William Digby Smith, 14th C.V.I., January 8, 1864


William Digby Smith, 14th C.V.I., January 8, 1864


United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865

United States. Army. Connecticut Infantry Regiment, 14th (1862-1865)


William Smith writes to his wife of the latest news from the camp, the continuous skirmishing, and the state of the Confederate army.




Camp on the Rapadan janury 8th
My dear wife I send you these few lines
to let you know that I am well hoping this
will find you and the children the same I
Received a letter and 2 papers with 2 plugs
of tobaco and a pair of mits that captain
lucas fetched to me dear wife the boys has
had a hard time of it sinse I rote to
you last the crossed the Repidan on Saturdy
in Water and mood up to there middle. it
twas awfull cold the went out skermishing all
day and when it come night the went to cook
Some Supper when the ball oppened the boys
Said that the never had sutch a hard fight
they johnnies was within 3 yards of them when
the cominced fighting generall hays ordered up
Some of the rest of the division but the
lay down so he damned them and he
Called for the 14th that he could depend
upon they boys did nobley the neaver done
So well before the lost in killed and wou[nded]
150 men of the old company B 1 wounded
James ingles in the G and 5 of the Subs 

[page 2]
the lost the most in A and I and
D C you will see it in the papers but I
happened to be one of the luckey ones I went
on picket a friday morning there did know
one know of it that we was going to move
untill 5 oclock Saturday morning when the
orders come to get ready to move at 7 oclock
so I was out at general Kilpatricks on picket
with 11 more and a leutenant So there was
a mounted orderley came out and told
the leutenant that the core was going to move
and he was to take his twelve men into
camp and gard the Camp So when we
got in the boys was all moved it twas
about a mile from our camp whare
the had the fight we could see them of
the hill back of our camp in the night
you could see the shells burst and the flash
of there guns plain as aney thing our camp
[he]int but about 5 minutes walk from
the river. So the boys are all back g
again over the river evrey thing is Quit 

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again the went over to try what a force
the had there and when the went the found
plentey of them they say that the johneys
heint got know clothing and are on
half rations that is all grass the paper
may blow what the boys has seen of them
had a plenty of Rations and clothing
but the know a nuff not to atack
us we have to atack them all the time
and the are all fortified and plenty
of rifelpits when we have to take
the open field to atack them or we have
to cross rivers or something else I donth
belive but from the rapidan to Richmond
evrey hill and hole is fortified the Keep
them to work all the time there is some
more going home to enlist and ere 5
officers I sent the childrens likenesis
home by fred ny the locked pretty rusty
I had them in my brest pocket going
to getteysburg and I sweat so that I
got them all rust you kneed not 

[page 4]
send t aney of them untill I get my Pay I
donth know but you will have to wate untill
the first of March Joseph Wibber and Neman
Crowell is all well when Joseph got back
he told me I was luckey this time he said he never
suffered so before in his life the was gone
2 days and a half it rained the most
of the time that the marc over the river
I have got a lot of suff newes to rite
to you but I cannot think of it know
dear wife there was 7 of the officers wives
Came to the camp a friday the Quarter
Master he went home on a furlow and
fitched them out so a saturday morning
there husbands had to go into the fight 
the womon stood on the hill all day Saturday 
locking a cross the river at them but thank
god there was none of the officers killed
there was 2 of them that had there wifes
wounded slightley there was one of our
Captains taken prisnor doton he was
from new britain Captain broach
got his finger ^bunged he may have to lose his
finger and he had his sword brock
he is going home in a day or two
but the 14th fo done nobley this time




“William Digby Smith, 14th C.V.I., January 8, 1864,” Linda Lear Center Digital Collections and Exhibitions, accessed April 24, 2024, https://lc-digital.conncoll.edu/items/show/1812.