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1863 November 26: “Homer makes well in the sutler business for the little he has been in it”

November 26, 2013

The original letter is in the Edwin D. Levings Papers (River Falls Mss BO), in the University Archives and Area Research Center at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls.

Vicksburge [sic]
Nov 26th, 1863 ~~

My Dear Parents,

                                   We received yours of the 1st on the 18th, and now avail ourselves of the first opportunity to answer.  Our Brigade left Natchez on the 22nd and arrived here the 24th.  I do not know whether there is any movement on foot here or not.  There is a rumor we are going somewhere tomorrow, but if so, I do not  know where that is.

It was with much delight we read of the arrival of Cousins Hattie and Lottie.  I wish we could see them.  I hope they will find their new homes pleasant and agreeable.  The day before your letter came, the mail favored us with letters from Louisa and Emma; and they said they had given us their Sister Hattie.  Our pleasure was not exceeded by yours, I venture to say.  Give them our love and best wishes.  [paragraph break added]

The guerrillas did not trouble us much coming up.  Near Rodney, Miss., the 53rd captured 10.  Further up the river they came in sight, but a few shell[s] made them hustle in quick time.  10 more were caught.  The Capt. goes home to-day to recruit for the Co.  One man from each Co. goes.  No double now but we shall get some men.  Did you see Van Warner¹ or Mrs. Holman’s husband²?  They have gone home on furlough.  Van Warner lives at Rush River, & said he would see you,—a fine man, & a true soldier as ever shouldered a musket. An old veteran of the Mexican war. [paragraph break added]

We expressed you yesterday to the Prescott Bank $80.00.  Homer makes well in the sutler business for the little he has been in it.  Allen White is down town sick & has just sent us a note to come & see him.  Shall go this afternoon.  He is 2nd Lieut of the 1st La. Col. Bat.  We have our old tents, but are going to draw new & new camp pails, &c.  We are camped just 80 rods from the celebrated rebel fort, Fort Hill.³  It is an awful looking hole & an awful looking country all about here.  Our forces have rebuilt it for temporary purposes, we [are] using the rebel lines for our picket lines.  Closer to town are our own fortifications and as much superior to theirs as you can well imagine.  We are so hurried to-day that writing barely possible.  Homer says he is too busy now.  Says tell them “I can hoe my row through any crowd.”  Well I must close, so good bye for this time.  Write all of you.

From Edwin

1.  Francis Van Warner was from New Centerville, Wisconsin.
2.  There were two Holmans in Company A, both from Prescott—Hollis N. and James H.
3.  Fort Hill today is part of the Vicksburg National Military Park. The National Park Service opens the narrative for Fort Hill thus, “Fort Hill was the anchor of the left flank of the rear Confederate defense line. The fort’s position was so strong that the Union Army did not even attempt an attack during the assaults of May 19 and 22. Overlooking the Mississippi River and the water battery located on the bank below, Fort Hill commanded the bend in the river north of the city.”

Edwin Levings letter of November 26, 1863, from the Edwin D. Levings Papers (River Falls Mss BO) in the University Archives & Area Research Center at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls

Edwin Levings letter of November 26, 1863, from the Edwin D. Levings Papers (River Falls Mss BO) in the University Archives & Area Research Center at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls

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