1863 June 18


Thunderbolt Hospital

June 18, 1863

Mrs. Nancy J. Harden

My dear wife,

I will try to write you a few lines which will inform you that I am not well.  I am very sick at this time.  I hope these lines may find you and Mollie well, and doing well, and also all the rest of the family connection.

I cannot tell what is the matter with me.  We all thought I was taking the measles.  I do not think it is that.  I am not broke out, yet.  The doctors cannot tell what it is.  I think it is the bilious fever, as I am subject to that.  I have headache and cough a good deal.  My bones ache all over.  The small of my back and bowels hurt me.  I have not had an operation in three days, until just now.  I will try to get the doctors to send me home as soon as I am able to travel.  I can’t tell how long that will be.

I am lying on my bunk while I am writing these lines.  I am not able to sit up long enough to write a letter.

The Yanks have taken our ironclad gunboat day before yesterday, with 150 prisoners.  It is said she run aground and could not get away; others say she done it on purpose.  We have got more ironclads here now to protect us.  We expect a fight soon.

We have a good nurse in our ward, i.e. room.  His name is Westmoreland, a cousin to the old doctor that used to stay in Zebulon.  He knows his business and attends to it right.

We lost another man about two days ago out of our company.  His name was Burgamy.  He died at the General Hospital in Savannah.

They have been giving me quinine all the time.  I have taken a dose every three hours since I have been here, and my head roars so I can’t hear one thing.

Jane, I will have to close as I am worn out writing.  You must write often.  I will write again in two or three days to let you know how I am.

Yours, etc.

W. H. Harden