1863 Feb 10


Camp Gordon

February 10, 1863

Mrs. Nancy J. Harden

My dear wife,

I again seat myself to drop you a few lines which will inform you that I am as well as you ever saw me, hoping these lines may reach and find you and Mollie enjoying the best of health.

Jane, I am well satisfied here.  We have the best set of officers in the Confederacy.  Our Captain is not as tight as he ought to be.  He lets his men do too much as they please.

We have had some of the most disagreeable weather down here I ever saw here last week, but it is warm and pleasant now.  Everyone that had to stand guard that bad weather has taken cold and some of them are bad off.

Mr. Orear is sick at the hospital, but he was better yesterday.

Jerry Singleton is complaining.

Mr. Benson has some cold, but he is up and about.

Mr. Spencer is lying in the tent, right by the side of me.  He has been down with the cramp colic two or three days.

John Patterson is well and looks very well.

Last Sunday morning at eight o’clock, I went on guard and stood until Monday, eight o’clock.  I have to do guard duty or anything else that comes to hand and I can do it as good as anybody.  There is two other men here who are hard of hearing like myself, and we all do duty as though we could hear well, and there is no difference.

The enemy has been firing on us for several days but done no damage.  They have thrown one shell over here that weighs 365 pounds.

We are expecting a fight here soon, even before Sunday.  The enemy have 74 gunboats lying off below Genesis Point.  They are supposed to have on board 25 or 30 thousand troops and they are expected to commence landing every hour.  Report says that they sent a flag of truce into Savannah last night and ordered the women and children all to march out of town, for they intended to shell the town until it was burnt.

It is supposed that we have about ten or twelve thousand troops here now, and they came in by the regiment every day.  Our company has got what is called the Georgia Rifle, with Sword Bayonet.  Some of them are very good guns, while others are no big potato. It is said that they will range 500 yards.

Jane, this may be the last letter that I will ever write.  I want you to take care of yourself and Mollie.  Train her up right.  Do not threaten her unless you intend to execute your threats at all hazard.  Console yourself and know that it was not my fault in coming here.  I wish I could see you and Mollie one more time, and if I live long enough I will, I reckon.

Tell the old man Seaborn that I am a Jass-Ack yet.  I stand at the head of the company of Jass-Acks.

John Pat has been to see me since I commenced writing and he is well and doing well.  He was detailed to shoot a man who deserted from his company, but General Beauregard has put it off 14 days from last Monday, so we expect to shoot him then.  He deserted from three different companies and has got the bounty every time, and the last time he deserted, he stole three or four horses and so he was sentenced to be shot.

I will send you two dollars for brother Washington.  Please give it to him.  I have not drawn my money yet, but as soon as I can I will.

I now have to prepare for battalion drill, so I will close as time and paper are about out.

Direct your letters thus:

W. H. Harden

Savannah, Georgia

in care of Capt. D. N. Martin

13th Georgia Battalion

So, I remain yours most affectionately.


W. H. Harden