
Jan. the 30th, 1862

Friend Henry

I received your kind letter yesterday of the 16th and I was glad to hear from you, but I was sorry to hear that you were unwell at that time. I hope that this letter will find you in a better state of health than you was at the time you wrote to me. Your letter found me in pretty good health but I have not been well long. I have had a sick spell caused by a cold. I was pretty sick for three or four day[s]. I am about rid of the cold now and I feel pretty well again. Wait Hastings is sick. He has been sick for three days. Wait has been pretty sick. He is some better today. Wait is in the tent that I stay in, or I might say, live in. Charly is as fat as a swine.

Byron Roguewood is sick. He is in camp with us. Byron has been sick for over a week. The rest of the boys that is in camp are kicking round. Some are gruntin' round with the cold and some are as well and full of fun as they ever was. I have been vaccinated for the small pox about a week or two ago but it did not work on me.

There is two cases of small pox in our Regiment now. As soon as they was found out to have the small pox, they was taken out of camp and taken out in the woods and put in a tent by themselves. Both of these men are men that has been in the hospital at Louisville. I suppose there is where they ketched the small pox. One of these men belongs to our company. His name is Vinetren.

George Myers arrived in camp last week. George looks well to what he did when he left us. He is limpin' around now with the sore feet. His feet is swelled so he can't get his boots [on].

Orderly Hornback has been to Louisville this week. He got back in camp night before last. He says he seen all our boys that is in the hospital at Louisville. He says Vancise and Leonard Fair is able for duty. They say [they] would like to come to camp but the doctors won't let them come. Hornback says Thomas Sawyer is very sick. Sawyer was taken sick with the measles the second day we was on the march from Louisville and he was taken back to Louisville and he has been there ever since. Hornback thinks he has the typhoid fever. He says John Forest has got the rheumatism in one of his hips. Forest says he don't think he will ever be fit for the service again.

Mister Carls is pretty poor. I guess he well get a discharge and Daniel Listen will get a discharge. Orderly says Mr. Fisher is gaining. There is eight of our boys in the hospital at Louisville yet. Orderly received a barrel of eggs and a barrel of butter yesterday that was sent to him from home and I had some of the eggs to eat for my dinner. It is a strange thing for us to hear a chicken squawk or a rooster crow. Chickens has to get where there is soldiers. I don't recollect of seeing a chicken since New Years or hearing one squall.

The Captain received a box of clothing yesterday that was sent to him from the forks of the river for the boys in this company. There is not much going on here now. It is about the same old thing every day. It is know [no] telling how long we will stay here yet we may stay a good while and we may not stay very long. It is as muddy as ever yet here. It rained all day yesterday and the fore part of last night the rain turned to a sleet and the latter part of the night it snowed some. Today is a cloudy and damp day. It is middling warm today. We have not had any cold weather here. This winter we had the coldest spell of weather when we was in Camp Buell at Louisville that we have had this winter.

The sleigh ride we have this winter I guess we will have to take on a mud boat. There is a very fair prospect of it now and has been for the last month. I send my best respects to your father and mother and the rest of your folks at home. This is all at present. From your friend.

G Morgan
To Henry Hill

March 15, 1862

Camp Andrew Jackson, Tennessee
March the 15th 1862

Friend Henry,

I received your kind and welcome letter and I was glad to hear from you, but I was sorry to hear that you do not enjoy good health. I am well and enjoy my self well and the rest of the boys in camp belonging to the company are about all well. There is a few of the boys that is not very well. It is laid to the change of water for their sickness. George Shanks was taken sick about the time we was to leave Baken Creek and was left there and Byron Rogwood and George Augustine were sent to Elizabethtown to the hospital before we left Baken Creek. There is four or five of our boys at Louisville. We have lost 7 men out of our company since we have been in the service and Company G has lost 8 men, the rest of the Company has not lost as many men. Henry Boardner was left at Bowling Green [Kentucky] sick when the division marched through here. John Adams has got the mumps but he has not got the mumps very bad. Augustus Pryor was elected second lieutenant of company H a few days ago. We are camped now about 3 1/2 miles south east of Nashville on a high hill. Our company got in camp here the 8th. The company started from Baken Creek the 4th. It come through from Baken Creek to Nashville on the cars. There was four of boys of the company came through with teams and myself was one of the four. We started from Green River the 3rd with the teams.

The 3rd and fourth were two pretty cold days and there was a cold and sharp wind blew in our faces all day. We got through to Burren River the 6th about noon. There was fourteen miles of mud road between Green River and Bowling Green that was cut up so that it was most impossible for a team to get through. The rest of the road was a good stone pike. I saw some very nice country and some that was not so nice between Bowling Green and Green River. The rebels burnt two bridges at Bowling Green and a number of valuable buildings. The bridge that they have to cross on at Barren River is made by having two steamboats in the channel and a flat boat on each side of the steamers. The 6[th] we hauled the baggage across the river from one station to the other and come three miles out of town and stayed all night and the next day. We come within a mile and a quarter of the line. We stayed that night close to the rebels old camp where they held their reinforcement to reinforce Bowling Green if we should of ever attacked Bowling Green while they were there. Bowling Green is a well fortified place. The evening of the 6th we passed General Woods Div. about fourteen miles the other side of Nashville. We got in camp the evening of the 8th. They have some nice looking farms between here and Bowling Green. It is reported that there were a great deal of sickness in the rebel army while they were at Bowling Green and that they lost a great many men while they were there. It rained here yesterday afternoon and last night and a part of this forenoon. I am guard at the commissary today. I send my love and best wishes to you and your folks. This is all at present from your friend.

Guy Morgan
to Henry Hill.

March 29, 1862

Camp Van Buren, Tennessee
March the 29th 1862

My Dear Brother and Sister,

I now seat myself to answer your kind and much welcome letters. I am well and I hope that these few lines will find you folks at home enjoying good health. There is one of the boys in our company that is pretty sick, he was taken to the hospital yesterday. The rest at the boys in company are in pretty good health now. Them that is in camp, Leonard[?] Fair, I suppose is at Nashville in the hospital. We have not heard from him for about a week. At that time he was pretty sick. George Shanks and James Inman come in Camp yesterday. George Shanks was left to Baken Creek sick at the time we started from Baken Creek to come to the regiment and James Inman was left to take care of him. Shanks and Inman went to Louisville from Baker Creek and they went down the Ohio River on a boat and come up the Cumberland River to Nashville. James Inman saw John Forest and Russel Vancise and Jule Stockings at Louisville. He said he expected John Forest and Vancise would be discharged.

We are now camped 30 miles from Nashville within a mile of Murfreesboro. Our regiment is camped within 40 rods of Stone River on the south side of [the river]. We arrived in this camp the 21st of March. We started from Andrew Jackson the morning of the 18th. The order was given the evening of the 17th by General Mitchell to draw five day rations and get ready to march the morning of the 18th at half past seven o'clock. The first day we marched about 16 miles. We marched through some nice country that day. The morning of the 19th about the time we got ready to start it commenced raining and it rained till we was all pretty well soaked with water and then it stopped raining for that day. We marched 16 miles that day, our coats got pretty well dried off till night. It was about dark that night when we went in to camp.

The next morning just as we had got ready to start again it commenced raining and it rained till we was pretty well soaked again and then it stopped raining for that day. We only had 5 or 6 miles to come that day to get in camp. We did same as the Negro done when he was a going home when we was on this march. We took the longest road [?]r to get safe home. The first day at three o'clock in the afternoon we was only fifteen miles of Murfreesboro. We turned to the left there and we marched till about noon the next day before we got in fifteen miles of this town. There is a great deal of cedar timber in this part of Tennessee. We are in Rutherford County, middle Tennessee. We are within 60 miles of Alabammy line. The rebels army left this camp about three weeks. We are encamped in one of the old rebels camps now where they camped a while when they retreated from Nashville and Fort Donelson. There was not many, though, that come from Donelson. The rebels acknowledge a loss of twelve thousand pysioners [prisoners] and killed together.

Our company was out on picket guard last Wednesday. We was out about a mile and a half south of Murfreesboro. There was four of us boys went to one country house and got our supper Wednesday evening and our breakfast Thursday morning. The two meals cost us a half a dollar each. The man's name that we eat supper and breakfast with is Woodrough. Woodrough had a secesh blanket and overcoat and a dress coat and secesh pants that he showed to us when we was there and two or three big knives that the secesh used. I should judge that he had been in the secesh army by the look of things around him now. But if he ever was in the secesh, army I think he took a wise course in doing as he did. There was a good many soldiers deserted the Southern army when they retreated through here. Woodrough pretends to be a Union man. Woodrough says the southern army is a going to make a stand down close to the Tennessee line. Woodrough's wife said she would give a dinner or supper whichever it might be free of charge when their boys chased us back through here. We told her we thanked her for her kindness. We told her we would pay her, we would pay her for her victuals that we got when their boys chased us back. The rebels I think will keep so far ahead of us that we will never get close enough to the for to let them have a chance to chase us. It they keep on running as they have been doing for the last four or five weeks.

We had all the sweet potatoes to eat that we wished for when we was on picket. We got back in camp about ten o'clock Thursday morning. This is a great farm country [illegible] Wheat is eighteen bushels to the acre and a good season for corn they raise sixty bushels of corn to the acre and they raise a great deal of cotton in this county. The farmers say they can make more clear money at raising cotton than anything. Corn is worth about 50 cents a bushel here.

There is not telling how soon we will march from here, but I suppose we will stay here a week or two here yet. When you write to me, direct your letter to Cap. S. S. Canfield Co. K 21 Regiment, Tennessee. This is all present from your affectionate Brother.

G. Crawfoot and N. M. Crawfoot

May 2, 1862

Huntsville, Alabama
May the 2nd 1862

Dear Friend Henry.

I take my pen in hand this afternoon to write you a letter to inform you that I am well and all the rest of the boys belonging to the company that is with the company are in pretty good health. There is one or two of the boys that was left back to Murfreesboro sick that has come to camp since we have been in camp Taylor that is not got very stout yet but they are gaining as fast as could be expected.

We arrived in this town the 11th of April. General Sill's brigade was the second brigade that come in this town. We got in this town about 2 o'clock in the afternoon. The march from Murfreesboro here the distance is 80 miles. We marched over some nice country from Murfreesboro here and some hard looking country. Their corn was planted and up along the road when we come through in the march from Murfreesboro here and their wheat between there and Mursfreesboro the most of it looked well and was growing fast and their meadows were starting and getting green and the trees was coming out in leaves and the spring blowers was up and all out in full bloom. Henry, I suppose every thing was up as far forward here at the first of April as they will be at home in Wood County at first of May.

While we was in Camp Taylor Colonel Norton was provost Marshal of Huntsville and while he was provost Marshal the boys of this regiment had to stand guard every other day. The 25 of April there was [illegible] detailed out of every company to go and enforce the picket guard at a bridge across a creek down within four miles of Decatur. I was one that went out of our company on picket. It was 9 o'clock at night when we was detailed. They was in a hurry for us to go and the boys out of our company went without taking their blankets. We went up in town and there we got aboard of the cars. The squad that was going out on picket was on the car next to the engine. We had not been aboard of the cars but a few minutes till the engine started off with us. We had not went but a little ways till the engine uncoupled and the engine left us and kept a goin till it was out of hearing. The engineer was left behind. There was only one man on the engine and he was a man that had never been on a engine before that night. He was one of the guards that was going out on picket. He had crawled up on the engine because I presume it suited him better to ride there than it did in the passenger car, but I guess he wished many wishes to be so before he got the old locomotive stopped. It was a pretty dark night and there was no light on the engine, only what light the fire give. The locomotive run about five miles before he got it stopped. There was another engine hitched to the train and we followed after the engine till we overtook it. The engine had stopped when we come up and the fire was down and there was not much steam. It was hitched to the train and taken back to Huntsville. It was about midnight when we got back to Huntsville and got ready to start again. We got to the bridge that we was sent to guard the next morning at four o'clock. We was sent there to reenforce the guard to keep the rebels from burning the bridge. Our men was retreating from Decatur and going to meet the rebels at Stevenson on the Chattenooga road. The rebels was advancing on our men at Decatur with a pretty large force by what we could hear. Our men got on this side of the Tennessee River and got all their luggage across about noon the 27th. Our men burnt the Tennessee Bridge in afternoon of the 27th. Our men was shipped from there as fast as possible and sent to Stevenson. The rebels got in Decatur the 28th and camped within sight of our men and our men shot shells over in their camps and made them move their quarters back further from the river. The 18 Ohio was the only regiment left to the river and part of the artillery was left at the river as a picket guard. We was relieved at the bridge the evening of the 28 at 5 o'clock. They [there] was a regiment on the train that we come up on and all their baggage. The old engine was so heavy loaded that every place that it was a little upgrade the engine would stall and the boys would have to get oft and push the lead up the hill. It was about midnight when we got back in camp. The country between here and Decatur the most of the land is low and swampy land and every thing and the morning of the 28 our regiment had orders to go to Stevenson the next morning at six o'clock. Our tents and baggage was all loaded the morning of the 28th at six o'clock and we marched up in town. We waited here till about eleven o'clock for a train. We started at eleven and we went on the cars within eight miles of Stevenson to where the secesh [secessionists] had burnt a bridge from across Crow Creek. It was about five o'clock in the afternoon when we got to this river we crossed the river on a pontoon bridge and marched eight miles that night to Mud Creek near Stevenson and there we camped under a woodshed. That night it commenced raining toward morning and drizzled rain till about nine o'clock. The next morning. The morning of the 30th we crossed Mud River and marched into Stevenson. We stopped in Stevenson. We took houses for our quarters that the secesh had left and run away. Why we had to go in these houses or lay out doors for our tents and all our camp equippage, had been left to a station twelve miles from Stevenson.

[2 lines missing]

General Mitchell left Huntsville for Stevenson the same day we did but he went early in the morning on a train. The rebels now was advancing on us from Chattenooga. When Mitchell got down to Stevenson he told our men that was there that he was bound to take Bridgeport that day yet or die. He had five regiments of his Division between Stevenson and Bridgeport. Mitchell took that town that afternoon. The rebels saw our men coming and saw there was too large a force for them and our boys howlloowing and as they come skert (scared) the rebels so they run for life. There was only about 2,000 of the rebels on this side of the river there. The secesh picket guard, hearing the firing come pretty near up to our men before they knew it was our men and our men took some of them prisoners. The men that our men took had papers pinned on their hats and writing on the paper saying, "bound for Stevenson". They got to Stevenson the next day, but I presume rather different way and their calculations was to get here. We have not had no true report of how many was killed on the rebels side at that fight.

Our men had another skirmish with them the 30th and have taken some more of them prisoners. I was on picket guard the night of the 30th. We were on guard over a mile from town. It rained a part of that night pretty hard but toward morning it cleared and the 1st of May was a nice day. After we had got six or 8 miles from the town of Huntsville the land begin to get low and swampy and it was low wet and swampy land till we got to Stevenson. Only once and a while a little knob and then the land is so poor that it won't hardly raise beans. All the wheat between Huntsville and Stevenson was mostly headed out and there was the most of it that is only half knee high.

The evening of the 1st our regiment had orders to come back to Huntsville. We left Stevenson after dark. We had eight [miles of?] road to walk over and two [more?] on rivers to cross on pontoon bridges. It was between twelve and one o'clock when we got on the cars and it was after sunrise when we got in Huntsville. We was sent back to reenforce our men here. There was three regiments sent back from Stevenson. The[y] were crossing the Tennessee River west of here. They had enough of them got across to drive what men we had at the river for a ways. There was only one regiment left at the river and two at Huntsville, but before we could get there the fracas was all over. The secesh burnt a bridge between here and the Tennessee River on the road to Decatur. When the bridge was set afire there was three of our trains on the other side of the bridge that was on fire. There was two trains crossed the bridge and the third train of cars while crossing the bridge, the bridge broke down and the train burnt and there was some of our men lost on that train. Captain Katen, captain of Company H, 21 regiment is reported lost on that train.

Henry, I have answered all the letters I have received, but I have not received any very lately. There is a great deal of our mail gets destroyed before it gets here.

This is all at present, friend.
G. Morgan to Henry. I send my best respects to all.

June 8, 1862

June the 8th 1862

Dear Friend,

I received your kind and much welcome letter yesterday which was dated May the 25th and I was glad to hear from you to hear that you were well. I am well and the most of the boys belonging to the company are in good health. Charles Gano has been sick for a day or two past, he is some better today. Charley is down to Lake Swan fishing with a hook and line today. We catch perch in the lake mostly. There is plenty of all sorts of fish in the lake but they are hard to catch with a hook.

Our company is picket guard at the Junction near Decatur. We come out here on picket the 29th of May. We are guarding two bridge[s] at this place. One on the road that runs from Huntsville to Athens and one that runs from Huntsville to Decatur. We are now encamped where they is nothing but wet and swampy land extends nearly around our camp. We are encamped one mile and a quarter from the Tennessee River where the bridge was burnt. The lake is between a quarter and a half mile this side of the river. The lake is said to be between six and eight miles long. General Mitchell has men to work this side of the river where the bridge was burnt. They are fixing the road this side of the river so they [there] can be an engine run down to the river and put on a boat. The calculation is now to take an engine across the river. There [the?] boat is to make yet that the engine is to be taken over in. They have about 15 or twenty negroes to work on the road at the river. They have been to work on this job two days and have made but a small show of work on the road. There is not much danger of these negroes overdoing themselves. If fast working does it, for there is not much of that kind of work done among them.

Those negroes that was working at the bridge for the past two days held a meeting in our camp yesterday afternoon. I was on guard yesterday at the lake bridge. By being there I missed hearing the darky preach. The boys that was at the meeting said they had a very good meeting. They is but very few of the colored people here that knows there letters. The black man that preached to them yesterday is a slave. What little education he has got he got by studdying nights. There is but few of the white people educated here as well as they are in the northern states. There was two men at the bridge yesterday with us that said they could read. They were poor men that has to work by the month [?] and days work for a living. Henry, I will have to tell you how they serve their stray slaves that is caught traveling through the country here and is suspitioned [suspicioned, i.e, suspected] to be astray. He is taken up and put into a pen in jail that is built a purpose for putting them in. They are then advertised. If no owners found for them they are sold and the money that is got for them goes to the county treasurer or state [treasurer] I do not know exactly which.

We have had fine weather here for the last three weeks and some pretty warm weather. Yesterday and today has been pretty cool days. Their wheat is ripe here and a part at it is cut. Their wheat crop here is not going to be much of a crop this year. There is some of their corn that is beginning to look pretty well. Henry, we have lived well here for the few past days. There is some days that we have mush for dinner, supper, and breakfast. Our mush pot holds about ten pales. We have to buy our milk. we pay 20 cents a gallon for milk and besides all our mush and milk we have. We have a fort here that we can get into if the Confederates should attack us.

Henry, I should of written oftener than I have but there has not been any direct way of sending letters till lately from here to Nashville. This is all at present. I send my best respects to your folks. From your friend

Guy Morgan. Write soon.
To Henry Hill.

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