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Sillers-Holmes Family Correspondence

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Document Type: Autograph Letter Signed

Author: William W. Sillers
Date: July 16, 1863
Place: Near Darksville, Virginia
To: Frances Sillers Holmes

Physical Description: Ink on paper; 4 pages (21 x 13 cm) on 1 folded sheet

Note: Interest calculations in an unidentified hand on p. 4.

Number: MSN/CW 5025-10

Transcribed by: Paul Patterson and George Rugg, 2004-06

(Please click on our Technical Details button at left
for more information on transcription conventions,
image scanning conventions, etc.)

Page 1      Images: 150 DPI100 DPI72 DPI

Near Darksville, Va., July 16th/63.

My dear Sister:

     I am very thankful to be permitted to write you once again. I think the last time I wrote was about the 30 June—the day before we left Fredericksburg. I have heard from you to-day through Capt. Holmes' letters. You have the Small-Pox again in Clinton. I trust measures will be adopted to prevent the spread of the disease. I have also heard of a destructive Yankee Raid on Kenansville, Warsaw and vicinity. Vicksburg has fallen and Charleston is closely invested. It seems as if we are just on the threshold of ruin. It is not easy to see our way out of all this. I suppose it is the same road we have been travelling—through hard fighting. Our campaign on the other side of the Potomac was not as successful, as we could have wished. We captured a great deal, and fought

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I think without doubt, the most tremendous battle of the war. Our losses were certainly greater than they ever were before. The enemy was posted behind stone-walls and earth-works on very high hills and mountains. In our retreat the Yankee Cavalry attacked our wagon-train. I don't know how many wagons we lost; but among those destroyed was our Regimental Head Quarters' wagon. I lost my trunk and bed-clothes—everything in fact but the clothes I had on and a change of underclothing with my brush and comb and two or three towels, which latter were in my saddle-bags. The new homespun suit which you sent me was wrapped up in my bed-clothes. The new hat was in my trunk. I had also put my watch-chain in my trunk. I am nearly naked.
Col Hughes [i.e., Capt. Nicholas Colin Hughes] was mortally wounded at Gettysburg. He died yesterday morning at Martinsburg. He was Asst

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Adjutant-Genl. to Genl. Pettigrew, who was mortally wounded day before yesterday just before re-crossing the Potomac. Genl. Pettigrew was not dead yesterday at 12 o'clock M.; but it is thought he will certainly die. Col. Parker was wounded severely in the face at Gettysburg. He is at home by this time, I suppose. I wanted to get some things for you in Maryland; but as it has turned out, it is well I purchased nothing—for the Yankees would have captured everything.
Sister, this is not a pleasant letter to read, I know; but I only wished to write you, so that you might know of my whereabouts and condition.

Kiss the dear children often for me. Give my love to Dr., and all the family. May Heaven protect you all, and keep you from harm!

Page 4      Images: 150 DPI100 DPI72 DPI

Your affectionate Brother
W. W. Sillers

Transcription last modified: 28 Feb 2007 at 05:04 PM EST

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